Do you beat yourself to be a people-pleaser?

no-people-pleaserYou cannot always be a people pleaser.
I was always among those who cannot deny or say ‘No’ to people; and end up creating lots of stories to get away from the situation.

Being helpful is nice and right indeed, but letting yourself down in order to make others happy is not the right thing to do.

I usually agree to do something, because I don’t have enough emotional courage to refuse. But once I agree, I find myself in real distress and burn all of my good deeds by back biting.
One of my colleagues and a good friend guided me in this regard; making me realize that I have a right to say ‘No’ to things that I find inappropriate. Self esteem and self respect are the two basic elements which make up our whole personality. Being helpful and kind is necessary to feel content, but feeding our own respect is way more necessary.
Therefore, I would suggest don’t let yourself get knocked down by thinking what people might think; be courageous and uphold your personal views.
Be firm on your decision, yet humble. You don’t need to be rude, or use harsh tone to say ‘No’; you can be polite and consistent.
Take ‘No’ as a powerful tool which may help you in using your positive energy in a right way.

Be firm, not defensive or overly apologetic; raise yourself, raise your esteem!

Heart-Break

Free Grunge Textures - www.freestock.ca / Foter / CC BY

Free Grunge Textures – www.freestock.ca / Foter / CC BY

Yet another serious heart-break,
yet another unexpected blow.
Yet another discrete proof of,
people’s fake and outward show!

Ready to help us all the time,
support they’re willing to offer.
But when the time comes to help,
their words and actions differ!

Expectations are built and broken,
it happens again, and yet again.
One feels dejected and ditched;
friendships are lost without gain!

Words of hope echo in your mind,
their false claims give you tears.
But you, O human, do not stop,
to turn to the “Only” who’s near!

Nothing to lose when you love Allah (swt),
His pleasure wins you all gain.
Benefits in this world and the next,
happiness and rewards, no pain!

Yet we humans fail to be believers,
we find it difficult to rely on Him.
Shaytan wins the battle with us,
chances of not being doomed are slim!

We know all this yet from people,
our needs of love, we associate.
We get hurt but we keep trying,
to fool ourselves till we dissipate.

Then we gather our shattered self,
we bow down to Him in depression.
We renew our faith, and we pledge,
We’ll only yearn for His attention.

A few days pass by until we stick,
to the new promise and resolve.
However, Shaytan doesn’t cease,
we give in to his tricks, we absolve!

Our mind tries to hold us back but,
our heart craves for love and care.
Self-deceived and misguided again,
we turn to the creation in despair!

Knowingly we treat ourselves unkind;
we get involved in people again.
Expecting from others rather than Him,
Utterly dismayed, we shout in pain…..

“Yet another serious heart-break,
yet another unexpected blow.
Yet another discrete proof of,
people’s fake and outward show!”

Most Beloved People To Allah – Anfa’uhum

keep-calm-and-help-others-17

By Eman Al-Obaid – Al-Huda Sisters, Dubai

Adapted for Hiba Magazine by Tasneem Vali

Ibn Umar reported: Two men came to the Messenger of Allah (sa), and said: “O Messenger of Allah, which of the people are most beloved to Allah? And which deeds are most beloved to Allah?” The Prophet (sa) said: “The people most beloved to Allah are those who are most beneficial to the people; and the most beloved deed to Allah is to make a Muslim happy, or remove one of his troubles, or to forgive his debt, or to satiate his hunger, or to walk with his brother regarding a need…and whoever walks with his brother regarding a need until he secures it for him, then Allah the Exalted will make his footing firm across the bridge on the day when the footings are shaken.” (At-Tabarani)

Clearly, the best among us is the one who gives the most to our fellow humans. It does not specify that we must be beneficial and of help to only Muslims, we must contribute toward helping everyone. The ways in which we can be beneficial are simple:

  1. Benefit oneself – meaning stop yourself from committing Haram or forbidden acts, and obey Allah’s commands regarding all aspects of your lives (forbidden acts will destroy you).
  2. Obey the Prophet’s (sa) directives, anything that Allah and His Messenger (sa) forbade, stay away from it.
  3. Perform not only the obligatory, but also go above and beyond to achieve Allah’s love.

