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Personal Best Karate

What Does Holding a Door Open Really Mean?

Posted: June 15, 2022

When I was younger, it was always reinforced to me to hold the door open for an adult. I never questioned the reasoning, rather it was just what I was asked to do as a child, so I took it at face value and did it. It became a habit, and it continues to this day with me always wanting to extend this small level of assistance to another. 

When I look a little deeper, the act of holding a door open is an act of humility. It says to the person that you are happily putting their need above your own. It is an active practice of being present even if only for a moment to pause and let another pass.      

Holding a door open can provide a display of honor in the case of a person with a higher degree of authority than you. It can be a small expression of love to a family member. It can be a sign to a friend that you will always be there to assist him and to a stranger, it can be an acknowledgment of their importance without the expectation of future favoritism.

The small respectful gesture of holding the door open is symbolic of the humility with which a person carries themselves. Small actions that are done consistently reinforce beliefs and become part of an individual’s code of conduct. After all, there is no respect for others without humility with oneself.