The Secret to Opening Doors

Now the problem with most personal development blogs is that they don’t have much in the way of really useful practical advice. So every now and then, rather than simply mocking personal development, I am going to post something that can really help to change your life in a positive and beneficial way. Today’s post is about doors. Now to make things clear, I’m not talking about metaphorical doors, I’m talking about real and solid doors.

I have a problem with doors. I’m pretty certain that most people do. I sincerely hope that I am not alone here. Doors are tricky. They’re sneaky little bastards. They’re the weasely little kid at school who knew exactly how to get everyone else into trouble. That bastard that knew exactly when to stop throwing stuff before the teacher turned around. And they’ll never bother to humiliate you unless they are sure that someone else will see it.

I was never that kid. I was the poor sod who should have shut up about 30 seconds prior to the teacher standing behind him. Perhaps it’s a timing thing. Doors require timing. There is the whole open, close thing going on with a little movement in the middle. Sometimes I get the order wrong.

Do not feed the door
Do not feed the door.

In fact, I am the only person I know who has managed to give himself a concussion by opening a door into themselves. It was a toilet cubicle door, which didn’t give me much room to move out of the way as it was coming at me. It was also a much lighter door than I expected. Luckily, I didn’t pass out and fall backwards into the toilet. Instead, I returned to kickboxing training feeling very stupid and slightly dizzy. It took weeks for the cut to heal and the mark to fade. Such door-related disasters have become par for the course in my life.

Here’s an inordinate amount of steps to help you learn the secrets of door opening:

  1. Approach the door carefully, this is the time where you should be weighing up the intentions of the door, is it likely to do something sneaky to you? Probably, it is a door after all, approach with caution.
  2. Look out for subtle clues on how to use the door. These include keypads, swipe card slots, and other forms of lock. The presence of these should alert you that this door might not open.
  3. By the time you are an arms length away you should have worked out if it’s an automatic door. If it’s opening, wait for it to open and step through. Otherwise, extend arm towards the side opposite the hinges.
  4. Next look for push and pull signs. Another clue is you are rarely expected to pull a door with a vertical, flat metal plate designed for pushing. You are only ever expected to push a door with vertical handle designed for pulling if someone else is watching.
  5. Extend arm carefully and apply the relevant pushing or pulling motion. With many doors you will have to do a turning of the wrist motion on the door handle. This will enable the opening of the door.
  6. If you are opening the door towards you carefully take half a step back to avoid the door attempting to occupy the same space as you are currently inhabiting. If it’s a push door you will be required to take half a step forward in order to push the door a significant distance to create a gap through which you can pass.
  7. Once the door is open then you may proceed to walk through it. If you are letting someone else through the door, for example holding a door open for a lady person, you will need to keep hold of the door handle and let them pass before attempting to walk through it. It is usually difficult for a door and two people to occupy the same physical space at the same moment in time.
  8. Once you have walked through the door it’s best to let go of the handle. Holding onto the handle whilst attempting to walk away can at best damage the door handle, or more likely, cause you to damage your own shoulder in the attempt.
  9. Congratulations! You have successfully navigated another door. Rinse and repeat for all other doors.

Please share any significant door disasters in your life in the comments box below… I don’t want to be in this alone.

Image courtesy of visualdensity