Living a paradox

This whole post is just gonna be a reflective look on my life in the recent past and right now. 23/06/2017

I guess right now in my life I feel the most confident I’ve ever felt but also the most insecure. Over the past year or two I’ve learnt a lot of lessons about myself and just what works to live a good, progressive life.

I know how important kindness is. To love for the people around you what you love for yourself, to appreciate and just be selfless, to uplift others when they need it without expecting anything in return. I know all this yet I find myself feeling selfish at times and wanting to have the upper hand over others, I feel like I want it to always be about me when thats exactly what I should be avoiding.

I know how important gratitude is, to show thankfulness to god for the endless blessings he has provided me with, the endless opportunities and bounty. Yet I find myself empty, always feeling like nothing is enough. I feel like I’m the most unfortunate person at times, highlighting things I think I lack in and also believing that only I have certain deficiencies, only I carry a certain curse.

I know how important confidence is yet I find myself so awkward and unrelaxed. I know how I need to control my mindset and thoughts, to fake it till I make it but I feel myself slipping and retracting into a very unnecessary ball of negativity. An anecdote, just last week I started working at this summer placement which honestly I don’t know how I got into ( it was all through prayer) but already I feel myself shying away from things like talking to the customers with confidence because I believe for some reason that I can’t do it or not putting effort into forming a good relationship with the other employees even though all they’ve shown me is kindness and encouragement.

I know that my relationship with god forms the basis of my whole entire existence. To live and achieve anything I need to place utmost importance to my faith but lately I’ve felt myself slipping and then feeling this sense of guilt because I know I’m not doing enough. Right now I feel little to no faith in my heart, I don’t feel the yearning I once felt to improve my faith, I act like I’m in control of my life when its all god. I was created weak by god and my whole purpose is to worship and ask him and no one else for help. Only through the remembrance of god do hearts find rest. Your provisions in this world should be left only up to him, he is the one that provides. I swear a constant sense of poverty and shortage will always be in your plane of vision if you forget god.

I know comparison is a silly thing. No two people are the same yet I see myself wanting certain things other people seem to naturally have. Comparison only leads to hate and envy or just you feeling inferior when you probably have many of other things about you which are great, so so great. Needless to say I compare myself to others far too much.

That hustle, those hours you put in, thats the only way you will ever get results. Successful people don’t sit and just wishfully think, they DO. Hard work is what produces results and just like they all say, actions speak louder than word. Being busy is a great thing but if your not busying yourself with at least some level of productiveness then whats the point? You feel like your life isn’t moving forward but who’s fault is that?

A little round up, update its a about a week later and my relationship with god has improved a lot alhamdulilah and also I’ve gained a lot more confidence at my placement but Aisha I dare you to set yourself some goals for the summer and actually stick to them.

Challenge yourself.

 

You are not safe

Who said you were saved?

You know Taqwa, Tawakkul and Iman are vital for living

But who said you were saved?

He gave you that sweet taste of faith,

But who said you were saved?

Just because your struggle has been alleviated, why the foolishness once again?

Who said you were saved?

This world is nothing but a fleeting enjoyment but you’ve invested your soul into it.

Who said you were saved?

Why have you given your heart away to some temporary play and amusement?

Who said you were saved?

A life alone in between the 2 worlds awaits you and only you.Unknown

Who said you were saved?

The life of the grave  where only your deeds will follow you.

who said you were saved?

So hasten towards worshipping only your lord,

work righteous deeds for your time is limited,

 Stop claiming safety for you do not know the end which could very well be your reality.

 

Definitions:

Taqwa-god consciousness, Iman-faith, Tawakkul- reliance on god

This year

There have been some low moments but I have to say this is the one year that has taught me so much about myself. I remember this time last year (2015) so so clearly. I was sad, hopeless and very lost. I was going through a lot of big changes in my life and I didn’t know how to handle any of them. Slowly as the months went by I discovered this and that which amounted to all that I know now.

There are certain things that I would never trade for the world.

