What Would You Do If You Weren’t Afraid?

Fear has been kicking my butt for as long as I can remember. How about you?

As a young girl I had dreams of becoming a writer. I’d come home from school and sit at my desk with a blank piece of paper and pencil. I’d stare at the page and feel silly. What am I going to write? Who will read my work? No words ever hit the page.

I also had dreams of becoming a singer.


I had opportunity to take piano and voice lessons – for free – with my uncle.

I passed on the opportunity. I couldn’t bare to share my voice with others and hear any negative feedback.

Instead I confined myself to singing in the kitchen.

What dreams have you given up?

When I quit my job in 2006 to pursue self-employment I had great ideas yet couldn’t implement them. I froze at the thought of promoting myself. At my wits end, I asked one night after dinner, “Where is all this fear coming from!?”

My husband, who had been down a similar road before me, asked two questions that were also asked of him:

  • What would you do if you weren’t afraid?
  • What would you do if you didn’t need approval from others?

Sheryl Sandberg references the first question in her book Lean In. And recently at a networking event these questions led the group discussion.

What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

It’s a great question to brainstorm without boundaries. Go crazy! Write in your journal, share with friends (or not), find people who can support your efforts to be brave and live life on your terms.

Me? I’d write more. A lot more. On my blog and for other publications. I’d worry less about what I write and make sure it’s from my heart. I’m actively taking steps in that direction. I’m also working on a book outline and proposal.

When fear threatens to kick my butt, I now have the tools I need to kick back. I get curious, find time for quiet, and assess the risk, take action.

Your turn:

  • What would you do if you weren’t afraid?
  • What would you do if you didn’t need approval from others?
  • What support do you need to turn thoughts into reality?

Would love to hear from you in the comments.

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About Stacey:

Hi and welcome to the Brave Communicator blog where I write about communication as the path to well-being, trust, and influence.

I share insights, observations and interviews with brave communicators. I invite you to take a look around and bravely join the conversation. Learn more
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