Upper Limit Problem-TAKE 2!

Upper Limit problem. Take 2.


I’ve been thinking about Upper Limit Problems A LOT since my last blog. Once I understood how ULPs affect me, I couldn’t stop noticing them. I was experiencing an ULP many times a day EVERY DAY.

EVERY. DAY.            Several times a day.




I devoured the book, The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks, identified how my ULPs control my behavior, connected my ULPs with patterns I experienced as a young person and have perpetuated on my own as an adult, and finally (whew!) thought I had it all figured out. My productivity level soared and then came to a screeching halt…or at least that’s what it felt like to me.

Hendricks writes about how diligent we need to be in order to change the habits of our ULPs.

progress_not_perfection_copy copyMelissa Lopez, author of this blog and perfectionist extraordinaire, thinks she should be able to change her habits as soon as she identifies they aren’t helpful.

Insert an ULP. Let me describe one of my most utilized self-sabotage strategies:


Work non-stop and feel productive because the only way to feel productive is to work non-stop and then crash. After a week of getting a lot accomplished and feeling GRRREAT, feeling like I have my shit together, feeling good about myself and the changes I’m making, I slow down…or at least I FEEL like I slow down. Then, rather than noticing everything I’m checking off the old to-do list, I start to notice everything that’s not getting done.

That’s when the panic sets in and Gloominous Doom 56 Gloominous Doom(That’s my ego. I named him. It’s helpful to have a name for the voice in my head. Please, don’t worry. I do my best NOT to listen to him. I’d much rather follow my gut, my intuition. Her name is Penelope Dreamweaver!) begins a rant about how I will never get everything done, I am lazy and disorganized and I don’t follow through…and the list goes on and on.penelope-dreamweaver-faerie




So let’s break this down:

1. I achieved a level of balance between my Work, study, love and play that felt good to me. It felt sustainable and exactly like what I want in my life.

(YES!! You’d think we’d be celebrating, huh?)

2. Somewhere in my sub-conscience, I triggered my ULP. I honestly don’t know that I’ve ever experienced balance in this way before…or maybe it’s more like the flow. I was totally in the flow and connected in such a new way, that it freaked a deep part of me out.

3. In order to diminish the level of happiness at this new state of balance, I started looking at everything NOT getting done. This triggered Gloominous Doom, the voice in my head, to start his “Melissa Sucks” rant. His rant triggered feelings of anxiety and just feeling bummed out. That feeling seeps into every other area of my life.

4. Then I remembered that while reading The Big Leap, I committed to find my ULPs and create new habits that allow me to “Expand in abundance, success, and love every day, as I inspire those around me to do the same.”

As I write this, my chest is still a little tight and all things left undone are still undone. However, I honestly shared with you how I’m feeling. That feels better. I’m remembering that there are a whole’lotta folks out there feeling like this too and not all of them have the resources and support I do. That feels better. I remember that just remembering, just doing something different is practice enough.

I’ll be writing lots and lots over the next few weeks about this whole ULP thing and what I’m noticing as I break through these boundaries I’ve created for myself. Please share if you’ve discovered any ULPs in your life and then join me on this year long exploration of how I/we hold ourselves back from achieving the life we want. Wonder what I’ll discover? I’m nervous. And excited.

??????????????????????????????????????????????????Will you adventure with me?

Leave a reply