Embracing the In-Between: Understanding Liminal Spaces

Embracing the In-Between: Understanding Liminal Spaces

In the intricate tapestry of human experience, there exists a realm often overlooked yet profoundly influential – the liminal space. This ethereal terrain asks us to reflect on the very essence of who we are and what we know about the world. In this time of great revealing, many people question what they thought was Truth. And are learning how to navigate uncertainty in many areas of their lives. In this article, we will explore what a liminal space is, why it is so important, and ways to be okay with not knowing.

What is Liminal Space?

 If you are unfamiliar with the idea, it is a transitional space that arises on our passage through something. Usually brought on by a crisis or major life change, it is a time that forces us to be introspective and reevaluate our values, goals, beliefs, and life trajectories. Because of its destabilizing nature, it is a time often characterized by ambiguity, uncertainty and disorientation. 

A Rite of Passage

Most rites of passage are all but forgotten in these modern times. While we have retained some of them like, baptism, confirmation, or marriage. we have forgotten the value that these ceremonies and traditions once held. Helping individuals to embrace change, growth, and the pursuit of a deeper understanding of themselves and their place in the world. That passage between the acceptance of the call to change and the awakened transformation is the liminal space. 

Shedding Identities

Liminal spaces are the in-between spaces where an older version of ourselves becomes increasingly ill-fitted and yet the new version has yet to emerge. Because of the malleability of this time, it can be challenging to navigate. Part of this is because what we thought we knew no longer seems to fit and feels increasingly inauthentic. And partly because shedding old identities and stepping into new ones is, by its very nature, a destabilizing process. The ground is shifting beneath our feet and without a North Star to point towards, it can be a difficult time.

Want to Go Deeper? Read Time As Space

Metamorphosis

Think of this time as the pupal stage in the metamorphosis of a caterpillar into a butterfly. A caterpillar is born with imaginal cells that remain dormant until the onset of the transformation process. Once the caterpillar starts to undergo metamorphosis, the imaginal cells begin to awaken. But if you interrupt the process mid-way, it is neither a butterfly nor a caterpillar, just a big pile of goo.

Space For The Extraordinary

Traversing this space can take a few weeks to a year or more depending on the precipitating factors and how a person deals with the unknowing. In this liminal space, we need to allow ourselves to awaken what lies dormant within us and not rush the process. What’s inside of us might not yet be fully formed, and to push ourselves to figure it out, we risk settling for the ordinary. Pushing ourselves back into the status quo or not giving ourselves enough time for discovery. Shouldn’t we give ourselves the space to make way for the extraordinary?

Read Are You Experiencing an Identity Meltdown by Vidya Frazier

 

Tips For Navigating Liminal Spaces

  1. Acknowledge the liminal space: Recognize and accept that you are in a period of transition and uncertainty. Surrender to it and understand that is normal to feel disoriented, anxious, or confused.
  2. Stay Curious: Instead of resisting – Embrace ambiguity. Stay open and learn to play with ideas, thoughts, and visions without needing them to be the answer. Try them on, like you would a jacket, and see how they feel on you. Do they feel expansive or contractive? How much energy do they hold? Try to resist the urge to make them concrete but rather let them float in and out without attachment. There will be a time to take action, but that isn’t this moment. 
  3. Use this time to explore new perspectives, interests, or pathways. Take a class, read a new author, and learn something new. Engage in novel activities. If you’ve never considered yourself an artist, take an art class or try your hand at writing. 
  4. Seek support and connections. Invite your friends and family with you on some of these excursions. Explore new terrain with people you love. If you feel stuck seek out the support of a therapist or support group. 
  5. Cultivate self-care. Take care of your physical, emotional, and mental health by engaging in activities that bring you joy, relaxation, or a sense of meaning.
  6. Set small goals: Think about what you want to do for the day and set out to attain that. Having small, attainable goals can bring a sense of direction and accomplishment during a time when life may seem unpredictable or uncertain. 
  7. Don’t compare yourself to an older version. You are moving toward something new. This means new habits, new mental constructs, and new ways of being. That means that things will change. Comparing yourself to how you used to do things will hamper this process and increase suffering. 
  8. Be kind to yourself. You are in the process of awakening something very special.

In the intricate dance of life, the liminal space fosters the metamorphosis of the self. It is a realm where identities are shed, and we make way for the emergence of the extraordinary. As we navigate this terrain of uncertainty and transition, let us embrace the inherent ambiguity, stay curious and be open to possibilities. And in the midst of this profound transformation, be okay with not knowing. It’s not going to last and the experience itself is part of our journey. 

Brian Sachetta on Anxiety and Agency

Brian Sachetta on Anxiety and Agency

Subscribe on iTunesSpotify Google Podcasts or Spreaker

What role does the media play in fear? How does being accessible all of the time feed our anxious mind? Is the analogy of the mind as a computer useful for dealing with anxiety? In this episode, Brian Sachetta and Angela Levesque explore practical approaches to dealing with these uncertain times. We talk about the importance of anchoring our attention, using specific tools such as meditation, education and re-framing. We also talk about why agency and the power of choice is essential

About the Guest

Man with dark hairBrian Sachetta is an author, blogger, and software developer from Boston, Massachusetts. He graduated from Boston College in 2012 with a degree in management and computer science.

After college, Brian put his computer science background to use as both a consultant and a writer. His first book, “Get Out of Your Head,” draws parallels between computer systems and the human mind, and gives readers practical strategies for overcoming anxiety.

Much of Brian’s writing is focused on health, wellness, and personal development. He is passionate about using his skills to positively influence the lives of others.

Links

Getoutofyourhead.com

www.chaosandlight.com

Jacob Nordby on Self Love & Dealing with Uncertainty

Jacob Nordby on Self Love & Dealing with Uncertainty

How does uncertainty affect our creative capacity? Why do we become more narrow and rigid when things feel outside of our control? On this episode of the podcast, author Jacob Nordby and Angela Levesque touch on a variety of topics ranging from curiosity to creativity to self-love. Jacob shares a very personal story that illustrates our ability to find calm amidst a storm and how simply taking a moment to breathe can change everything.

Timestamp

Divine spectacle 2:20
Jacob Nordby 8:18
It’s Worth Your Time 1:12:05

Links

Blessed Are the Weird: A Manifesto for Creatives

About the Guest

Jacob NordbyJacob Nordby is the author of The Divine Arsonist: A Tale of Awakening and Blessed Are the Weird – A Manifesto for Creatives. His words have been translated into many languages and shared around the world. He leads the Creative UnBootcamp course for students around the world and offers transformational group retreats and individual creative guidance sessions. His third book, The Creative Cure, is set to release by Hierophant Publishing on February 16, 2021, with a foreword by Julia Cameron. Meet him at www.jacobnordby.com