My religion being the first of them. I thank god for this blessing, ‘to him we belong and to him we’ll return’. The next thing has to be my family although I need to work on putting them before all other affairs. I don’t live too close to my mother anymore but I’ve honestly realised how irreplaceable she is, my father and siblings too.

I also promise to never lose hope in myself and my goals. Theres nothing stopping me, I have all the resources to be great in whatever I want to be so I hope to strengthen my faith in god and truly believe the sky is my only limit.

Also to never degrade myself and lose my dignity in a desperate attempt of ‘acceptance’. If someone doesn’t like you, keep it moving. You weren’t put in this world to place limits on yourself or to keep looking over the fence at your neighbours garden.

To do any of these things I’ve just mentioned I need to be content. I need to believe that my life is in gods hands. As it goes I have all the basic necessities and more. I have my health, sanity, youth, freedom, time and I’m only responsible for myself. So I need to make the most of these things before one of them disappears e.g. my youth (inevitable) or my health (god forbid).

Don’t make extreme rash decisions. Be open to new ideas and experiences. Creating a box and pretending you’ve somehow discovered the essence of life is so wrong. Always be open to things that will enhance your outlook towards existence. Limiting yourself from all the great things out there makes you depressed and sad, so why do this? Your still learning things about yourself and you always will be hopefully.

Basically judgement is something you weren’t created to do, EVER!

Never hate anyone even if they’ve got on your last nerve. Don’t make categories and sub-categories in your brain based on people and the way they treat you or the way you perceive them. Obviously create healthy boundaries and don’t let people just trample all over you. Hating someone however  or ‘cutting’ them off is almost never the right option. Hate and love are too very extreme emotions, ones that should be used with the utmost caution.

Solitude is a great thing. It allows you to think things over. It just so happens your an introvert so you prefer this anyway but once again shutting yourself off because you think you know everything  is fatal, avoid this. Spend time with loved ones. Be kind to others without expecting anything in return. Do this more because you’ve been majorly lacking in this area, this past year.

There are of course some less abstract things that I hope to achieve this year (god willing):

  1. Start or fully learn how to drive.
  2. Look after my health and get fit (gym maybe?)
  3. Create good habits to make life easier (meal prep? get organised?)
  4. Seek knowledge.
  5. Learn arabic (big one I know)
  6. Speak to mum more often
  7. Be more creative (blog more?)

Discipline is what will make any of these things possible. Practise this strongly.

So there you have it. This year has been quite the ride. Am excited to see what next year brings and lastly I thank god for allowing me to see another year, I really do hope to make the most of it.

 

Hope

The desire to move forward no matter what crap you’re going through.

It takes getting out your own head to change your mindset. Sometimes isolating yourself and thinking there aren’t any answers left is the biggest catalyst to self destruction . You think you have it all sorted so you shut yourself off and believe the path you’ve chosen is right. Its not, trust me.

You’ll keep going and going until the pot boils over and your whole house burns down. You’re too far gone and feel like a way out no longer exists. For me it gets to a point where I no longer feel emotion. Its just very demoralising. Life becomes a useless routine. You have lost the will to live.

You live a never ending chore just like those people. Lifeless eyes that depict a lonesome wolf trying to stay afloat a drowned ship.

How can I close my eyes when the film has just begun? Will you give up and settle just like that?

Hope is something only you can keep alive and look after, Its important. You have to dream and believe you can achievimages-1e anything no matter how many times it gets hard and you get knocked down.

Giving up is simply not an option.

Whoever you are and whatever your going through just be content. Look around and realise what you have, even those really obvious things. Be grateful.

May god keep our faith in him and ourselves strong.

