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When I read The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks last year there was a lot of new information to process, and the ramifications of learning it were unclear to me then. As I’ve moved on from the sea change in my life that I talked about last week, I looked back at my notes to find out how my shift in perspective informs on what I read then, or reveals some new level of understanding. I discovered six important lessons that I want to share with you in hopes that it helps you broaden your understanding of just how your limiting beliefs–or Upper Limit Problem–affect your own life. Mentioned: Free the Dream Conference hosted by Cliff Ravenscraft.
1. The Upper Limit Problem is Real
“Some part of you is afraid of enjoying positive energy for any extended period of time. The thoughts you manufacture are guaranteed to make you return to a state you are more familiar with.” – Gay Hendricks
Any time that I experienced those positive feelings my subconscious would inevitably bring me back to inadequacy–and it wasn’t just inadequacy, but a sense of being defective–of being cursed.
2. Solving the Upper Limit Problem Requires a Leap of Consciousness
“It cannot be solved by gathering information or replacing one set of information with another. The ULP must be dissolved by removing its false foundations.” – Gay Hendricks
No matter how much I would listen to Tony Robbins or Cliff Ravenscraft about changing my emotional state by changing my focus, or how many legitimately positive and healthy things I could list, it wasn’t until the source of my Upper Limit Problem was revealed that I understood why I had self-destructive behaviors. Simple intellectual understanding won’t get you there.
3. Getting Past Substitutes
“Getting past the ULP means creating space within us to feel and appreciate natural good feelings, rather than substitutes from alcohol, sugar and other short-term fixes.” – Gay Hendricks
When we are in the practice of seeking our own physical pleasure, we open the door for a chemical addiction to endorphins and dopamine as strong as any addiction to mood-enhancing or pain-killing substances. If we do not begin to understand on an emotional level the pain we are actually experiencing, we cannot overcome these substitutes.
4. We Automatically Reinforce Our Own Self-Image
“Human beings absolutely follow through on who they think they are. The strongest force in the whole human personality is the need to stay consistent with how we define ourselves.” – Tony Robbins
The implications of this are huge. Our subconscious mind operates in such a way that it will seek to reinforce what we believe makes us who we are. The reason I did not feel like I was making any progress was because I was fighting against the strongest force in my own personality. It wasn’t just that I thought poorly of myself, but that I believed fundamentally that I was deficient.
5. Limiting Beliefs Can Affect Your Children
“There’s no money to be made in music, don’t you know.” – Grandpa Mac
My great-grandfather is famous for having said this at some point in the sixties. My Dad and his brothers were all talented musicians and singers, and exhibited that talent to varying degrees over their life. This saying was often referred to with a knowing smile and a laugh, and at the outset we know the heart behind it, but this statement tells two insidious lies. The first is that making money is the chief aim of a person, and that someone can’t make a living pursuing what makes them happy.
6. Practice Your Unique Gift for its Own Sake
“In the Zone of Genius, you have no need for your ego… you don’t care about getting approval, getting control, getting even, or any of the other get-oriented goals of the ego. You’re a free agent there, ready to respond to the infinite possibilities of the present moment.” – Gay Hendricks
All we need to worry about is doing what we are uniquely gifted to do for its own sake. It’s why we exist! Validation from others is the manifestation of our Creator telling us that we are on the right track, doing what we were made to do.