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Through the Portal

 Using Our Voices to Change the World by: Tracy Uttley A few years ago, my son attended a personal growth workshop called Teen Leadership in Simi Valley, California. I agreed to assist as a volunteer. On the last day of the training, the teens took turns challenging themselves by completing a rigorous obstacle course to demonstrate their leadership skills like perseverance and endurance. The kids insisted I do it too. I agreed, but as I waited in line, my self-doubt and anxiety grew. My negative self-talk had convinced me I would fail before I even tried, but when my turn came, I propelled myself over the inverted wall, traversed the ninja rings, swung through the monkey bars, conquered the rope climb, and raced to the top of the sixty-foot high structure. Instead of feeling elated by my accomplishment, I was furious. I sat down and bawled my eyes out. I cried for all the missed opportunities in my life because I had doubted my abilities. I wept for the numerous times I had given my

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