PSYCH OUT: Patti Maciesz
Psych Out is an ongoing series on the topic of fear & creativity.
In response to many of our readers expressing that fear often blocked their creative flow, Seymour asked a variety of entrepreneurs and artists to share their experience in their own words. Discover how they get over anxiety and self-doubt and find the strength to move forward with their projects.
PATTI MACIESZ is an artist and entrepreneur. Patti began her career at the prestigious Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum and has been making art since childhood. Her recent work includes the The Paris Positives Project, a series of paintings based on found negatives in Paris which was fully funded by crowd sourced donations (to read more about it click: here.) Patti is also the co-founder of Halfslant, an international art initiative working to bring artists into challenging new contexts in the public sphere. Patti currently splits her time between painting her Everyday Talismans project and building Inner Circle, an opportunity exchange network for creatives and technologists. She loves her dog Sunny and co-founded Puppystream.me to prove it.
Protection From Fear
by Patricia Maciesz
Two things have really helped me overcome fear. Sounds cheesy, but reading Arianna Huffington’s book On Becoming Fearless was big for me. The premise is to lean in to fear, become comfortable with it, and actively seek out that state rather than living a life avoiding fear.
Turns out that for me a lot of my fears were paralyzing and kept me from stepping up and chasing my dreams. I never thought being a woman played into that, but reading this book made me realize that many women try to be polite, not shake things up, and stay out of the way. I was one of them. So I had to face my fears and ask myself a very important question – why haven’t I been doing my own thing? Why don’t I start chasing my own dreams? Sure, I make a great right hand. But now I want to be the boss. But let’s be honest: I’m actually pretty reserved and self-depreciating. “Bossing-up” is hard.
So I found a fun way to help me do it.
I started making little talismans to remind myself to overcome my fears. Painted onto shopping tags, they remind me there is a cost to not stepping up.
They are small enough to bring everywhere. They hang near my workspace and stay tucked in my pocket at events. I have even begun to make custom ones for friends with specific needs and fears.
Insecurity, impatience, apathy all have their respective antidotes in Love, Acceptance and Empathy.
The one I take with me everywhere reads:
Are you afraid? Here’s some Strength when you need it.
I had it in my pocket when I recently met Arianna Huffington and told her about how she inspired me. It helped me approach her and land an opportunity to write about my company for the Huffington Post.
Published: March 5th, 2013