Book Review: The Big Leap

The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks

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I'm so inspired to share this amazing book with you today called "The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear & Take Life To The Next Level" by Gay Hendricks. I listened to it back in December and have re-listened to it 2 more times since then.

It really struck a chord with me and allowed me to break past some barriers I've subconsciously put up in my life that keep me from propelling forward. I wanted to share it with you today in hopes that it may inspire you in your life.

The big theme of this book is that in our lives, we have a limit for how much joy, love and success we allow ourselves to feel and accept - a limit that is shaped early on in our lives. That when things happen in your life hit the ceiling of your limits, you subconsciously self-sabotage yourself, make bad decisions, start thinking negative thoughts - anything to lower yourself back down to the level of happiness and success that you are most comfortable being in.

Pretty big, huh?

There are 4 barriers Hendricks talks about that get in our way. Some of us have more than one:

  • Feeling Fundamentally Flawed - The feeling that you are somehow flawed which will ultimately lead to failure, and if you do succeed then it won't be good enough.
  • Disloyalty and Abandonment - That if you succeed in an area of your life that you'll be abandoning  your roots and leaving people behind. You feel guilty when you succeed.
  • Believing that More Success Brings a Bigger Burden - You can't expand to your highest potential because then you'd be a bigger burden to people than you are now.
  • The Crime of Outshining - You will make someone feel or look bad if you shine. You turn down the volume on your genius or you allow yourself to shine but don't allow yourself to enjoy it.

Do any of these resonate with you? A few do for me, the biggest one being "the crime of outshining". Noticing this and working on it have already started to help me raise my limits.

Hendricks then outlines ways that you upper-limit yourself. That when you reach that ceiling in your life, these things creep in: You start to worry about something or someone. You criticize and blame either yourself or someone else. You deflect compliments. You get sick "out of the blue".

When these things happen, the best thing to do is to ask yourself "Where do I feel out of integrity with myself?", "Where in my life am I not telling the complete truth?".

For example, if you really don't want to go to that party, but you've said yes, you may get a cold the day before the party. You were out of integrity with yourself because you said "yes" to the party invite vs. "no", which is the truth - that you really didn't want to go.

Another key thing this book tries to help you discover is what your genius is - that thing that makes you unique and different from a lot of other people. That thing that when you do it, time stands still and it doesn't feel like work at all. That when you do this, it produces the highest amount of satisfaction and payoff in your life for the amount of time you spent doing it. That thing that you most LOVE to do.

The key is to discover it and then be able to focus on activities that are within your zone of genius. To say "no" to things that come into your life that don't fit within your zone of genius, so you can be freed up to have more time in that zone, resulting in the biggest impact in yours and others lives.

Lastly, he talks about Einstein Time which is the concept that you are where time comes from. That we need to take full ownership of the things we are choosing in our lives to commit ourselves to. That you have the power and choice to choose what you say "yes" to.

This one has been a big one for me, and I've still got a long way to go in fully realizing this in my life. I am a pretty structured person. I make my to-do list. I push myself through tasks and deadlines. Sometimes I can whip through tasks, sometimes things are just hard and take forever. What this concept is beginning to allow me to do, is to let things flow. To listen to my "wants" instead of my "shoulds". And when I do this, time stands still. I'm able to move from task to task and get a huge amount of things done because I'm doing them when I actually feel like doing them, rather than forcing them into a rigid schedule.

Yes, things still get done on time. Procrastination goes out the window. Allowing myself to listen to what is exciting myself at that moment and going with it is allowing me to reap huge rewards in my productivity. That, and saying "no" to the things I really don't want to do - which if I'm being honest, sometimes takes more guts then I have at the moment. But growth is a process, right?

I absolutely enjoyed this book and I've already found ways to apply the themes into my life and have slowly but surely been able to raise my ceiling for how much joy and success I'll allow myself to experience.

If you are someone who enjoys psychology and is comfortable looking at yourself and examining your inner life, this book will be an absolute gem for you and is a must for your reading list! I'm not a 'woo-woo' kind of person but I am very comfortable examining myself and I found this book extremely eye opening! I hope you get a chance to get your hands on this book so you can raise your limits too and bask in more and more happy and positive things in your life!