23 Feb Are You On the Verge of Something?
MEAx Australia | Are You On the Verge of Something? | 23rd February 2022
Liminality is defined as a place of ‘in-betweenness’ or, “the ambiguity or disorientation that occurs in the middle.” It’s that feeling of being betwixt and between or in MEA speak …. it’s the messy middle.
The word “liminal” comes from the Latin root word “limen,” which means “threshold” or “transitional” … and it can sometimes manifest in the feeling that you are on the verge of something. This feeling of being ‘on the verge’ often manifests itself around midlife … as we vacate old ways of living and being and explore and reimagine new paths.
Liminal spaces can feel uncertain and scary but within them there’s this incredible potential and opportunity to innovate, think critically, be intentional, challenge the status quo and look at the world through a fresh set of eyes without yielding to the constraints of a script that we feel like we need to follow or the trap of just following the way things “ought” to be.
By no means is liminality a walk in the park. Caterpillars don’t just spin a chrysalis and magically start growing pretty wings. They basically meltdown into a soupy moosh first, after which their ‘imaginal cells’ take over and organise the other cells to reform into the butterfly they were born to be. It takes time and effort to become a butterfly. And so it is with people, as we shed an old skin and retreat into our transitional cocoons, strip back all the layers and wallow in a mire of midlife moosh. Only after this has happened can our own ‘imaginal cells’ get to work to reimagine the shape of who we might become.
Liminality is messy and uncomfortable but it’s also full of potential for growth and there’s a skill in learning to sit within its uncertainty … to hold the space to allow for change and transformation…. to be intentional and imagine what’s never been.
As Brene Brown says “the middle is messy but that’s where the magic happens.”
The MEAx Team