Transforming Your Life Through Liminal Space

Life
October 22, 2020

Can you believe that we are living in an alternate reality? The liminal space could be more real to you than you know it.

  1. Liminal space is the transitional space between the past and the future
  2. It can either be a physical liminal space or a state of the mind
  3. How we handle liminality determines what our future will become

Many ambiguities come with being in a liminal space. “Tomorrow is unknown,” it is one adage that speaks to the heart of many. To find yourself, you must lose yourself. However, what happens when you are finding yourself? That blur moment sparks a new change.

All these form part of being in a liminal space. Many have tried to define a liminal space, but a worthy definition is yet to be found. The obscurity that defines a liminal space leaves many to find their own meaning.

What Is Liminal Space?

The word “liminal” derives from the Latin, meaning “threshold.” It means we are all standing at a threshold. At the threshold, we cannot choose to either go back or move forward. It is the moment our inner demons come alive.

We spend a better part of our days trying to suppress our inner urges and desires. Some are because these desires or urges do not fit societal expectations. The more we suppress them, the deeper it grows. Once we are stuck in this liminal space, our inner demons break free.

There is one thing that can come out of the liminal space. You find opportunity. You can use this opportunity to mark a transformation in your life. Civilization is in a constant quest for transformation.

Examples of Liminal Spaces

Liminal spaces are mostly physical spaces. One might have an awkward feeling while visiting the place.  It might take some time before you find your liminal space. Some examples of liminal spaces include the following.

Physical Space

The first form of liminal space is in the tangible realm. It involves playing around with physical points like:

Stairwells

Stairwells present spaces within a threshold. It takes you from one point to the other. Ever wondered that cringe moment when walking a fleet of stairs a night? That could be a liminal space.

Empty Parking Lots

Have you ever been the last person to clock out of a job? The lot is not your destination, but space you must go through to reach your other destination.

Abandoned Buildings

It presents a space without function. It is a cringe feeling to think that, at one point, the building were homes to families with memories still intact.

Non-Physical States

Apart from places that offer liminal qualities, some experiences we go through force us to make a decision that will put us into a liminal space.

Divorce

Marriage is a lifelong commitment that supposed to last a lifetime. Divorce breaks the journey, and it seems like two unfinished lifetimes hang in the balance. When it happens, it can leave one lost in a space where they are trying to get off.

Job Loss

Having a job presents security in once life. Losing your job leaves you in a difficult space in your life. Trying to figure out your next course of life and leave you with sleepless nights.

Moving to a New Place

As much as moving to a new place is a physical aspect, there is the mental space that comes with it. You must prepare to fit into the new space and leave the memories of your old place behind.

Why You Need a Liminal Space in Your Life

Despite the obscurity that comes with being stuck in the liminal space, there is a ray of hope. We are tied with struggles from different phases of our lives. It is either through our relationships, quest for money, and peace.

We become so tied up in the quest that we cannot find space to be ourselves. Most people think of going on a vacation on a cruise ship. It is much more than that. Being yourself is understanding your being. You need time to reflect on your entire existence.

The liminal space presents a gateway where you can just be. While caught up in the liminal space, you are surrendering to a higher force. You become an intermediary between a dying existence and a new one.

Interaction with the Liminal Space

We encounter the liminal space more often than we think of. Take a moment and reflect on your life these past few days. When was the last time you felt you had nothing to do in life? When was the last time you had to fight off boredom, fear, or the feeling of the vulnerability? Do you ever get that sensation of sheer creativity, deep rest, or imagination?

These factors point to the power held by the liminal space. It takes courage and determination to take one through the liminal space successfully. It is going through these experiences in life that we come out stronger.

You need to learn to surrender to the power of the liminal space. Do not fight it, embrace it. It holds a deep sense of realization that leads to transformation. You become unharmed to whatever life has to throw your way.

Liminal Time

There is a fraction of time whenever we are stuck in the liminal space. The liminal time is not counted in seconds, minutes, or hours. You can be stuck in the space for a whole lifetime without your knowledge.

When stuck in the space, it is up to you to use the liminal time to find your purpose. You become aware of the environment around you. All of a sudden, the shrieking pain of a bird makes a lot of sense to you. You become in-twined with the outside world together with your inner being forming a close-knit connection.

