Are upper limits causing you to sabotage your own results?
The term “upper limits problem” was coined by Gay Hendricks in his book called The Big Leap. Gay Hendricks described times in our life where we’re experiencing great success or results, and something inside of us gets triggered and says, “Wait a second! You’re experiencing more happiness than you’re accustomed to.” And that causes us to self-sabotage.
For example, maybe you’re having a really great time and feeling connected in your relationship – and in a very short period of time, pretty soon something gets triggered in one of you that says “You’ve exceeded your capacity here for happiness, good, or love,” and all of a sudden, there’s an argument or a fight.
Or maybe you’re experiencing success in your career, and you’re feeling really good, and again, something gets triggered inside of us in those moments that says “wait a second, you’re beyond your capacity to experience success right now.” And so what it does is it triggers maybe a self doubt thought. “This is too good to be true!” “What if it all falls apart?” And all of a sudden we’re down this train of thoughts that aren’t empowering.
So how do we overcome the upper limits? If you can imagine it like the thermostatic setting in your house, where if you have it set to a certain temperature. If it starts to get too hot, the air conditioning flips on. If it starts to get too cool, the heat flips on. That’s what each one of us has inside of us. It’s like this thermostatic setting on how much good we’re willing to allow.
If we’re not aware of when we’re feeling really good, and we’re having those great moments, pretty soon the air conditioning clicks in and we start to self-sabotage.
So to overcome that, here are some tools to use:
Use the ability to notice what you’re noticing. This came true in my own life, when I would go away to trainings or retreats. I would be having these incredible moments in my career connecting with people and my vision, and I would come home after being away for a few days. Within a few minutes of being home, I found myself picking a fight with Jeff over nothing. It wasn’t until I realized, “Oh I’ve exceeded my capacity for good here. There’s a part of me that doesn’t believe I deserve to be this happy.” So really try to notice when you find yourself self-sabotaging or when you’re having disempowering thoughts.
Accept that you have good in your life and claim it as your new normal. In those moments when you’re really feeling good, claim that good with “I deserve this. This is my new normal. This is my new set point.”
Use the ability to recognize when you’re feeling that good, to prevent the trigger. If the pattern maybe has been to pick the fight, or to have the limiting ideas, take that ability to notice them and then to reframe them. Choose a more empowering thought. For example, if you are feeling like you’re in a good place in your relationship and are thinking “What if it falls apart?”, change your thought to something like “What if this lasts!”
Another remedy that Gay Hendricks offers us in his book The Big Leap is this affirmation. This is an affirmation that you can work with multiple times a day to expand your capacity for success and for happiness. “I expand in love, success and abundance every single day as I inspire those around me to do the same.” Every time you’re speaking that affirmation with emotion and the believing it’s true, you’re expanding your capacity for greater good, greater abundance, greater love, greater connection. The other affirmation that I really like is “Every day in every way I keep getting better and better.” What that does is it expands your capacity and set point for success in your life.
Use these four strategies to expand your capacity for success in your life because you absolutely deserve it!
Here is to you living a life you love,