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One step to freedom?100% of the shots you never take, never get in".

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One Step to Freedom? "100% of the shots you never take, never get in". In the middle of the arid desert, Colorado. A group of Cypriots and myself among them, crossed through the desert to reach the camping site where we would spend the night. Continuously attacking us, the blazing sun followed our every footstep, as our bodies were melting down like defenceless ice cubes. After a couple of hundreds of metres of walk, my feet started to numb. I was exhausted. My bottle, constantly in my hand, was running out of water. "Can my day get worse?", I wondered. What I didn't know was, that these obstacles were nothing compared to the inner conflict I would be going through soon. "Does anyone want to have a break? Does anyone want to have a swim?", Michael, our leader asked. Suddenly the feelings of joy and excitement replaced the tiredness and everyone was now smiling; I noticed I was smiling too. Impatiently we all followed Michael. That is when I first came face to face with my own Via Dolorosa. The worst of all is that I was not aware of how difficult it would be for me, that small step I was asked to take, for which I had to grapple hard with my own thoughts and deepest fears which I was not even aware of. ...read more.


Out of the blue, the battle started; the battle over which I had no control, the battle which was going on in my head and whose winner would determine my decision. On one side my limiting beliefs and fears joined forces, to stop me from jumping while on the other side my desire to jump was defensively trying to repulse the attack. The damage to the defence lines was unavoidable and since my fears took control over my body, I stepped back instead of going forward. Time was going by so quickly, as I tended to oscillate between the determination of jumping and the fear of falling. Over twenty minutes had passed since my last attempt and I was not looking forward to another one. "Nicola we will be leaving soon, if you are going to jump, do it now, or else come down so that we can continue." No! , a voice inside my head screamed. I am not giving up. I am not leaving unless I jump. As these wild thoughts were passing through my head, the sun sank lower. Trying to convince myself that I could do it, I once more stepped at the doorstep of fear. ...read more.


As if it was all for nothing. Although I am not free from my fears, I know it was not for nothing. I took the risk, I took the shot and I 'm proud of myself. The cheers and the congratulations I received as I came out of the lake, almost made up for the torture I went through. I was still feeling a bit dizzy from the fall so I sat to rest. That is when Michael came and told me: "100% of the shots you never take, never get in". Now this quote is one of my favourites. It was actually a quote of Michael Jordan's referring to basketball. When I first heard it, I didn't really understand what it meant, but after thinking about it, I became aware of its true meaning. It means that if someone does not dare to shoot the ball, because it may not go in the basket, he will never score. "It's risky not taking risks" a wise man said. In the middle of the arid desert, Colorado, I took the risk. I jumped. I may have not been freed from my fears but I learned my lesson. This experience shaped me into who I am today. A man who is not afraid of taking risks, and making steps beyond the limits of fears and limiting beliefs. ?? ?? ?? ?? Nicolas Kourtis ...read more.

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