Push Or Pull?

It seems I face this difficult question every day of my life. Most of the time it’s okay: I’m with friends, I feel safe and I can usually make the right decision. It’s when I’m alone or with someone I’m trying to impress with my door opening skills that the problems begin. Here are some ways I’ve learned to avoid this dreaded situation.

Pay Attention

  • Always be on the look out for signs. Signs are the best! They tell you exactly what you need to do. Just remember to keep your head held high and your eyes open. Why, you ask? For one thing, you’ll look confident. But even more importantly, you’ll be able to read the sign. Signs are awesome. Signs are your friends. 
Be Gentle
  • If you aren’t 100% sure which way to open the door, try to check it out discreetly by gently pushing or pulling it. You’ve got a 50/50 chance, sure, but act like you aren’t even thinking about the odds. If you guess wrong, Do Not start crying! It will give you away. Just pretend you changed your mind about using the door. There’s nothing awkward about being indecisive.
  • Seek out places that have the best kind of doors...swinging doors! They go both ways so you can eliminate the guesswork. Just do what you feel is right at the time. Be yourself. If you want to push, go for it. If you want to pull, pull to your heart’s content. This door invites you to do whatever you want. This door is even better than signs.
No Tears
  • No one is perfect. You won’t open doors correctly 100% of the time. So when you do fail to make the right decision, just smile and laugh it off. The worst thing you can do is fall to the ground crying and say, "I can’t do anything right" Instead, turn toward whatever stranger is now going to be looking at you...and give a smile and a wink.  Then be sure to remember whether you pushed or pulled the door so that you don’t make the same mistake!
Push/Pull Door Sign by Sign Fail via Etsy


  1. Hehe. This post will actually come in handy in Switzerland, since the way a door swings seems to be regulated by no rule whatsoever.

  2. haha this is awesome! one time my mom and I were in an airport and we stopped by the bathroom, on the way out she was in charge of the door and began to pull on the handle (when it clearly said push) and then started to panic yelling Alexis!! we are stuck!!! omg we are going to miss our flight!!! I finally yelled through her panic mumbling um.. mom..PUSH! hahaha! it was so freaking funny!

  3. Hee hee! Also, try not to crash face first into doors that you didn't realize were there because they were so sparkly clean that they looked invisible.


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