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Six Open-Minded Views on Closed Doors

Ms.Dora, a certified Christian counselor, explores facts, attitudes, and habits that can help us maintain our physical and mental wellbeing.


"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

Photo by Dili Osuhor

Photo by Dili Osuhor

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

(1) Beliefs

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.

(2) Self-Improvement

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.

(3) Patience

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.

Patience Poll

(4) Redirection

Photo by Dietmar Rabich

Photo by Dietmar Rabich

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.

(5) Safety

Photo by Maliz Ong

Photo by Maliz Ong

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."

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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.

(6) Humility

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.

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

© 2016 Dora Weithers


Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on September 07, 2019:

Well said, Scott and I agree. Closed doors remind us that we do not have total control. Thanks for your input.

promisem on September 06, 2019:

Dora, I think our culture suffers from a mentality of, "I can do anything I set out to do".

Some age, wisdom and experience shows that that is not quite true. So a degree of humility is helpful in accepting closed doors and finding new ones to open.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on August 27, 2017:

Besarien, I appreciate your kindness and encouragement. Glad the article affected you positively.

Besarien from South Florida on August 27, 2017:

I think I felt possibilities in the universe expand while I was reading this. I can't imagine a closed door that could withstand you, Ms. Dora. I do know whatever is on the other side of that door would be missing out.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on February 04, 2017:

Haider Mama, thanks for your encouraging comment. Glad that I reached you and hoping that your attitude towards closed doors will improve in your interest.

Haider from Melbourne on February 03, 2017:

This sentence in the first paragraph pushed me to read this hub. "But what if people stood outside closed doors with open minds expecting to gain something from the unexpected situation?" Do you know MsDora how strong this sentence is to me!

You described this topic eloquently and I appreciate you for this. Great hub!

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on January 12, 2017:

Shauna, thanks for adding another view. I appreciate your inspiring input.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on January 12, 2017:

Very empowering article, Dora. Another viewpoint on closed doors is that there is no closed door that can't be opened. Sometimes it takes tenacity and conviction to open those doors if they truly lead to where you want to be.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on January 08, 2017:

Bill, your comment encourages me. I think Christianity has to be practical in order for it to be effective. Thank you for your kind comment.

William Kovacic from Pleasant Gap, PA on January 08, 2017:

Every time you write, you bring so much practicality. Good points to ponder, and good points to apply. Thanks, MsDora.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on January 07, 2017:

Thanks Teaches. Perhaps acceptance of closed doors comes only after acceptance of our human limitations. We don 't know and don't fully understand everything. I appreciate your input.

Dianna Mendez on January 07, 2017:

This is a wonderful view on closed doors in life and your analysis on each is right on. I have learned to view a closed door as an answer, but not always what I expected. It is sad to think for some it cannot be accepted. God bless you, Ms. Dora.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on January 05, 2017:

Mary, isn't it amazing how much we can learn just by being open-minded? Thanks for your input.

Mary Wickison from USA on January 05, 2017:

I loved this. I especially liked the part about patience. I never associated it with those who are prone to bouts of anger or temper tantrums but it makes sense.

I try to stay open minded and know in any situation I can learn.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on January 03, 2017:

Thanks Denise. I value your opinion. Have a great New Year!

Denise W Anderson from Bismarck, North Dakota on January 02, 2017:

Closed doors are tough to face. We feel that we are a failure, or even perhaps that we are not "good enough." This article gives a viable alternative that is much more productive!

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on January 02, 2017:

Nell, I couldn't have said it any better than you did. Closed doors sometimes throw us into surprises. Thanks for your input.

Nell Rose from England on January 02, 2017:

I love this! and yes you are so right, open your mind, do stuff that you didn't think you would like and sometimes you may surprise yourself.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 31, 2016:

Peace Cosmas, welcome to HubPages. Thanks for your kind comment about the article. Glad you like the picture as much as I do.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 31, 2016:

Artravel, if we gained some inspiration for every closed door we meet, we would grow. Thanks for your comment and a Happy New Year to you, too!

Peace Cosmas on December 31, 2016:

Wonderful piece. The colour combination on that picture is superb.

Arai from India on December 30, 2016:

As usual, an inspirational and informational read.

Wish you, A very Happy New Year!

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 30, 2016:

James, thank you very much for that inspirational illustration and a great summary sentence. You added another open-minded view.

James C Moore from Joliet, IL on December 30, 2016:

A door was closed on basketball legend Michael Jordan when he failed to make his high school basketball team. It looks like he and his career survived that setback. Sometimes, a closed door is not the end but instead the beginning. Inciteful hub.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 30, 2016:

Thanks, Alicia. Usually, I need the advice I share, and am happy when a reader appreciates it. Happy New Year to You, too.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on December 30, 2016:

As usual, you've included some great advice in this article, MsDora. Thank you for sharing it. In addition, thank you very much for sharing the thoughtful and important exception about domestic violence. Happy New Year to you!

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 30, 2016:

Thanks, Rev. Glad that the article proves informative and useful. Happy New Year!

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 30, 2016:

Robert, thanks for reading and commenting. If the prisoner was left out on no man's land, there would be nothing and no one to prevent his enemies from killing him. Behind closed doors, those who decreed his imprisonment were responsibility for his safety; they were limited in the type and amount of abuse they could dish out.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 30, 2016:

Bill, Happy New Year, and thanks for your kind encouragement throughout the passing year.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 30, 2016:

Sally, thanks for adding your wise take on closed doors. Happy New Year to you, too.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 30, 2016:

Eric, I agree. After some reflection we may detect an opening that we did not see before. Thanks for your input.

Dora Weithers (author) from The Caribbean on December 30, 2016:

Flourish, Happy New Year to you and yours. Thanks your your continual encouragement. Our thoughts about the senator are similar.

Margaret Minnicks from Richmond, VA on December 30, 2016:

MsDora, I enjoyed reading your article. It contained a lot of good information that we can use as we go into a new year. Thanks for doing such a good job!

Robert Levine from Brookline, Massachusetts on December 30, 2016:

Thank you, Dora; I needed this.

That said, I don't see what the closed door was that prevented John McCain from being killed by his captors.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on December 30, 2016:

What a powerful read to begin my day with. Much to think about here, Dora. Thank you and Happy New Year to you.

Sally Gulbrandsen from Norfolk on December 30, 2016:

MsDora, a very thought provoking and interesting Hub.

We have all experienced closed doors at some time in our lives but then no one ever said that life would be straight forward or easy! I guess it is this which helps build our character:)

I absolutely love the top image of the beautiful lady and her outfit in this Hub. Those colours are just gorgeous and set my creative juices spinning.

Happy New Year MsDora, I hope yours will be a splendid one for you and your family.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on December 29, 2016:

Splendid. I think is good to reflect on what we think is closed to us. Just maybe I am wrong.

FlourishAnyway from USA on December 29, 2016:

I especially liked your inclusion of Sen. McCain. Although I do not agree with his politics, I am in awe of his heroism and strength. This is a beautiful article, MsDora. I am also glad you included that domestic violence exception. Have a Happy New Year with good things ahead!

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