When It's One of Those Days

Tips Based on Real Experience
time is passing

I hate the feeling of having spent so much time on something and then finally realizing that the time hasn’t really accomplished anything.

I think we all have those times, those days, when you start off with the best of intentions and then, as if you’ve lost control of your senses, you watch the clock and see everything spiral out of control.

I think this line from Henry David Thoreau’s Walden Pond captures it well:

“It was morning, and lo, now it is evening, and nothing memorable is accomplished.”

So, I got to think how we can salvage a day like this and I came up with a few strategies (for myself first) - as Allah, the Almighty, advises us:  (Remind, for the reminder benefits the believers.)  (The Qur’an-51:55)

Here they are my personal strategies to salvage one of those days:

1.  Ask yourself:  What one thing I do today will make this a successful day?  When you have an answer – do it, FIRST.  Before anything!  Before “checking your email”

2.  Establish a routine that “puts you in the mood”.  I may do another post on this sometime soon, but in the meantime, suffice it to say that even the little things can open up pathways of neurological productivity.  What does that mean?  Well, maybe chewing a piece of gum helps you write better.  Or, putting your workout clothes beside the prayer mat you use for Fajr helps you go for a jog in the morning.  Find your quirks and work them to their maximum benefit!

3.  Don’t be “I ate one cookie and now I have to finish the whole box” kind of a girl. All is not lost.  Just because you spent two hours watching YouTube videos of funny cats doing stupid things doesn’t mean you have to keep sitting there, thinking “well, what’s about one more hour.”  Turn it off now.  RIGHT NOW!  Tell yourself “I can continue tomorrow” if you must.  Hopefully, tomorrow won’t be one of those days.

4.  Wonder if your mind and body need “one of those days.” When we’re operating on hyper-activity all the time, zoning out and accomplishing nothing might be what your mind and/or body actually need so as not to burn out.  Remember protocol “It’s Good to Be Queen” and “the Queen Whisperer?”  If you can learn to be in tune with what your mind and body need, you can actually spare yourself the mindless wasting of your time and do something fun and beneficial (in a relaxing, creativity building way).

5.  Conclude activities with the reading of Surah Al’Asr.

(By Al-’Asr (the time). Verily! Man is in loss. Except those who believe and do righteous good deeds, and recommend one another to the truth which Allah has ordained, and abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which Allah has forbidden, and recommend one another to patience.) (The Qur’an- 103:1-3)

Related Links:
Time and Health: The Blessings That We Deny
The Value of Time in Islam
Assess your Values

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