A RAW & Righteous Interview by Katherine Elizabeth Jackson
*Erin is leading our upcoming workshop on July 29th at Sacred Roots Holistic Healing, Removing Fear From Your Life With Intention. Get your tickets now!
Katherine Elizabeth Jackson: What was the inspiration behind starting your movement, FCK FEAR?
Erin Julianna: The inspiration behind starting the movement was… (pauses) it was on New Year’s Day. I was watching this webinar. Myleik [Teele] from curlBOX was on there with Shaun King. It was about twelve people who were on there who were successful in their field, and they were just telling their own stories about how they got to where they were and what kind of challenges they faced. After I got finished listening to it, I just was so amped up… they kept saying over and over, “you have to be fearless”. I was like, dang, you have be fearless. Fuck fear!
Them going for what they did and being able to share their journey and their story, that was a real inspiration. I was also at a point where I had moved out to LA for a job, and the job that I moved out here for, I wasn’t at anymore. I was just looking for something more, so [I said]… “What are you gonna do? What is it that you want to do?” I can’t let fear hold me back.
KEJ: How has that motto affected you and your life?
EJ: It has allowed me to try a lot of different things. Try things that I may not succeed at, or may not be a good fit, but I would have never known if I would have not tried. If I would have been fearful. Especially because I am a creative at heart, but I still do need to pay the bills, so sometimes I’m kind of like, juggling different jobs. Sometimes it can be a little [scary], like dang, should I get a regular job? Should I get a full-time job? I have to think about it like, no. That’s not what makes me happy.
Reminding myself, don’t be scared. It could not happen the way that you planned it, but just taking a chance on yourself, it could be better than what you even imagined. So, I have to keep that in the back of my mind all the time like, don’t be scared. Just try. What’s the worst that could happen?
KEJ: What is fear to you?
EJ: I feel like fear is just the unknown. I feel like when I’m prepared for something, then I don’t have any fear. I know what’s going on. When I don’t know what’s going on… [I] can be fearful. But if you tap into your own head and tell yourself, just chill out.. even if you don’t necessarily know [what you’re facing], it won’t be the worst thing. When you don’t know, there are so many different possibilities and you just get overwhelmed like, “I just don’t know, I’m scared”. As quick as it can be something bad, it can really be something beautiful.
KEJ: Was ethnic and/or gender diversity key for you in starting the FCK FEAR movement?
EJ: No, I don’t think that was a factor. More than anything, it was more of people who want to try something different. Who want something new. They’re tired of the old things, they’re tired of the same things they’ve seen all the time and they want something new. I feel like everybody wants something new, but then what stops you from going after the new? It’s the unknown. No, fuck that. Fuck fear. [This movement] was for everyone despite whoever the person was, however old they were, or their ethnicity. It was just somebody who wanted something more for themselves. Be great on purpose. Whatever you have to do… maybe you have to leave a job that’s not fulfilling you… but if that will help you to be great on purpose then fuck fear. You’re sticking around on a ten, but what if you could be making a move on a million? [We have to] take a chance on ourselves.
KEJ: What has working with the people that you’ve been working with taught you about yourself?
EJ: I go for it. Regardless of whether I know what the end result is, if I have an idea and I’m really passionate about it, I’m just going to go on it. Like, okay, I’m going to try this out. It really shows me that I’m not the kind of person that plans to much. I go for it. Other people, they have shown me that it is good to plan a little bit, but for me, when I’m caught in the moment, in order for me to get over that fear I have to have action. Otherwise I’ll talk myself out of it.
KEJ: What has working with the people that you’ve been working with taught you about humanity?
EJ: It has taught me that a lot of times, we’re harder on ourselves than other people can be on us. A lot of times I’ll have conversations… and people are so compassionate and empathetic and I’m the one who’s harder on myself. It has shown me that people do care in this world. There is still community. People come out and support. People are encouraging. Sometimes when I least expect it, people remind me… dang, I do have purpose. My purpose is bigger than me.
KEJ: What do you hope to achieve with your movement?
EJ: Long-term, I would love for this to be like, pop-up events in different cities. Coming together and really talking to people. Sharing success stories and stories of, “[I said] let me take a chance on myself, and this is what it came to be.” I want it to be on a bigger scale, where people can come and actually interact with each other and build a community. I just want to serve people in whatever way I can. And even if it’s just a little bit, just giving them a push of motivation or encouragement, then I feel like [FCK FEAR is] successful.
KEJ: What about short-term?
EJ: Short-term I want to make some more videos. Like a documentary kind of thing. One of the things I wrote about in my journal is that I want this to be a film festival. I want people to be able to submit films. I feel like, what better way to really show something than through a film? FCK FEAR is going to be a film festival.
