In the past, I’ve written about liminality — being on a threshold, neither here nor there, and the tremendous freedom that comes from that. However, like any place we might find ourselves, there can be a dark side.
Sometimes, we hover in a liminal place as a way to reduce or manage anxiety about crossing that threshold, be it large or small. Maybe the other side of the threshold is as seemingly small as a medical appointment. Our fear that we might hear unwelcome news might be so overwhelming that we end up harming ourselves by staying in the liminal state, avoiding the doctor and mitigating anxiety to the detriment of our greater wellbeing.
I see this dynamic play out quite a bit when meeting and talking to prospective residents who are looking to make the jump to Bayview or a similar type of life plan community.
From the other side of the threshold, it’s easy to see how crossing it is the best move most people can make. There are so many opportunities for growth and discovery in a supportive and socially engaged environment that if one waits until one believes it’s time to move because they have to, they’ve missed out on years of transformative living. Delaying decisions to live in that liminal state of mitigated anxiety crushes opportunity for the continued growth of the self.
Scottish mountaineer William Hutchison Murray famously wrote, “Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative and creation, there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too.”
Whether it’s a commitment as large as moving to a life plan community, or as small as making that medical appointment, it just takes one small step to create the pathway for magic to happen.
Stepping out of the liminal zone and crossing the threshold does not require extreme acts such as burning the proverbial boats as instructed by Sun Tzu in “Art of War.” Rather, just one small step when one makes the decision to proceed can get things moving in a direction that will ultimately lead to greater things.
It just takes one small step to cross a threshold. What small step will you take in 2023 that will lead to transformation? If you need any ideas, drop me a line; I have a few.
Best wishes for a most fulfilling and joyful 2023 to all Queen Anne & Magnolia News readers.
Nancy Weinbeck is the CEO of Bayview in Queen Anne.