This could be your leap year.

by Jan on January 23, 2012

When one door closes another door opens, but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.”
~ Alexander Graham Bell

Mr. Bell, inventor of the telephone, wanted the world to communicate across vast spaces. He also realized that the spaces within us are just as important. His simple words are a “call” to look at what needs to be put in the closed file and to relish the opening of new doors, which have the promise of opportunity and fewer struggles.

It is a little like spring-cleaning—when we look at what needs revision, deleting. This means taking an inventory of what we are holding onto that prevents us from opening the new door.

Sometimes we keep our foot in both doors; keeping our foot in the old while reaching for something new. It is not possible to span the gap between that old way and the new way without actually taking our foot out and letting the door close completely; stand in the dark for a moment (this is the scary part) before we can go forward through the door that is opening. Take my friend Michele for example.

Facing Facts.

Michele hated the facing the fact that she HAD to leave the beautiful house that she had poured so much love into. But the time had come. Facing foreclosure she put her house on market. But it didn’t sell.

Then, after months of struggling to let go of her “dream,” she went to a yoga-like class. It was the instructor ‘s intention for everyone in the class to RELEASE everything that was not needed anymore. Michelle decided to let go of the dream of her house. By noon that day she had a buyer!

Panic set in. Where she was going to live? Would she be homeless? She almost gave up hope that she would find the right space for the right money. But Michelle let go of the panic, and began to trust that it would work out.

That is when an old friend connected her with someone who provides alternative funding for housing. He accepts clients based on intuition rather than financials. It was possible for her to open a new door.

A space that had been empty for months showed up. It was drab and unappealing. Michele, a caterer, could see that by transforming the kitchen she could do cooking classes. There would be more space for the big meals with her family on holidays, and a place to share with the man who had proposed to her on Thanksgiving.

By the time the holidays hit, she had closed on her new home.

Her circle of friends includes an interior designer who created a color palette she would NEVER have used. She became truly enchanted. Another friend came to paint the whole house for her. It all started to work out better than here first dream.

All of us experience challenges and difficulties at one time or another. It’s part of being human. Russell Bishop, psychologist and executive coach, who’s had his share of challenges, believes “life is really more like a trust walk than anything else….that your ability to trust actually becomes a source of freedom and creativity.“ His business failed 3 times, his wife left him and he lost his house. These closed doors actually created an opening for a new job and a new love.

“Sometimes a whole lot of things have to be removed in order to make way for the next level of opening. Whether it’s a house or a spouse.

Bishop’s practice of hope during difficult times:

1. Keep your eye on what’s possible
2. Keep your spirit up
3. Trust that whatever has befallen you is actually going to turn out OK
4. Stay open
5. Let go of what’s in the way
6. Never give-up on yourself

Good luck—and let me know what door you open!