“When one door closes, another opens; but 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
Now that the year is ending, It’s time to let go of the events of this year and look ahead to what will happen next year and who you will be. I think that's one of my favorite things about December 31 and January 1 - the reminder of the motion of life constantly moving forward.
I have the most trouble letting go of things, and I don’t mean that I hold grudges. I mean that I can’t forget the past and it’s incredibly hard for me to let people leave my life. This stems from a lot of fear of losing something, or more importantly someone who is important to me. Even though I have such a hard time letting go, there are also events and people I don’t want to look back on. But as Jean-Paul Bedard says in his article, “The Haunting of Our Past,” our past is our story, and “If our story is our past, and we are our story, isn't it unreasonable to expect that we can willfully sever a "part of us," like it were a diseased limb?” Basically, your past is a part of you and not something you can get rid of, just something you can move on from.
Yet, it is incredibly important to spend time with your past and not ignore it. There is probably a lot of hurt and a lot of joy, but the pain and disappointment is what you run from. “Lodged behind every pain, sorrow, or hurt, is fear -- the fear that we are not good enough, the fear of letting go, the fear of uncertainty, and the fear of acceptance,” says Bedard. The older I get, the more I see that pain is layered. It’s not just that I got hurt this year by this person. It’s a reminder of another time I got hurt similarly by someone else. Then, it’s just pain on top of pain, and it doesn’t matter if it’s something I’ve dealt with or not. Triggers to past hurt always comes unexpectedly and always will, but it’s something we need to accept and not run from. Bedard believes, “Acceptance and growth comes when I sit with my pain; caress my fears, for they are my most devote of teachers.”
The end of the year means a door is closing in your life. This could be good, or bad, or neither depending on how you look at it. Now is a good time to look back on the past year and reflect on who you’ve become and how you got there. Do you like yourself more now than you did a year ago? If you do, then you’re heading in a good direction. If you don’t, then it’s time you do something different.
Bedard quotes three people to remind himself of important lessons the past brings:
1. "Forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could have been any different, it's accepting the past for what it was, and using this moment and this time to help yourself move forward." - Oprah Winfrey
2. "Some people are going to leave, but that's not the end of your story. That's the end of their part in your story." - Faraaz Kazi
3. "New Beginnings are often disguised as painful endings." -- Lao Tzu
If you are optimistic, you believe that there is always another door open for you, whether one has already closed or not. For others, it’s not so easy to think this way. But I believe that first statement is true. I love the idea of an ending being a new beginning, and if this is true, then that means another door always opens when one closes. Life is like a hall of doors, and it’s your job to find the open one. If you can’t find it, then you’re probably still stuck looking at the closed one.
To see what I would find, I googled “move forward,” and one of the first things that came up was a thesaurus. Here are a list of words to use for next year: achieve, advance, attain, benefit, boost, build up, earn, expand, grow, improve, increase, make, obtain, pick up, produce, promote, reach, realize, reap, accomplish, complete, profit, progress, succeed. A lot of words, but just pick five that stand out to you, write them down, place it somewhere you will see it every day, and include those words in your New Year’s resolutions. Every new year and every open door is an opportunity for growth.
very inspiring......i didnt know i was stuck looking at a closed door. thank you for writing thisReplyDelete
You are very welcome. I'm glad you were inspired.Delete
I am not your best friend. I am an anonymous person that has never met you, does not love you and is therefore unbiased towards your work. Your should know that it was beautifully written <3ReplyDelete
PS. Your hair looked amazing today (not that I would know b/c we've never met)
lol, thanks anonymous person, my hair did look good today ;)Delete
And i'm glad you think it was well-written. I was greatly questioning that after I wrote it.
This blog reminds me of the saying," Pain is inevitable; but suffering is optional."ReplyDelete
It's important to mention that when one door closes and another opens, its for the better to walk through the open door. We always think if only the door in front of us wasn't closed, then we would reach what is best for us, or reach it faster, or reach what we once thought was best for us and thought maybe it just needed to be prolonged. But as you have explained, it is better to look for the open door rather than to linger at the closed one. And when we find that open door, we should find comfort in knowing that the door is open because we were meant to walk through it, and we should find comfort in knowing that the open door holds a far better future for us than the closed one, which is closed because we were never meant to walk through it. Moving on, moving forward, achieving, succeeding, advancing, growing... only comes when you have found peace in the doors you have walked through and the doors you have left behind. Great blog though, definitely a good thing to think about as the year comes to a close, and a new year begins.ReplyDelete
Thank you for your reflection on the topic. Thank you for adding that tid bit about wishing the closed door in front of us was open. Just because we want it to be open, doesn't mean that it should be. Doors in our life open and close for a reason, and we should try our best to accept it. It's hard sometimes though. But as you pointed out, it is comforting to know the open door does have a better future for us. We just need to walk through it. Thank you reading this, and thank you for your comment.Delete