How do you know when you’ve reached your limit?


Image from In the Spirit

Many years ago, as a young teacher in Hong Kong, some of my colleagues and I practised a Friday ritual of ‘Happy Hours’ at the local ‘Someplace Else’. As there were four of us, it wasn’t long before we got dubbed the ‘gang of four’. You can’t accuse us of not being culturally (and historically) relevant.

It was in the midst of one of those ‘happy hours’ (two drinks for the price of one) and possibly on my second pina colada when the question arose in my mind “How do you know when you’ve reached your limit at anything (not just alcohol)?”. You’ll be pleased to know that along with the question, the answer also presented itself which prompted me to ask my ‘happy’ and earnest colleagues the question.

Several responses were provided but none of them were correct. In exasperation, they growled at me to tell them. I did and it had a momentarily sobering effect on all of us. I said ‘momentarily’.

Well, would you like to suggest an answer? Of course, I am bringing this up in the context of Lao Tze’s advice of the effects of excesses from my previous post. Anyway, do give it a go. I’d love to see what you come up with!

Lucy Lopez
Learning the Wisdom of the Tao post by post


2 Responses

  1. this is a question i pondered on a lot as a teenager. it brings to mind the story of icarus, and a quote from the lyrics of a song by “thrice”

    “how will i know limits from lies, if i never try?”

    it seems you will probably never know when you’ve reached your limit until you’ve exceeded it. that’s probably why making mistakes is so essential to the learning process.


    • Spot on Iktomi! And what happens once you’ve exceeded your limit is that…well…you’ve exceeded it and a new limit is set…which in time will be exceeded…It is the nature of life. We are forever expanding!

      Thanks for your response and for sharing the lyrics.

      Blessings, Lucy

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