The Hero’s Journey Step #5: Crossing The Threshold
“Toto, I have a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore” – Dorothy, The Wizard of Oz
In the history of storytelling in films, there has rarely been such an iconic scene as when Dorothy of black and white Kansas, steps into the colorful and shocking land of Oz. It’s a totally new world, one she doesn’t understand, feels unfamiliar (to say the least) or know how to navigate. She also sees it initially as a beautiful and welcoming haven, away from the dullness and danger at home. But she soon discovers that there are also dangers in OZ and things she needs to acclimate to and learn from this experience. With the help of Glenda, the Witch of the North and the sweet encouragement of the munchkins, she sets off on her Hero’s Journey to take it all on and, eventually, get back home.
Crossing the Threshold in the Hero’s Journey, is that initial step we take into a new reality. At times it’s something we set out to consciously create, like a desired career, relationship or a completely new way of viewing/doing something in our lives. Other times, it feels like it’s hoisted upon us by circumstances outside our control and jars our senses. Regardless of how it shows up, there is one wholly important element in navigating this new territory. Accept what is. Yes, I know..it’s hard, we want to fight, make it right and/or take us back to the way it was. But we are here now and there’s so much that we can accomplish once we accept current reality.
You know, acceptance, like forgiveness, gets a bad rap. We believe that it means we are giving in, powerless or condoning something that “shouldn’t be.” But developing an acceptance for what is, actually empowers us. As The Power of Now author, Eckhart Tolle, reminds us:
“Accept – then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”
And from this space of acceptance, we are able to make one of three choices:
- Accept it totally
- Change it
- Remove yourself from the situation
Take a moment to consider what threshold have you crossed recently. What new reality are you standing in front of, trying to grok? Got one? Now take a deep breath and lean into it. There’s an opportunity in facing it and choices for the future.
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- San Diego: 3/04 & 3/05 Linda O’Keefe, Mentor and Vanessa Elle, co-facilitator
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- Denver: 4/08 & 4/09 DesiRae Kraft & Linda O’Keefe, Mentors
- San Diego: 5/05-5/07 Linda O’Keefe
Thank you for all you do!