As one door opens

The saying is that as one door closes another opens, a positive and inspirational quote first said by Alexander Graham Bell that people seem to use when your life isn’t going too well and they want to make you feel less terrible about yourself. You didn’t get that job you wanted or you didn’t do as well as you hoped in something? Well don’t worry because as one door closes another opens. Basically, don’t give up because you’ll get a better opportunity soon.

But why do we say it so often? And have you ever wondered just how many doors do open and close in a day? I set out to see just how many doors I go through in an average day, and what I could learn from this. As a student my average day consists of a lot of walking and navigating my way through other crowds of students late for their lectures; and having all of my lectures situated in buildings as far away from each other as possible, meant I soon found out- a lot of doors.


When I woke up getting ready for my busiest day of the week I soon noticed that my flat has a lot more doors in the building than I realised. I overslept so was in a rush to quickly get ready and was darting in and out of my room, the kitchen and the bathroom – meaning I’d passed through 3 doors in the space of 5 minutes. After finally gathering myself together, I went through another door to exit my flat, and another to exit the building and I was finally ready to keep tally of my daily door-to-door experience.

Door count: 5


Before I started my day I had to collect something from my university common room and funnily enough the layout consists of the main door, two sets of double doors and another two doors inside the building. Something I would never have noticed if I hadn’t been counting. In fact I soon started to realise it was a lot harder to keep track of than I thought. Setting out my prediction for the day hadn’t been too high but I’d already passed through 10 and it wasn’t even lunchtime.

Door count: 10

  set of doors
So many doors in one corridor


Arriving at my first lecture the lecture hall consisted of opening the main door, a dark staircase leading to another two gloomy sets of double doors. An hour later, mid lecture it was time for a well-deserved break cutting through the emergency fire exit door (terrible I know, but it was a shortcut) and into another building to grab a quick coffee and go to the toilet

Door count: 18 (if we’re including the toilet door)

Late Afternoon

As I walked to my second lecture of the day I noticed that most buildings seem to have an abundance of long corridors split up by double doors, something that until today I had never noticed. In fact when I started the day I naively thought I wouldn’t need to make an actual note of how many doors I passed through because it would be a number small enough to keep in my head, oh how I was wrong.

But door counting was proving to be quite an enjoyable and distracting from my work task. When my friend asked me what I was doing and I enthusiastically replied “counting how many doors I open a day” I was greeted with confused looks, but I powered through knowing that this task was much more fun than my looming amount of work waiting for me at home.

Finally I headed home after a long day and navigating my way home in the dark and the rain, a friend of mine drove past and kindly offered to give me a lift home. Car door included I was pretty amazed at how high the final door count was.

Final count: 28

When I started at 9am I expected the final count to be about 15 maybe, but I was pleasantly surprised by just how many doors you do go through a day (and how many people held them open for me too). So maybe we can all learn something from this, the saying might just be true after all.

If you can open and close as many as 28 doors a day you never know what new and exciting opportunities can await for you on the other side. So looking at this pretty optimistically, I am feeling pretty good about my future and myself for now.