 

A recent experience

I’m extremely privileged to say the least. I live in my parents house and I have a bed. I don’t depend on myself financially although I do have a part time job. I’m not rich but am definitely not poor. I have more than I could ever need clearly as I type away on my laptop. I’m also a student hence the lack of full time work. (A bit of context)

I had a few weeks to spare before university began. I made the decision to make the most of my free time and get some temporary work. So I did. I worked packing items for a huge online website. The hours were very long. The days were dull. I felt like I was encapsulated in a torturous video game. I died everyday but automatically regenerated at 5am the next morning like nothing had happened. The scanner became my best buddy and the different boxes my trusty associates as I packed, packed, packed. I vowed to continue my robotic life in this new alien world no matter what it took.

I looked around and saw people who’d been working in this same place for years. People who probably had others relying on them and there I was. Wondering how on earth they did it. The goal was to make the most amount of money  however painful it got. I could do it. I knew I could.

I constantly calculated the money I’d earn if I stayed on, thats what all my thoughts relayed back to. Surely it would be worth it. Money became the only motive in my life. Then I started getting anxious thoughts about what I’d do with this money. I felt scared to spend it and see it go. Everything became extremely money related. I unintentionally based my entire existence around.

2 weeks down, 1 to go.

I had a couple days off before my last cluster of shifts. Naturally I should’ve chilled out and enjoyed this unusual free time but all I did was dread what was to come. I spent all these days hating myself and everything around me. Everything I did was bleak and I couldn’t see even a glimpse of light. I felt like I was going to a familiar dark place by force. My mental health was deteriorating fast and I really didn’t know how to save it. I was doing everything I normally would. I went out, I ran all my errands, I cleaned, I rested and I really tried to keep stable but the dread just grew worse and worse. These few days probably felt worse than when I was working.

Then it finally happened, I CRACKED.

Today I went into work and quit. I literally feel the weight of 10 sumo wrestlers lifted off my shoulders. I feel ecstatic. It took a couple of hours to adjust to normality but honestly I have no regrets.

Things I learnt:

  • Never do I job that will potentially cost me my mental wellbeing.
  • Appreciate my parents and how hard they worked.
  • Give back to my parents as soon possible so my dad never has to work all them crazy hours.
  • Thank god and appreciate the absolute privilege I have in going to university and having that as pretty much my sole responsibility.
  • Appreciate the freedom I have/had to do what I want.
  • Don’t become so money orientated that you think of nothing else.
  • Keep trusting god in all your decisions no matter how tough things get.

I understand

There is no greater feeling than having someone who understands and maybe thats what real friendship is. Sharing your experience with someone whether it be the happiest or most traumatic moments of your life. Being 100% real without holding back. No fear of judgement because that option simply doesn’t exist.

Its honestly so hard to have a genuine 2 sided conversation nowadays. You either always hold something back or you just get bored.

So being able to share your ideas, fears, goals, worries, embarrassment and then balance it all out with laughter is just so refreshing. Its simply invigorating having someone you can share your turbulent journey of growth with. It feels like speaking to a therapist where you definitely know whatever you disclose will never escape and you will come out the other side feeling so much better. The most bewildering part of it all has to be the indisputable comfort you feel just by being your truest self.

Never compromise yourself for anyone. Your thoughts are special, so is your vision. Only give your time to people who will respect that, people who will respect and listen to all of you.

I feel like having that person who does understands is an additional blessing in your life. I’m honestly so grateful for this however its important to realise you have to be your own best friend before anyone else. Always be secure in yourself. Consolidate a concrete foundation of self-sufficiency. If you rely completely on yourself, you’ll always pick yourself back up when you stumble.

People can disappoint, no matter how perfect they seem. Don’t ever expect them to give you everything. It doesn’t matter if this may be your spouse, parents, good friend etc. Don’t shy away from being alone, befriend the voices in your head, understand them and then keep them in check. Learn to be your own hero so you can appreciate the support and companionship others have to offer.

So in summary, always love and appreciate yourself because only then can you fully allow others into your perplexing story. Definitely remember to appreciate these ‘understanding’ people as well. They’re rare and certainly don’t come around too often.

Be wary of the energy you give out and accept. This is what ultimately dictates a lot of your life, if not all of it.

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