OPEN THE DOOR!

I have always heard the saying, “If life closes the door, open a window.” Which made sense to me. Sometimes the way we think things should work, are just not the way they do work. On occasion, we need to look for alternative ways in which to approach a situation. Never have I stopped and thought about the aspect of the actual act of a door closing. Of course, in these sayings this is actually a metaphor. Still, it holds true whether in a metaphor or in reality. If you knew inside a room was a million dollars just waiting for you, no strings attached, and suddenly the door closed in front of you what would you do? Would you say, “Oh well, that would have been nice.” and walk away? Would you start to look for that ‘window’ or another way in? In most cases, when faced with that situation in reality, the first thing most of us would do is reach out and try the door handle. If it didn’t open perhaps we would investigate why. Even if we found the door to be locked, we may try forcing it open or picking the lock.

Why is it then, when faced with this metaphorical situation in life we seldom try to open the door? Is it due to a lack of passion? Perhaps our why is not strong enough? It is said Walt Disney was turned down by 300 banks before his loan to open Disneyland was approved. That is a lot of doors that were shut on him. In some cases, past experience has taught us we cannot open the door. Maybe that was true then, but think of how much we learn each and every day. With additional skills and experience we very well could open doors that in the past remained closed to us.

Another thing to consider is perhaps we are approaching opening the door in the wrong way. Has this ever happened to you? You see a store with its lights on and the open sign on. You walk up and pull on the door, it’s locked. You look inside and see people wandering about. You pull even harder thinking the door may be stuck. No such luck. You step back to review the hours of operation on the door and find they indeed should be open. Ready to yank on the door with all of your might, you must step aside for another shopper. This person walks right through the door…by pushing it. Sadly, I must confess this has happened to me on a few occasions. Doors in life are much like this. We can pull with all of our might and never get in. If we change our approach and push with even the slightest effort, in we go.

Think of doors that have closed in your own life. Have you tried to open them? Have you changed your approach? Before we give up or start looking for a window, perhaps we should give that door a pull, and a push as well. You know, just in case.

PROBLEM OR POSSIBLY?

Yesterday we spoke of our ability to choose happiness or sorrow. Sounds easy on paper (or computer or phone however you read this) In reality however, it is one of the most difficult challenges.

Enter the picture above. I hear so many people go on for hours explaining to me a problem and how bad it will affect their lives. When I ask them “What are you going to do now?”. Almost without fail I receive the same three word answer, “I don’t know”. So let me get this straight, you have spent enough time thinking of how bad it is to tell me about it for an hour, but when I inquire as to what solutions you might have explored you simply do not know.

I am not putting anyone down here. This used to be something I did quite often. On occasion, especially at the onset of a challenge I am still likely to do this. With every challenge and bit of bad news in life there is what I like to call a mourning period. Take a little time, have some self-pity. Notice I said a little time. You can say “this is not fair!” or maybe even “why me?”. Then realize life can not be fair. Sometimes it is just your turn. Everybody has things and periods in their life that just, in a technical term, suck. We all do, it is called life. It is what we do and what we choose to see in those challenges. That separate different kinds of people. It is a chance to show your true character. In fact, Les Brown, one of my favorite authors and speakers advises to never say you are having a bad day instead say you are having a character building day. It is a chance to show the world you are tougher than what life can throw at you. Perhaps it is a chance to let your friends have the satisfaction of helping you. We all like to help and feel we have been of use to someone, but are afraid to give someone else that opportunity.

Remember, problem or possibility it is all up to you.