Not now!

As someone rightly said, “If it weren’t for the last minute, I wouldn’t get anything done.”. I do not know where to start really! It seems like yesterday when I was thinking of writing down something and then something else came up…and before I had realized, I actually, postponed and later forgot about what I was going to write about! This was not unusual and certainly not the first time that it had happened. Much as I dislike to admit, I will be honest enough to state that I procrastinate! Now do not get me all wrong here! Although I do put off certain things/ tasks/ jobs…..surprisingly that is not always the case. Of course, life will be pretty disorderly if that was always the case.

I am successful as far as keeping up with the daily routine in life is concerned. However, I feel a little perplexed if a challenge comes along -usually like a change in the daily plans. I am basically not a fan of drastic changes……change is good but it is best only when it is slow, gradual and little by little. Well, seems to me that it is a lasting change if it is taking time to settle down in our lives. So, as I am analyzing my take on “changes aka challenges in life”, some part of me is saying that this is actually procrastination! What can I say. I am not one of those who take the bull by its horns and get over with it.

Besides procrastination, I know there is something more, that is at times, holding me back. I think I am one of those people who have vast interests and hobbies but they never seem to last long. These seem more like phases in my life that hold my attention only for a brief period. I am amazed at people who have pursuits and hobbies which they keep for maybe as long as they live. As I am writing this post I can recall how passionate I was about baking, cooking, stitching, watching the latest movies, working out at the gym, photography, teaching kids and even writing. Although, I still somehow manage to enjoy most of these interests, but what lacks is the consistency that should be there. There is always something more that I could have done or may be something even better. Perhaps, this is the result that I no longer cherish a particular task and forget about it pretty conveniently.

As I conclude my post, I have this to say to all of you. For each one of us, life is different and diverse in its own way. Just live your dream, do your best, and not be held back by the daily routines. What has to be done has to be done, so why wait? Time is on your side only if you make it yours.

Courtesy

“He who sows courtesy reaps friendship, and he who plants kindness gathers love”. These words of wisdom form the theme of my post today. Merriam-webster defines courtesy as: “behavior marked by polished manners or respect for others”.

Many a times there are things that we do not give much importance to or take for granted. For instance common courtesies such as greeting and welcoming someone, saying please and thank you, and even replying to e-mails on time or returning a call, hold great value. These seemingly trivial things can really affect our lives in a big way. I believe that the seed of mistrust can be planted if the right response is not given at the right time. We must at the same time be polite with others- the ones we know and even the ones we do not know that well. After all that is what courtesy is all about.

While we expect others to be courteous, we must be cognizant of the need for ourselves to be courteous and polite. In the fast-paced world, while it can be challenging to keep up with commitments, it is equally important yet easy to communicate instantly. Certain situations require speedy communications and a delay sometimes implies rudeness.

Having discussed the importance of courtesy and timely communications, courtesy also demands that such beautiful traits are instilled in individuals from childhood. It surely becomes much easier when something like common courtesy becomes a habit. Acknowledging someone for what they are or what they do positive is a nice habit that does wonders in creating lasting friendships.

Published in: on May 24, 2011 at 2:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Quality husband

There are all sorts of them – loving, caring, not-so-caring, etc. They come in all shapes and sizes :). They may not all look like prince charming (especially after a few years of marriage) but what matters most is what lies in their hearts and how they treat their wives. Muslims consider Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) as the best example. Little is often known even amongst Muslims how he lived a wonderful life with his wives. The relationship between a husband and a wife is a complex one and like any relationship if not nurtured and given attention to, can easily become not so pleasant.

Regardless of who we are, there is a desire to lead a happy married life full of love, trust and compassion. While it is common to hear what an ideal wife should look like, here is something for all the hubbies out there. Here are a few points adapted from an article I read earlier. I would suggest all husbands to pay heed to these.

  1. Dress up for your wife, look clean and smell good. When was the last time you went shopping for designer pajamas? Just like the husband wants his wife to look nice for him, she also wants her husband to dress up for her too. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) would always start with Miswak when returning home and always loved the sweetest fragrances.
  2. Use the best names for your wife. Call your wife by the most beloved names to her, and avoid using names that hurt her feelings.
  3. Don’t treat her like a fly. We never think about a fly in our daily lives until it ‘bugs’ us. Similarly, a wife will do well all day – which brings no attention from the husband – until she does something to ‘bug’ him. Don’t treat her like this; recognize all the good that she does and focus on that.
  4. If you see wrong from your wife, try being silent and do not comment! This is one of the ways the Prophet of mercy (pbuh) used when he would see something inappropriate from his wives (R.A). It’s a technique that few Muslim men have mastered.
  5. Smile at your wife whenever you see her and embrace her often. Smiling is Sadaqah (charity) and your wife is not exempt from the Muslim Ummah. Imagine life with her constantly seeing you smiling. Remember also those Ahadith (sayings) when the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) would kiss his wife before leaving for Salah (prayer), even when he was fasting.
  6. Thank her for all that she does for you. Then thank her again! Take for example a dinner at your house. She makes the food, cleans the home, and a dozen other tasks to prepare. And sometimes the only acknowledgement she receives is that there needed to be more salt in the soup. Don’t let that be; thank her!
  7. Ask her to write down the last ten things you did for her that made her happy. Then go and do them again. It may be hard to recognize what gives your wife pleasure. You don’t have to play a guessing game, ask her and work on repeating those times in your life.
  8. Don’t belittle her desires. Comfort her. Sometimes the men may look down upon the requests of their wives.
  9. Be humorous and play games with your wife. Look at how the Prophet (pbuh)  would race with his wife Aisha (R.A). When was the last time we did something like that?
  10. Always remember the words of Allah’s Messenger : “The best of you are those who treat their families the best. And I am the best amongst you to my family.” Try to be the best!

