Have you ever heard someone say something like, “If it doesn’t open, it’s not your door?”
This quote I don’t entirely agree with. You might be at a door that won’t open, but maybe you’re using the wrong key, or perhaps the door is wedged a little and you need to push on it harder.
Opportunity can be an obstacle. That obstacle can be a chance to learn to get through it, come up with a new approach, or develop a strategy to take you in a new direction.
I love obstacles. I love to problem solve and brainstorm and figure out a way to muddle through the hindrance. Because on the other side sometimes is the answer or technique you’ve been looking for, even if it is just the first piece.
This is probably why I loved inventing so much, and why it took me so long to move on to other things. Now I explore puzzles like how to make a certain piece of cat art turn out the way I want it (which can take anywhere from a few hours to days), or tweak something in my writing biz (which again isn’t limited to a time constraint). Even in my day job working through issues is the norm, and I am grateful that I thrive on problem-solving so much.
If a door doesn’t open for you, try searching for a different key, or a way to make a window and see what’s on the other side. I’m not saying all closed doors are meant for you, but don’t give up too early. Lots of endeavors are won by the people who are slow and steady, who push through obstacles, chisel away at seemingly closed doors, and keep marching forward until their goals were achieved. You don’t have to be the most talented, but you do have to be hard working.
This goes back to the concept of getting your 10,000 hours in. In Malcolm Gladwell’s book “Outliers,” he talks about how the greats didn’t become great overnight; they put in the time, they practiced, and eventually they got their chance to shine. And his book showed that generally they all put in 10,000 hours of practice and hard work to get to where they are. (Outliers is a great book by the way if you want to read it. I do recommend it.)
So don’t fret. It takes a while to get somewhere, to open all those seemingly closed doors. With enough time and effort, perhaps they will open for you someday. Perhaps they will open for me as well.