KEJ: It’s going to be lit! So, what do you hope to achieve when someone embraces this movement?
EJ: Well… I want them to just… I don’t want it to look perfect, I just want it to look real. I feel like sometimes we have an idea, or we have a passion, and we don’t go for it fully because we’re scared of whatever. What if it doesn’t succeed, what if somebody doesn’t accept it. If you just take that one little chance, maybe what you go for doesn’t turn out like you expected, but maybe it opens the door for something else. I want [FCK FEAR] to be that vehicle for people to just do. I want people to move.
KEJ: Being a person living in America, how does FCK FEAR contribute to the movements, past and/or current, for the change or dismantling of the American dream?
EJ: Say you were brought up in a household where it was just like, “you need to get a job. You need to go to work every day for somebody else, so you can save up to get a house” or, “so you could have kids”. FCK FEAR is saying, whatever it is that you’ve been taught, that may not necessarily be what your reality is. Don’t be afraid to say this isn’t for me. When I came up with this, like I was saying before, I came out here for a full-time job. When I lost that job, I didn’t know how people were going to take it. I didn’t know how my family was going to react. I didn’t know what other people were going to say. Fuck fear, [because] it may not even be your fear, it may be other people’s fears that they project. Fuck your fear! A lot of what other people put on us is what they’re afraid to do themselves.
Sometimes I go off intuition, I go off feels. Sometimes I could be feeling something and nobody else can feel it. And it’s like, you’re scared, but I’m good! So, with FCK FEAR, it’s like, fuck everyone else’s fear. Who’s to say what’s right and what’s wrong?
KEJ: In a broader sense, how do you think the ways in which we express our power affect the world and its future in a positive way?
EJ: The ways which we express ourselves motivate others to express themselves. The way that I’m living my life is something that my mom has never done. It’s probably something she would have never thought of. For a lot of people in my family, [this way of living is] something new. It’s a brand new wave where people are being unapologetically themselves, they’re unapologetically going after the life that they want for themselves. There’s no limits.
If you keep doing things the same way, you’re not going to get anything different. The more you try things, the more you can perfect them, the more you become better. This new way of action is only going to make the future better. It’s just the journey. That’s what I’m learning- it’s not the end goal, it’s the whole journey.
KEJ: Going off that, what are some words of advice for people who are just now starting the journey of following their dreams.
EJ: Whatever dream that people have in their hearts, if it was put in everybody’s hearts, then everybody would be doing it. With that said, you have to have so much belief in what you want and what you stand for, that people who may not have believed you before start to believe because they see that you believe in it. This is a new way, so sometimes people are going to be afraid. Believe in your vision, believe in your plan, believe in what it is that you’re creating regardless of if nobody supports it or everybody supports it. If people see that, “oh, she’s really standing by this”, eventually they’re going to catch on. Stick to it, and don’t let other people deter you.
KEJ: What is, or are, the most important things in your life?
EJ: Currently, the most important things in my life… my mental stability, my belief in myself and my confidence. Before, I would have thought it was something totally different… material things… recently, I’ve had all that stripped away from me. Now, that means nothing. Also, comparing when I didn’t have anything to when I did have those things, I had the material things and my mental state wasn’t good. My confidence wasn’t up. The love that I had for myself wasn’t as strong as it could have been.
KEJ: Going off that… I feel that mental stability is starting to become more widely accepted as important. What do you feel like mental stability or mental instability does for the rest of your life? In terms of achieving your goals, your relationships with people, how far you can go and limitations you can break?
EJ: Everything. I feel like if you are mentally stable, then it’s you against all of your obstacles. You can take on the world if necessary. When you’re unstable, it’s really just you against yourself. The whole world can be cheering you on, but it doesn’t matter. Within your own head it’s just like, “I can’t do this” or “what if I fail?”. From my perspective, when you are unstable, it changes the whole game. It affects more than just you. Just like how they say, it takes a village to raise a child, it also takes a village to keep an adult flourishing.
KEJ: The RAW & Righteous vision is to connect people to a worldwide community. How do you see your work relating to that?
EJ: I feel like everybody deals with fear in some kind of way. If we are coming together in a form of community, [we see that] that’s something that we all deal with. However it looks for the person, I feel like everybody deals with that in some kind of way. We’re all just trying to be better. Better people, better friends, better overall. I feel like with the FCK FEAR movement, it can really talk to people about being greater on purpose. Going back to what we were talking about with the mental stabilities and instabilities, you could be thinking, “I’m fearful because I’m thinking these things about myself, but I’m not really this”. There’s always room to say fuck fear- the fears being projected onto us, the fears we are creating within our own minds. I feel like [our movements] go hand in hand.
Thank you Erin Julianna. Find out more about her movement on her Instagram, @erinjulianna.