“When one door closes another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, we do not see the ones which open for us.” Alexander Graham Bell
I remember being at National Conference and hearing Cindy Monroe, our CEO and founder, talk about running through the doors of opportunity. I have to admit, it was a little scary for me (and sometimes still is). For me, it meant stepping out of my comfort zone, having faith things would work out and most of all being willing to make a change.
Over the last few years, I have seen many doors in my life close. They may have been open for a minute but I hesitated or FEAR stopped me. Those doors have closed and despite my best efforts, nothing is going to open them again. Yes, I have lingered way too long staring at the closed door, wishing for what could have been all the while missing new opportunities.
Has a door recently closed in your life? Have you lost a job? Maybe a relationship or marriage ended? Maybe you were hoping for a chance at a new opportunity and it fell through? The door you wanted to remain open is now closed. Are you still staring at the closed door? Chances are, if are are, like me, you’re going to miss the new opportunities waiting for you.
I totally get those closed doors are sometimes are own fault – we let fear take over, we didn’t want to step out of our comfort zone, the list goes on right? But there are those times when change is brought on by things beyond your control. It is those times I find are the hardest to get back on track.
So, here are some tips I found which might help:
1. Mourn the loss.
Grief is part of the process when an unwelcome change intrudes on your life. It can be devastating. Give yourself permission to grieve the loss – whatever it is. Then, acknowledge the lessons you’ve learned. Yes, there are always lessons to be learned. Once you’re done, pick yourself up, dust yourself off and move forward (start all over again). Are you humming a Disney song? Feeling sorry for yourself will do nothing but send you on a downward spiral to self-sabotage.
2. Make a decision to face forward.
Are you hoping the door will reopen if you hang around? Guess what? At some point, you have to stop lingering at the closed door. Chances are it is NOT going to re-open. So, walk away and take steps on the path unfolding before you. Face forward rather than backwards. Would you drive your car backwards if you missed a turn? Believe it or not, change can offer new hope and opportunity. A decision takes courage. For many, it a step out of their comfort zone or having faith in things unseen. Courage is a choice. Will you make the choice?
3. Be open to change.
Be careful of the comparison game. Don’t compare new opportunities to old opportunities. Recognize new opportunities sometimes have very different benefits from old ones. They sometimes address different needs and wants, bring you joy in ways you were missing before. Sometimes they stretch you in ways you haven’t been stretched. Embrace the challenge with gratitude and perseverance.
4. Walk through the open doors.
New life, new work, and new opportunities will open up on your path. Walk through them! Know you are not alone when you walk through those open doors. There are others on the same journey if you are willing to embrace the opportunity.
I know you have heard it before but it bears repeating….. Sometimes doors close because we are not supposed to walk through them. Other times, they close because they were meant only for a season. Just like people enter our lives for a season. We need to learn the lessons, live with courage, and enjoy our journey. I know it isn’t always easy.
Face forward. Stop staring at the closed door and take a step towards the future that is waiting to unfold.
What is the “closed door” in your life? Are you ready to leave the closed door alone and trust a new and better one will open?
Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!