Are You a Threshold Dweller?


One of the greatest benefits from identifying the Life Chapters of your Life Story by naming the phases that have occurred BETWEEN your pivotal Turning Points is that this brings you naturally to a position of being a Dweller at the Threshold, in Joseph Campbell’s terms (as in The Hero with 1000 Faces).  We each live always in the Present Moment, most often as if the Present is a bubble, like the bubble in a leveling tool, relatively sealed off from yet positionally linked to Past influences and Future potentials. Life Mapping can open your awareness to how the “Past” (i.e., your meaningful Life Chapters with their inherent Life Lessons) has carried you to both this Present Moment and to the potential “Future” that your Life Path is trending toward. Your mindful awareness places you at the precipice of embarking upon or unfolding more consciously into a future Moment of your own choice and envisioning; see?

Water level

If we are to constructively affect the course our life is taking—and I personally believe this is not only our right but our responsibility—we may step forward from this Threshold of awareness that links Past-PRESENT-Future into a more integrated Whole.

water level

Being a Dweller at the Threshold, you have the opportunity to pause and to reflect; to scan the Past while envisioning the future course you desire to undertake in your continuing Adventure.  There will be another, big step to take after this, called Crossing the Threshold (stay tuned for later tools and for the Life Paths book to engage in the full process). But at this fertile, vital junction of  reviewing your life course to Now, you are able to discern meaningful trends and potentials you have already established in your unique Life Story.


I have observed in over a decade of helping people compose and reflect upon their Life Maps a very common trend. However difficult a person’s life may have been, a high percentage of people (not all) reconstruct their CURRENT Life Chapter as either at a state of Balance or as a Resolution stage after successfully negotiating earlier hardships and challenges. How about you? If you have named your Life Chapters based on the methods shared on Tuesday, what title have you given to the CURRENT Life Chapter you are in? I welcome your sharing about your own Life Chapter titles or experience.


Next week we will expand this discussion to the topic of “Life Story Genres”.  This might help you to contextualize the dramatic quality of your personal life experience.  It is a natural cognitive function of the human mind to reconstruct our life experiences in Story form. Neuroscientists believe this helps us establish a sense of coherence and “flow” to our stream of life events and it helps us to construe our sense of identity as a continuous, integrated Self. So, please stay tuned to Sunday for an introduction of our next topic of discovering your Life Story Genre.

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Horse Crossing Bridge

I’d like to add two remarks today. First, I’d like to express my gratitude to GraphicStock, the website at which I have found most of the images I use in this blog. For an annual fee I have discovered a rich well of images to represent the ideas being presented here.

Also, as it is Thursday and I’m mounting the Friday blog, as usual I am a day ahead in posting. (When I receive a story about applying these tools or find a very appropriate piece to re-blog, I will also post a separate Thursday blog, as happened last week.) My work schedule makes it easier for me to post in the afternoon or evening the day before a post is scheduled, so thanks to you, dear readers, for your patience. – Linda

11 thoughts on “Are You a Threshold Dweller?

  1. Hi Linda,
    I find it interesting that most people describe their current life chapter as balanced. I wonder if they would have answered the same if you had asked them when they were in mid-turmoil? Thanks for a great read, Linda!



    • Hi Joey,
      Many even in the midst of current turmoil tend to see themselves as at a stage of resolution or near resolution after reviewing their whole life story to Now. Not all, as some do construct a Tragic rather than a Comic narrative, which I’ll discuss a bit next week in relation to Life Story genres. Those I have worked with who are Bipolar do tend also to reconstruct the Present as a state of relative balance after reviewing their lives to Now. Yes I find this interesting too. I believe –as Hillman might — that the process of reconstructing one’s Life Story is a potentially therapeutic process in itself.


  2. I see my life as a journey, one foot in front of the other, with mistakes along the way. Every day or moment can be a pivotal one of change, depending on how I decide to view it, how I add it to my internal narrative. Do I allow events to change me or my path choices or do I merely observe them, and ultimately ignore them? I don’t think I can know how events will affect me until they have passed and I have perspective. Having the ability to see one’s present as balanced is probably a useful survival skill, that helps one control anxiety and fear of change. For instance, I have sent out two pieces to publishers, and I would dearly love one or both to like them. If I succeed in being traditionally published, I believe my internal landscape will change, and I will see this as a time of change. Yet, if I am rejected, the event will become part of a larger, longer-term struggle to find success. That may be part of another change one day, if I give up, but will not end up being itself pivotal.


    • Excellent insights, Brenda! The road of being a Writer is a wonderful case in point. We look for ways to translate passion and hard creative work into a message that will have a positive potential by being shared as widely as possible. The Present as a Bubble often means we simply keep moving ahead but without necessarily advancing or pushing beyond that bubble…whereas being at the Apex, the Threshold experience, can allow us to see more clearly what next step is ‘needed’ in order to let that next action make a DIFFERENCE in relation to our highest goal or intention. Being traditionally published could open your talents to a wider readership, a wider set of persons who may benefit from your deep artistry and inspiring insights on life. Self-publishing can also be good, especially in some specialty genres via Amazon or so…but to me anyway, I feel the agent and editors’ editing suggestions will improve the final product and my goal is to reach as wide an audience as possible with material of a quality an expert editor will want to share. Instead of struggle ( a postulate), maybe figure the universe/ Spirit is giving you SOMETHING with every step–whether it is all out acceptance or a clue as to how to approach the editors or agents. I went to 3 writing workshops over a 5 year time frame to fine tune the approach that ultimately did lead me to a wonderful agent. Never Give Up! Know that with your good work and fine intention, Spirit WILL lead you to the Way to share your brilliant work!


  3. I´ve had some harsh times in life. Some chapters of my life I don´t dwell on them, like the one in the military, but other chapters like being a drunk and homeless I do reflect on them and have realised how I got to that point. I also know how I got out of that situation, but the alcoholism…that´s a day to day battle that I can´t truly say that I will win forever. If you have a solution for that, tell me. Or maybe the solution is just that, a constant day to day battle to not go back to the bottle.


    • Hi Charly,
      Thank you for your reflections and for your honesty. I would not presume to offer defiinite solutions or therapy, ever! Your reflections do show you have the capacity for resilience and resourcefulness.


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