In case you entered the space due to a traumatic experience in life, you will have to relive the moment. In case you lost your mother, while in the space, you get to live her last breathing moments. It is a powerful force that brings you in touch with what could be holding you back. It is up to you to surrender to the force to transform.

At some point, we need to be pushed to the limit to discover our existence’s true. A traumatic experience cannot define you, but you must first overcome it. The experience is not registered on a date, but it marks the experience’s point of awareness.

The Power of the Liminal Space in Transforming Lives

Do you have anything that you could change in your past life if you have the power to? Well, the liminal space is not a time machine. It is much more of a time freeze machine. It cannot change your past, but it can make you have peace with it.

The liminal space takes us out of our ordinary lives. It brings us to our point of awareness without hinting what the future holds. It is like the radical transformation from a caterpillar to a butterfly.

The caterpillar stops eating and hangs on a leaf to turn into a cocoon while molting into a shiny chrysalis. Inside the protective casing, it transforms radically and comes us as a butterfly. It is hard to know what happens inside the chrysalis.

We tend to stitch ourselves into the cocoon without any consciousness. We do not know how long we will be inside the chrysalis or when we will come out. The lack of idea of the force drawing us is what makes the liminal space special.

Start of Transformation

You can take the liminal space as a calling from the unknown. We do not know why we are called, but all we can do is heed the call. Transformation starts when we are not in charge. We have to lose our sense of control. That is what happens when we surrender to the force that is beyond our understanding.

The liminal space is a getaway ticket from our existence. It roots us from all the core foundations that ground us. We wake up in a new spectrum where we have no control over all that happens around us. We have to let go of all that we believe define us. It is through this lack of being that we are molded into a new, truly transformed creature.

Liminal space is a recipe in the making of the evolution of humankind. There are many things we are unaware of. The fact that things do not exist in our lifetime does not mean they don’t exist. The main idea is surrounding to a higher force that dictates what the type of people we should become.

New Beginning Phase

After going through the rollercoaster of uncertainty in the liminal space, opportunities are abundant. They await at the end of the tunnel. The feeling coming out of the phase is marked with anxiety and a lot of uncertainty. You feel the gravity of what you were and the new person that is lining up.

It is accepting to surrender to the force and taking on the uncertainty that comes with it. Then something inside you changes. Your inner being starts to accept the transformation taking place, and it reflects on the outwards.

Your form a stream of innovation surrounding the uncertainty. You become open to trying new ideas that bring different solutions. Your creative thinking process comes to its peak. You break away from the shackles that used to hold you back.

  • The transition marks the point where you become in peace with the changes that are taking place
  • Taking the journey to go past the threshold marks the beginning of a new phase in your life
  • The transition from the threshold sets the pace for how you will live your new life

Part of the journey includes going through the fear and pain that life brings to our doorstep. Accepting it marks the nurturing of a new being.

Liminality When Going Through a Mid-Life Crisis

The transition through this liminal space of mid-life crisis is often confusing. Through this process, one starts to feel like finding their identity.

Liminality provides the chance for one to know the direction. It gives you the chance to know when to move forward with life. Liminality makes one apprehensive when it comes to making life-defining decisions.

Gender Liminality

Women tend to occupy a liminal space in the manner that they try to fit into the masculine practices deemed normative to the male gender. Women experience their liminal status in negative ways, such as the fight for the quality workplace.

Women battle the liminality by adopting the normative roles handpicked for males through a form of resistance. The women feel lost in a battle where the male gender does not understand the negatives of working under normative hierarchies.

Get Professional Help from Expert Therapists

Are you stuck in the liminal space and need professional help coming out of it? Online therapy is here for you! Learn more about how you can go beyond the threshold from a licensed therapist — no need to attend a physical office for therapy.

Start online therapy and get matched with a professional. Calmerry is a professional online therapy platform that offers therapy services to clients. Fill a request form and get a professional to help you through the liminal space.

Kate Skurat

Kate Skurat

Licensed Mental Health Counselor

Washington, United States

Kate has a B.S. in Psychology and M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Pepperdine University and has worked in healthcare since 2017. She primarily treated depression, anxiety, eating disorders, trauma, and grief, as well as identity, relationship and adjustment issues. Her clinical experience has focused on individual and group counseling, emergency counseling and outreach. Read more.

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