Six Open-Minded Views on Closed Doors
"willing to consider new ideas" - Oxford Dictionary
Open doors (symbols of opportunity) may close for many different reasons. The most common reaction is to knock, push, or shout—in the hopes that the door will swing open to allow the seeker to enter. If the doors remain closed despite efforts to open them, hope usually dwindles. But what if people stood outside closed doors with open minds? What if they expected to gain something positive from this unexpected situation?
Become a possibilitarian... See possibilities... for they are always there.— Norman Vincent Peale
Here are six of many possible positive views that may open your mind as you stand or sit beside closed doors. The result is usually an awakening to positive attitudes and new perspectives about your challenging circumstances.
Six Open-Minded Views
1. Challenge beliefs
2. Boost self-improvement
3. Evaluate patience
4. Offer redirection
5. Provide safety
6. Inspire humility
Imagine the challenges which confront unemployed college graduates who have been taught that education opens doors. They submit resumes and discover that doors to opportunities in their areas of study are closed.
Both youth and adults find doors that are closed to the healthy social affiliations and happy marriages they believed would result from following certain moral codes.
Will they discard their beliefs about the importance of education and morality? If all the doors they tried were open, they would not understand the significance of confirming their personal convictions in the face of apparent contradictions. They learn to think outside the box; and thanks to their experience with closed doors, they become the people who motivate others to develop confidence in themselves and the principles by which they choose to live.
As the year comes to a close, so do ventures and benefits which have year-end deadlines and expiration dates. Some people grieve over what might have been; they blame themselves or others; they curse at invitations they did not accept and coupons they never used. They get stuck in disappointment.
Meanwhile open minds focus on ways to improve. They wave goodbye to the past, and walk away with lessons they learned about the delays, distractions and detours which foiled the efforts of the previous year. They visualize improvement and build on their physical, mental and spiritual energy. They begin a new chapter with new, improved attitudes. Memories of the closed door remind them to move forward with a steady pace.
On a scale of 1 to 10, how patient are you toward closed doors?
Patience is an inner strength which keeps destructive emotions like frustration and anger at bay. When open doors are slamming shut and closed doors are being bolted, individuals in the midst of the dilemma demonstrate their level of patience. Do they react with a calm sense of purpose and determination, or do they throw temper tantrums and threaten to give up?
New ideas come to the minds which are peaceful, patient and open; and nothing evaluates these qualities better than closed doors. In his book Unlocking Closed Doors, Ikechuckwu Joseph states, “For every manifestation or success there was a waiting time.“ It is usually during this waiting time that the mind opens itself to the possibility of options. It is also during this restful time that patience grows.
At some point during the reign of closed doors, seekers with open minds begin to question themselves.
- "How do I know if this is the right path for me?"
- "Should I turn back?"
- "What might happen if I make a right or left detour?"
After self-examination and reflection, listing the pros and cons of possible options, consulting trusted counselors, the seekers usually decide their answers. They redirect their path with the assurance that they trust their own hearts, and that it is their prerogative to redirect again, if necessary. Studying the outcome of their decisions, they understand better the language of closed doors.
Exception: Domestic Abuse
Because domestic violence in all its forms usually takes place behind closed doors, it is advisable to mention here that the only accepted open-minded view for victims is to love themselves enough to walk away.
Unlike prisoners of war, efforts to fix, toughen up or improve themselves in this situation are not recommended.
Various forms of support, including financial, as well as understanding and compassion are requested on their behalf.
There is the situation in which closed doors keep people in instead of shutting them out. Even then, open-minded victims survive and grow.
John McCain, in his Prisoner of War (1967-73) account states:
"I had read a lot of history. I spent days on end going back over those history books in my mind, figuring out where this country or that country went wrong, what the U. S. should do in the area of foreign affairs. I thought a lot about the meaning of life."
"If you are going to make it, you get tougher as time goes by."
Without undermining the seriousness of his suffering in captivity, it is safe to say that even in that situation closed doors protected him from death at the hands of his fiendish enemies.
People who are shut in for other reasons than imprisonment may also owe the extension of their lives to the security of closed doors. Closed doors may cause delays and disappointments to which death is the alternative.
Other Views on Closed Doors
A clever, imaginative, humorous request can open closed doors and closed minds. - Percy Ross
Learn something new, whether you think you're interested in it or not. That's the opposite of having a closed mind or a closed door. - Donald Trump
We often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us. - Alexander Graham Bell
Closed doors are a test of our faith. Keep moving forward . . . you'll see amazing changes all around you. - Joel Osteen
Instead of feeling offended or deprived when doors will not open, open minds are wiser to embrace humility. Closed doors are part of the human experience; no one is immune to them.
- They may signal the time to pray for divine help when the need for guidance becomes obvious.
- They may not open, because they are not the right fit (too much or not enough) for one's purpose.
- They may remain closed to prevent distraction from the one that Providence proposed to open.
Closed doors are reminders that some circumstances are beyond human control; that mankind is submissive to a Higher Power.
© 2016 Dora Weithers