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Fear: Does It Drive You?

by Jennifer on March 2, 2010

By Jennifer Blanchard

Fear. It’s something that continually plagues writers.

Do you allow your fear to stop you from going after what you want in life?

The other day I was in my car on the way to work when the song Drive, by Incubus, came on the radio. I’m a huge Incubus fan, way back from early 1997 when they first came onto the alternative rock scene.

But it wasn’t until the other day that I really listened to the words Brandon Boyd was singing. I really started to think about the meaning of his words.

What I noticed was that he’s singing about allowing fear to drive you in life.

Here are the song’s lyrics:

Sometimes, I feel the fear of uncertainty stinging clear
And I can’t help but ask myself how much I let the fear
Take the wheel and steer
It’s driven me before
And it seems to have a vague, haunting mass appeal
But lately I’m beginning to find that I
Should be the one behind the wheel

Whatever tomorrow brings, I’ll be there
With open arms and open eyes yeah

Whatever tomorrow brings, I’ll be there
I’ll be there

So if I decide to waiver my chance to be one of the hive
Will I choose water over wine and hold my own and drive?
It’s driven me before
And it seems to be the way that everyone else gets around
But lately I’m beginning to find that
When I drive myself my light is found

Whatever tomorrow brings, I’ll be there
With open arms and open eyes yeah

Whatever tomorrow brings, I’ll be there
I’ll be there

Would you choose water over wine
Hold the wheel and drive

Whatever tomorrow brings, I’ll be there
With open arms and open eyes yeah

Whatever tomorrow brings, I’ll be there
I’ll be there

So…do you let the things procrastinators fear keep you from writing or from reaching your writing goals?

Or do you use them as fuel to keep striving for what you want in life?

As Boyd points out in the song, most people let fear drive them through life; it has a “haunting mass appeal.”

But just because other writers allow it to be their driver, that doesn’t mean you also have to employ it as your driver.

You could instead choose “water over wine” and drive yourself through life. You could choose to “hold the wheel and drive.”

At the end of the day, you have to do what works for you.

Do you allow your fears to drive you? Or do you the one sitting in the driver’s seat of your writing life?

About the Author: Jennifer Blanchard is founder of Procrastinating Writers. Be sure to follow her on Twitter.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Joanne Elliott aka soulsprite March 2, 2010 at 2:18 pm

Sometimes I do let fear drive me. There are times when I’m just plain frozen in place by it. But there have been times when I grabbed hold of the steering wheel.

I had a dream once, after a self-help conference, where I was in a convertible with the top down. The car was moving fast on a ramp heading onto the freeway, but my hands were not on the steering wheel. I woke up realizing I needed to take control of my life.

Thanks for writing about this.

2 Laura Lee Bloor March 4, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Yay! I love how similar our music tastes are (most of the time)! Great song; great message.

Using fear as a motivator instead of an obstacle is difficult. You have to be willing to admit what really scares you and then find ways to do it anyway. It’s an art that takes a lot of practice — a lot. I’m by no means an expert, but I’m getting better, working on it a little bit, every day.

3 David C March 11, 2010 at 12:02 pm

Oh yes! How many times i have let fear drive not only my writing but my hole life, maybe because my experiences when i was young, it is very hard to get rid of that fear ( I’m still working on it).
Thank you for bringing it up, love the site.
David C

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