In conclusion, never forget to make Dua (supplication) to make your marriage successful.

Published in: on March 27, 2011 at 3:02 pm  Comments (1)  
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Positivity

Today’s post is dedicated to all the words related to positivity and goodness. I view positivity at the core of a happy and content life. We all have problems and issues to reckon with. However, those who are able to make the most of the finite time are the ones who really succeed. The utilization of time must be made with a positive attitude. Small things such a smile can do wonders.

Wise choice of words can make a big difference in our lives and the lives of others. Most importantly, words also need to be translated into action. Following are the words that come to my mind at this point:

Happiness, Smile, Charity, Goodness, Health, Kindness, Forgiveness, Clarity, Fairness, Respect, Contentment, Humility, Confidence, Love, Admiration, Generous, Energetic, Courteous, Helpfulness, Beauty, Bliss, Friendly, Terrific, Trustworthy, Honest, Wonderful, Decent, Calm, Caring, Considerate, Ethical, Efficient.

I am very sure we need to not only use these words more often but also display these characteristics in our lives. Nothing can be better than spreading goodness all around us!

Don’t grieve

Jalal-Uddin Rumi (1207-1273) — Turkish Sufi Mystic Poet & Iqbal’s spiritual teacher

Don’t grieve. Anything you lose comes round in another form.

Friends are enemies sometimes, and enemies friends.

I was a tiny bug. Now a mountain. I was left behind. Now honored at the head. You healed my wounded hunger and anger, and made me a poet who sings about joy.

If your guidance is your ego, don’t rely on luck for help. you sleep during the day and the nights are short. By the time you wake up your life may be over.

Let the beauty we love be what we do.

Let the lover be disgraceful, crazy, absent-minded. Someone sober will worry about events going badly. Let the lover be.

Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love.

Most people guard against going into the fire, and so end up in it.

My friend, the sufi is the friend of the present moment. To say tomorrow is not our way.

Nightingales are put in cages because their songs give pleasure. Whoever heard of keeping a crow?

No longer a stranger, you listen all day to these crazy love-words. Like a bee you fill hundreds of homes with honey, though yours is a long flight from here.

No mirror ever became iron again; No bread ever became wheat; No ripened grape ever became sour fruit. Mature yourself and be secure from a change for the worse.

Become the light.

Only from the heart Can you touch the sky.

Patience is the key to joy.

People of the world don’t look at themselves, and so they blame one another.

Since in order to speak, one must first listen, learn to speak by listening.

That which is false troubles the heart, but truth brings joyous tranquility.

The intelligent want self-control; children want candy.

The middle path is the way to wisdom.

The only lasting beauty is the beauty of the heart.

Thirst drove me down to the water where I drank the moon’s reflection.

To praise is to praise how one surrenders to the emptiness.

We come spinning out of nothingness, scattering stars like dust.

We rarely hear the inward music, but we’re all dancing to it nevertheless.

You think the shadow is the substance.


Published in: on February 28, 2011 at 4:46 am  Leave a Comment  
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I know you, you know me?

Today I wanted to talk about a very thought-provoking and important issue. A friend of mine narrated an incident to me about her dining experience at a restaurant. When the waitress came to take the order she did not look at my friend and started speaking to my friend’s husband sitting at the other end of the table. For a moment my friend thought that the waitress would eventually look at her and ask her what she wanted from the menu. She realized that instead of asking her, the waitress was asking her husband. So she spoke up and said, “excuse me, what about my order?” To her surprise, the waitress replied in an excited tone, “O…So you can speak English….?” Hearing this, my friend’s husband smiled and said that not only does she speak English but she is also a medical doctor. The waitress’s somewhat cold attitude changed all of a sudden.

The reason for narrating this incident was to bring attention to what we may all sometimes do as human beings – stereotype. In this regard one of the most common observations is that people tend to judge others by their appearance. So if a woman is observing what she believes in, wearing an Islamic headscarf out of her own free will, she does not automatically become any less intelligent. Also knowing English is not a qualification. In fact it is a language that we use to communicate.

One way of getting rid of steoreotypes is by having more interactions with people whom we think as “different”. When we tend to assume things about other people, we actually close a door of communication and lose a wonderful opportunity of knowing somebody who belongs to a different cultural background. This could happen from any side. If we really think that we are all that different, then think again! We may be brought up in different set of circumstances, yet we all have same human emotions and same thought processes. Maybe everybody has a role to play in ensuring more harmony and understanding in the world. By letting go of our prejudices, we will be surprised how similar we are!

Published in: on January 30, 2011 at 7:36 pm  Comments (2)  
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