Obviously, to be the ‘most’ beloved to Allah, we must be the best at everything we do. We cannot be ordinary, we cannot follow what others do – we have only Allah and the Prophet to guide us. In our hi-tech space age lives, with everything labelled as Top 5 or Top 10 ways to do something, let us look at the most authentic Top 10 list on how to be Allah’s beloved.

Top 10 Characteristics of Anfa’uhum

  1. Constantly make Dua to Allah for guidance.
  2. “The best of you are those who are best to their families, and I am the best of you to my family.” (Tirmidhi) Benefit your household, family and children (not only yourself) by:
    1. Righteous upbringing/nurturing dependents.
    2. Making your family realize the greatness of Allah, teaching them about Allah, making them love the religion and confident about being on the right path.
    3. Teach your dependents prayer, fasting, charity, etc. and their importance.
    4. Meet your spouse/parents and children with a beaming, happy face.
  3. Become a good example for everyone around you – the way you talk, the way you deal with others, etc.
    1. Instil love and respect for Allah and the Prophet (sa) in everyone you meet.
  4. Benefit other Muslims (Muslims around you) with the most beloved deeds to Allah.
    1. Happiness enters your heart by doing/fulfilling righteous acts commanded by Allah.
    2. Help in removing any distress from your brother/sister in Islam, Allah will remove your distress on the Day of Resurrection.
    3. “The best of you are those who feed others and return greetings.” (Abu Ya’la, Hasan)
    4. Distress can be of any type, large or small – work, life, study, money, advice, opinion, hunger.
    5. Distress of life is nothing compared to the distress of the Day of Judgment, so make sure you help.
  5. Do not be selfish to only benefit yourself – wish the best for the others.
  6. Smile to spread happiness, Allah loves it; it is an act of charity. Meet others with a beaming smile, this is the least you can do.
  7. Do not expect any reward, gratitude, praise or thanks, help only for Allah’s sake. Wait patiently for the best reward possible from Allah.
  8. Fulfil someone’s needs; Allah will be there during your time of need.
    1. Be very helpful, examples: pick, drop, photocopy, grocery, anything at all
    2. You start the act; most people feel shy or feel it beneath their dignity to ask for help so approach them yourself in a respectful manner.
    3. Allah will deal with you the same way, when you are shy to ask for help – Allah will help you.
  9. Benefit yourself by keeping your anger away from others.
    1. Do not show your anger. When you are angry – forgive people.
    2. When you are angry, you are harming others and are of no benefit to them.
    3. Learn to suppress anger.
    4. Forgiving and pardoning people is following Allah’s commands.
    5. “The best of the Muslims is he from whose hand and tongue the Muslim is safe.” (Muslim)
  10. Treat people with most excellent manners/character.
    1. Treat others the same way you want to be treated.
    2. “The best of people are those with the most excellent character.” (Tabarani)
    3. “The best of people are those that bring most benefit to the rest of mankind.” (Daraqutni, Hasan).
    4. “The best of people are those who live longest and excel in their deeds, whereas the worst of people are those who live longest and corrupt their deeds.” (Tirmidhi)

Most Beloved People to Allah – As-Sabireen

indeed-allah-is-with-the-patient

Adapted for Hiba Magazine by Tasneem Vali

“…and many a Prophet (i.e. many from amongst the Prophets) fought (in Allah’s Cause) and along with him (fought) large bands of religious learned men. But they never lost heart for that which did befall them in Allah’s way, nor did they weaken nor degrade themselves. And Allah loves As-Saabireen (the patient ones, etc.).” (Al-Imran 146)

“This passage comments on the early events of the Battle of Uĥud up to the point at which the victory which was well within the grasp of the Muslim army turned into defeat.”(In the Shade of the Quran, Vol. 2 p.185). This was the first battle after Badr, and the Muslims felt victory was their destiny in every encounter as they were on the right path. Without making this ayah particular to a nation, Allah tells us that at any point, when faced with trial the true believer remains strong (both emotionally and physically) and patient – their reward is Allah’s love. This Ayah speaks to us in the present also. “It (Allah’s love) helps heal wounds and is accepted as ample and generous compensation for every hardship.”(In the shade…Vol 2, p.199)

To have patience/to be patient is mentioned many times in the Quran – but only once does Allah say He loves the patient ones. Reward for patience and the description of what patience means is mentioned many times, but Allah’s love as a reward for being patient is mentioned only once! This is the highlight; patience is a prerequisite to gain Allah’s love.

