How to Continually Move Forward With Your Art (Taking Massive Action) – EP 292

One of the major reasons why an art practice stagnates is because the artist stops moving forward. They falsely ignore genuine possibilities in pursuit of the “single right choice”. However, that choice doesn’t exist! We only have our next best step. On this episode, I’m going to show you how to continually move forward with your art by taking massive action.

Outline of This Episode

  • [2:24] Taking a peek inside the Savvy Painter Growth Studio
  • [5:42] Overcoming analysis paralysis in your art practice
  • [12:08] Defining massive action and embracing the unknown
  • [16:00] You can’t die from being uncomfortable

Don’t overthink it

Have you ever felt like you’re doing everything possible to move your art forward, but you keep spinning in circles? So many artists feel paralyzed in their practice because they feel like they don’t know what to do to get the results they want in their studio. The problem with this thought is not only will it leave us in a state of helplessness, it reveals that we believe there is only one right way to do things. And subsequently, there are tons of wrong choices too. This is a mind trick that keeps us from doing anything at all! Our brains gravitate towards black-and-white thinking, but the reality is there’s no right answer. There are 101 different ways to move forward with your art. Any one of those options will work, even if taking that action does not result in getting exactly what you want. It’s better to take action and fail because the better and faster you get at taking action, the more progress you will make.

Take massive action

It’s not enough to occasionally make decisions in our art practice. To move forward, we have to take massive action. That means taking your next best step repeatedly, until you get what you want. The next best step is anything that moves you forward based on the knowledge that you currently have. This means taking massive action requires a level of personal trust. You can’t predict the future. You will never know ahead of time what every step is or which step in your journey is most pivotal. All we have is an idea of where we want to go and a potential direction to walk in based on decisions we’ve already made. But if we never make any decisions, we’ll stay lost! Massive action means progress, not perfection. It means a commitment to keep walking until we find our next trail marker to continue the journey.

Feel your feelings

Taking massive action means being willing to suffer disappointment, frustration, and any other emotions that come up when we try our best and still fall short of our goal. This is such a critical moment in the artist’s journey. In this moment, we get to make a decision about who we want to be for ourselves in the face of adversity. Do we run away from all the bad feelings? Or do we acknowledge them for the emotions they are, and not make them mean anything negative about our art, our practice, or ourselves? When we resist emotions, they don’t just go away. They often get stronger and build a bigger barrier between us and our art. When you take massive action towards your goal, you commit to sit with those emotions, good and bad, while continuing to take the next best step. The good news is this: You can experience uncomfortable feelings. Even if your brain tells you you’re gonna die, you won’t. I promise.


Resources Mentioned on this episode

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When you feel confident about your work and you are solid in your self concept as an artist, you stop worrying about how long the painting takes, or when you will “make it.” Instead, you focus on what you know is working. You allow time for your process to unwind. You let go of all the chatter. This is what you will create for yourself in Growth Studio - the unwavering belief in yourself as an artist so that you make art that matters to you. Click here to join.

  • This is the first podcast I’ve listened to and I loved it! I recognised so much of what you talked about in myself. Some of the things I recognise when I’m feeling them, and sometimes I can get past them, sometimes I can’t. But recognising what’s happening in your brain is really important, and learning to not only cope with mistakes, but learn from them, and sometimes even make amazing new discoveries from them is such an important thing to learn, as an artist. Thank you for articulating these thoughts and processes so clearly. I will definitely encourage members of my painting collective to join! Many thanks. Brenda

    • Welcome, Brenda! You are spot on – recognizing and awareness is a HUGE first step (the biggest step). I’m so glad you have found the podcast and it’s resonating with you! ~A

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