It’s August. Tomatoes. Sweet corn. Last trips to the lake. State Fairs. School supplies.
My clients are counting down the days until school starts.
Other clients are taking breaks to give themselves much needed time to marinate before the speed train of fall leaves the station. August can feel like mush.
What the hell is happening? Why is August so weird?
In a word (actually, four words), August is liminal space.
It’s a threshold. A place in-between two identifiable states of being. The middle. A waiting place.
In many cultures, liminal space is the disorienting place in the middle of a ritual (e.g. a wedding ceremony) when the participants have left their original identity (e.g. single people) and have not yet been initiated to their new identity (e.g. married people). Liminal space is disorienting, ambiguous, and uncertain like being in-between jobs, waiting for a medical diagnosis, the time between evening and night, and hanging at the airport.
So if you’re feeling disoriented, uncertain and mushy, welcome to the liminal space of August. The plans you had for summer are behind you. The routines of fall have not yet begun. And here you are, wondering what to do.
These three strategies will help:
- Stay: Stay in the in-between place. Be present. Be aware. Take the pressure off yourself to be anywhere other than here.
- Prepare: Use the time to get ready, to set the ground for what’s next. Do things behind the scenes, work on your website, clean out your files, go through your email, and return calls.
- Innovate: Do something creative. Work in a park, bring ice-cream to a meeting, conduct a brainstorming session, ride your bike to the office. Stimulate new ideas by trying something different.
Then as the weather cools off and we leave liminal space for routine, your foundation will be set and you will be ready to go.
I hope this helps.
P.S. If you feel like you’d like some support or know someone who could use support as they navigate a liminal space, schedule a free 30-minute session with me. Sign up here. I can help.