 What is patience?

sabr

It is when a believer controls his/her desires when faced with a situation where it is difficult if not impossible to control the Nafs (ego/desire). Every part of a person’s body needs to exercise patience:  the heart – I should not complain or feel unhappy with what is going on (situation), the tongue – not to complain to people (as if complaining about Allah to the slaves of Allah), the limbs – control all my limbs from any kind of action that is displeasing to Allah. For example, to control oneself from being negatively influenced by others– when something painful happens and you are patient, others might provoke you by saying, “Why are you quiet? Go fight for your right.” This leads you away from patience – beware of it.

Characteristics of As-Sabireen

الاستعانة بالصبر و الصلاةThey rely on Allah alone

  • Prayer helps you rely on Allah and be patient

الصدق They are truthful

  • Liars are impatient – they cannot be patient in a situation, so they lie
  • Even during a trial/test, the truthful ones stay patient (accept the situation), they don’t try to change it by lying

التقوى They are pious

  • People who are pious are patient and vice versa
  • They control themselves from everything that is displeasing to Allah or following their own desires
  • They are patient because they know Allah, therefore they love Allah, and fear Allah alone

الغلبة على الأعداء They overcome their enemies

  • They remain strong and firm/steadfast
  • They are both physically and emotionally strong

تجنب المعصيةThey abstain from sins

  • Abstain from sins for the sake of Allah alone

عدم النزاعThey are patient during conflicts/fights

  • It’s easy to get angry/shout/complain/show impatience and fight/argue because of impatience
  • They don’t come near conflicts in order that it might lead to fights– they control themselves in such situations

و في الامر – الدعوة بالمعروف و النهي عن المنكر They are patient when giving Da’wah – enjoining good and forbidding evil

  • Patient when calling people to Islam – especially if the person who they are giving Dawah to is close to them (family, relatives)

الصبر على محبة الدنيا و الرغبة في الآخرة They are patient in this world and yearn for the Hereafter

  • Love of the world and love of the hereafter cannot be in the heart together
  • They are not always busy thinking about material things, money, property or children. They are busy thinking about the Day of Judgment, Sunnah, Quran and Allah’s commands.

الصبر على الأمراض والبلايا They are patient when in sickness or afflictions

  • They don’t complain about their situation/ health

الصبر على الاستهزاء و أذى الناس They are patient when they are mocked at / humiliated

  • When someone is trying to harm them using words or mock, insult, humiliate, make fun of them, they are patient

عدم خطوات الشيطان They are patient when the devil whispers to them

  • They don’t follow in the footsteps of Shaitaan
  • Being patient helps to refrain from falling into the trap of the Shaitaan
  • Being patient about things that are not clearly Haram or Halal. Asking for Allah’s guidance to help decide

When you run towards Allah, towards gaining His pleasure, towards attaining His love, everything in life will come to you easily, but the prerequisite is patience. No matter how much you run or struggle for this life, it will keep slipping away from you! Control your desires, and be patient – Allah will make it easy for you.

Rewards for being among As-Sabireen:

  • The love of Allah – the best of rewards. (Al-Imran 3:146)
  • The companionship of Allah (complete comfort and supporting all aspects of life and the Hereafter) – this is mentioned many times in Quran. Can you hope for a better companion than Allah?
  • Unlimited rewards, there are no bounds to their reward. (Az-Zumar 10)

“O ALLAH! MAKE US FROM AMONG THE PATIENT ONES” – Ameen