Have you ever attained high levels of success in one part of your life, only to be confronted with decreased happiness that prevents you from actually enjoying it?
Sounds familiar, right?
There’s actually a name for this phenomenon. Gay Hendricks, author of The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level, terms it the “Upper Limit Problem.” For those who have never heard of the “Upper Limit Problem,” let me school you! Hendricks writes that each of us have an internal thermometer for how much success, wealth, happiness, love, and intimacy we will allow ourselves to experience-- kind of like a success comfort zone.
When we exceed our internal thermostat setting, we subconsciously do things to sabotage ourselves. This is so we can revert back to an old, familiar place where we can feel a sense of control; unfortunately, we are actually rejecting the overflow of abundance awaiting us. This Upper Limit Problem is our universal human tendency to sabotage ourselves when we have exceeded the artificial “Upper Limit” we have placed on ourselves.
You may say, “Nope, I don’t have that issue”, but if you truly reflect on it, you may come to a different conclusion. Before we get to how we “Upper Limit” ourselves, you should know that there are many reasons why we subconsciously do this. Hendricks identifies four hidden barriers that drive habitual self-sabotage. Are these barriers in your way?
1. We feel that we are fundamentally flawed in some way, and therefore do not deserve or cannot expand in the areas of abundance and success.
2. We are afraid that, by expanding our abundance, we will alienate others and cause us to be disloyal to our roots (family and friends). We fear leaving others behind, which will result in us being alone.
3. We believe that bigger success will mean bigger burdens (the “mo’ money, mo’ problems” belief).
4. Lastly, we believe that if we were to outshine others, we would make them look bad. We dim our own light to be more at the level of others so we can “fit in” or “be a team player.”
Personally, I have resonated with all of these barriers at one point or another. I’ve even found “logical, rational” reasons to talk myself into believing that these barriers must exist for a sound reason.
Here are some of the most common ways that we “Upper Limit” ourselves, or “cramp our positive energy,” as Hendricks says:
These are just a few of the ways that we self-sabotage. Again-- I’ve done it all!
Maybe you, like me, have been the worrier, taking a simple dilemma and turning it into a catastrophe. Your thoughts may magnify a normal situation and warp it into a full-blown disaster. I’ve been at a beautiful dinner with great company, totally unable to enjoy myself… because I realized I left a candle on at home. I imagined the entire house burning down, despite the fact that the type of candle I have simply burns down to the wick (making my nightmare scenario virtually impossible).
I’ve also been the one that had an incredible opportunity to give a keynote presentation (that I was really excited about)-- only to arrive at the keynote totally sick. It was like my body just absorbed my fears and limiting beliefs, physically “upper limiting” what I was capable of.
Or that time when everything was going perfectly right, so I just had to pick an argument to mess it all up… because life was just going “too well” in that moment.
Or just about any time someone tries to compliment me, saying things like, “You’re amazing!” and I instinctively respond, “No girl, I’m out here struggling, doing the best I can.” Yep, that right there is deflection at its finest!
As it turns out, we all subconsciously “upper limit” ourselves, especially at times when our lives are truly about to be taken to the next level. The key is to recognize when you are doing it, put a stop to it, and allow abundance to come into your life. Until we can solve our Upper Limit Problem, we will keep finding ways to bring ourselves back down when we’ve blown past our old setting.
Since reading The Big Leap, I have grown tremendously. I can immediately sense when I am “upper limiting” myself, and it liberates a new energy inside of me. I can then draw on that energy to propel me to new heights of abundance, love, and creativity. As soon as I realize the limiting pattern is occurring, I can shift my energy to break free of the Upper Limit and experience a positive flow of energy again.
This is about expanding your consciousness and allowing yourself to receive the abundance, success, and love that you are meant to receive. Most importantly, it also allows you to live your life in your “Zone of Genius,” a place in which you are operating at your highest vibrations, doing the things you love, and expending energy on things that only will fuel positivity and positive energy in your life.
The Big Leap has been an absolute game changer in my own experience. It has helped me to truly cherish every moment. What’s more, it has helped me to receive more blessings in my life by allowing me to be receptive, rather than rejecting or inhibiting my own success.
The book includes some other incredible theories as well, like living on Einstein Time, doing only what you are called to do and what’s in your Zone of Genius, and vibrating high enough for love to enter your life. It truly is transformative in every way. My life from here on out will be defined as “before” and “after” reading The Big Leap. I am so excited about what’s in store, and would encourage you to join me in this journey!
Cheers to leaping out of the pond and into the ocean, because greatness is on its way!