What Would You Do If You Weren’t Afraid?

We asked a dozen women in and around New York City to answer that question. Now we want to hear from you.

Photo courtesy of Jing Qu

This year, more than 1 million women in this country will graduate from college. They will enter the workforce with higher GPAs than their male peers. Many will continue on to earn advanced degrees. The world is their oyster. Or is it?

Studies show that by the time they graduate, women are less ambitious than their male peers. They avoid leadership roles. They are afraid to speak up.

Why do women harbor such fear? Why are they afraid to raise their hands?

We launched a Tumblr campaign to ask the question: What would you do if you weren’t afraid? We’ve heard from women and men of all ages, from Nairobi to the Philippines.

As Rania tells us, “I would not be afraid to be myself.”

Amanda, a writer, says she’d “ask for more money.”

Lois says that “At age 67, I would FINALLY conquer my fears and learn to swim.”

Fear is something that affects us all. So this is our call to you: Don’t let yourself off the hook by deciding that something is out of your reach. Ask yourself, “What would I do if I weren’t afraid?” Take a photo and submit your story to ifuwerentafraid.tumblr.com. Overcome your fear.