the fear outlasts the fix

In the past month we’ve replaced two tires and repaired two other tires. The repaired tires had slow leaks. Every few days I had to pump them up. I finally bought a tire inflater to make that process easy. For $20. Fixing the tires cost $10 for one, nothing for the other. Of the two tires replaced, one had a broken steel belt which caused the steering wheel to shake as we drove.

There are lessons about the financial cost of procrastination here. I know that. But that’s not what I want to write about.

Each time I walk to the car or van now, I have a cringing fear that a tire will be flat, that the steering will still shake. The car is fixed, my fear is not. The fear came because I didn’t solve the problem. I avoided the time it would take to go to the shop. I avoided the money I was sure we would spend. And in the avoidance, I wove fear and frustration into my driving experience.

From the response last week to my post about finishing things before the end of the year, others apparently share this skill of training myself to fear what could easily be fixed. It’s worth mentioning in this expanded discussion for two reasons.

1. It’s worth considering how well we teach ourselves to fear.

2. It’s worth remembering that we can finish things at the beginning of the year, not just the end.

Happy first Monday of the new year. Fix something.


This year, I’m writing about following Jesus in plain words at  Just so you know.


11 responses to “the fear outlasts the fix

  1. Good thoughts, Jon. We can (and should) always be finishing, always be bringing things to fruition.

  2. As a first-class procrastinator, I occasionally stop to realize that the stress part of the reason I am putting off the task could be alleviated by doing the task. Doing the thing creates a fixed situation in that it removes the flotsam and jetsam that have gotten stuck on the logjam of my procrastination.

  3. Interesting. I had never thought about how my procrastination may be teaching me to do things i didn’t want to do. I always thought my procrastination let me do the things i wanted to do.

  4. tim – always finishing. yes. What is interesting in your choice of the word
    fruition. There is not just an ending that you are talking about but a
    tending things all the way through to fruit, to success, to profit, to
    benefit, to blessing. Pick your metaphor and your community.


  5. o amy, you understand exactly. and yet we wait.

  6. philip – your way of explaining it is perfectly insightful. teaching me to
    do things i didn’t want to do. To worry. to avoid. to fear. to wonder.

  7. This came up today, and I recognized the pang of fear for what it was. You helped equip me to deal with it. Thank you.

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