Don’t Rush the Messy Middle

Tunnel between here and there

The in-between.

The space between no longer and not yet.

The tunnel with a light far in the distance.

That is an uncomfortable space to be in. It is human nature to want to rush it, get through it as fast as possible or pretend that you should be “somewhere else by now.”

I have never really liked that liminal space. (Definition: the precipice of something new but not quite there yet.)

In the past I have tried everything I could think of to hurry it up, get that clarity/next thing now (vs. waiting), or numb out to the discomfort by engaging in distractions or addictive behavior.

It never helped.

It only took away the richness of that “seems like nothing is happening” and yet “so much is really happening beneath the surface” middle.

Like the crème inside a donut but not as evident and often not as fun.

There are no signs when you are trusting the process that say (hint: – you’re in the crème donut aisle you just don’t know it yet).

That is why it is called “trusting the process.” Because it can be hard, challenging, and take so much longer than we want it to (at least longer than I want it to!)

Hence the TRUST part.

You might be wondering, what can I do during this transitional space then?

Here are some things I have found truly helpful – whether it is a big or small “in-between”.

  • Be quiet
  • Rest more
  • Allow yourself to get restless and let it be ok
  • Let the restlessness turn to boredom and let that be ok too
  • Reflect
  • Buff up your current reality (physical space, habits, mindset)
  • Create and then destroy as necessary
  • Experiment
  • Learn something new unrelated to whatever part of your life might be feeling in-between
  • Journal
  • Walk outside without doing anything else (talking, listening to music/podcasts/books)
  • Do some foundational work – on yourself, your processes, your business systems
  • Clean out the clutter and things that no longer serve you (physical, digital, mental)
  • Take a break, disconnect, and pay attention
  • Get support from someone with perspective

For much of the world this liminal space is very real right now. As pandemic turns to endemic – the world will never be as it was, it is not reached a different flavor of “normal” (whatever that means anyway), and yet each day we’re expected to do all the things. Work, play, love, and show up.

Personally, I am also marking 15 years in business. A weird, hard to believe milestone. It’s ripe with some reinvention and returning to the core of things.

  • Noticing all the learning.
  • Celebrating the current me that the past me could only dream of.
  • Asking what future me wants me to know right now.

With that milestone, I’ll be doing a few celebratory online events. If you’d like to get the skinny on what I’ve learned drop your name in the box below:

What is on your mind these days? What do you most want to know? To learn?

How do you navigate your own liminal spaces?

Meanwhile – Lean into the rich space between what was and what will be. This isn’t waiting for the next part of your life to start, it is living this part right here right now.

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