My Anchor

myachorThere are days where the world feels like it is crushing me. I feel extremely exhausted and I just want to give up. Sometimes tears form in my eyes because of all the pressure and burden in my life. I constantly look for ways to relieve this stress in my life. Some people recommend drugs. Some recommend alcohol. Some recommend music. I know none of these things have a resolution for my problems, instead, they’ll just cause more problems. Gaining a form of addiction, a high, an escape that leads to more sadness and becomes unforgiving and relentless. It destroys your life in every possible way, so I avoid every type of haram (forbidden) Allah has commanded. There is salah and it’s something irreplaceable. It relieves this tension and lets everything you feel on your shoulders, pushing you down into sujood (prostration) to your creator. Alhamdulilah, it could never be replaced. It’ll always be number one. Some people will eat their misery away, indulging in their favourite foods. Ice cream, cakes, cookies but me…..
 
I cloud my thoughts with only one thing. I await the journey everyday, as I lace up my sneakers, thinking of what to do today once I enter the arena. This arena is not for everyone. People come and people go. This for those who have heart. Who are disciplined. Who are able to be consistent and push their limits. They look at themselves in the mirror and constantly want to improve. Some have “new years resolutions” that become unresolved, while others don’t have a resolution and just embed it into their lifestyle. It helps them breathe. Break the chains of the mind. Give them one more chance to improve themselves. It builds character and an unforgettable experience that only those that can bare the patience of it all. There is no end result because it becomes a part of you. Everyday, you enter the arena, you strive to improve. You sculpt and build a masterpiece that only your genetics allow. As I enter this arena, everything in my life becomes forgotten. It becomes an after thought. It is as though, nothing exists anymore. My mind becomes set on what I’m about to engage in. I block everything and everyone out. It’s just myself and this iron. Sometimes you’ll conquer it and sometimes it’ll conquer you. It can be unforgiving at times, making you doubt yourself but you want to prove yourself and prove to it, you’re the boss.
 
The gym, these weights, this iron, is my anchor. It is my drug. These weights, make me stronger but more so, allow me to escape from the harsh realities of this world. It allows me to free myself of the negative people and the thoughts that could bury me. It allows me to let go of these tears and anger built up from the burdens in my life. The anger is no longer suppressed. I free myself. Just as I free myself from the shaytaan 5 times a day praying salah, I free myself from negativity by lifting my pain away. It is my anchor, my drug. My pain reliever. I turn it to it several times a week, almost everyday. I come out pumped full of blood, goto sleep and wake up in pain. My body hates it but I love it. It’s a love and hate relationship but the love is more. They say, Im wasting my time but I say, I wouldn’t waste my time anywhere else. I love these weights and people don’t understand how much it means to me but I keep going. I’ll never stop building myself. Breaking free in a halal (permissible) way. No drugs. Just weights, sweat, pain and fibres ripping and stretching. This is where I come to escape. This is my anchor.
 
What’s yours?
(Inspired by: Dwayne Johnson)
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Do Not Say If

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Whenever you make du’aa (supplication), do not say “if” such and such happens. “if” such and such is given, please let it happen Allah. Do you ever study for a test or exam and think through out the entire test, if you pass? Some may but if you’ve dedicated hours of studying, you go into the test or exam full of confidence, full of positive thoughts. Just as you prepare for that exam and beam of confidence, knowing you’ll do well, when you make du’aa have confidence and be positive that Allah will answer your du’aas with success.

When you do feel like you’ve done well enough at work. You feel like you’ve excelled in your position and you feel you deserve a raise, you don’t doubt you’ll get that raise. You don’t doubt you’ll be compensated for your work but you feel confident enough knowing you’ll get it. You feel confident asking your boss because of your abilities and the skills have proven themselves.

Allah is Al-Alim, All-Knowing , All-Hearing, Al-Bashir and capable of anything in this world. When you make duaa, you are engaging in a conversation with the creator of the heavens and the earth. The one who controls everything in front of you. The one who is able to relieve your hardships and ease the burdens in your life. Don’t ask with “IF” and don’t ask with doubt but ask with confidence, positivity and ask knowing they’ll be answered to benefit your life.

I know it takes long and sometimes, a lot of times you feel like your du’aa isn’t being answered but, you are doing an act of worship and turning to Allah that will change the condition of your life. One du’aa, will change the course of your life. Don’t ever stop asking and the next time you make du’aa, don’t say if. Ask with confidence. Have a clear mind and leave everything to Allah. It’ll happen when it’s meant to happen and know that every time you go and make du’aa, you are doing an act of worship and getting rewarded for it. You either are being turned away from something, which your du’aa has been answered or you are being led towards something and your du’aa has been answered. Allah is the best of planners.

26 To 27 – Lessons I’ve Learned

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Yesterday, I turned 27. Please don’t write happy birthday. Here are some lessons I learned.

Im too nice and eventually that gets the best of me. Im too forgiving but I learned it’s best to let people go who aren’t a positive force in your life. If they break you down now, they’ll always break you down later.

Your heart and mind will always conflict, so you look to outside sources to reassure what your mind has made up, even then, it is difficult to do what is right, even if it is hurting you.

An ugly personality with a beautiful face, is still ugly. No amount of products or surgery can change that.

Wisdom does not come from age but it comes from experiences.

Extract lessons from your hardships to teach others on how to be the strongest version of themselves. Your ability to teach is undermined by the ability of your mind.

No one in this world is ugly. No matter how many people will tell you that, it is up to you to believe it or not. Be confident in your looks and how you were created.

Your body is an amanah (trust) so treat it with care. The better you take care of it now, the more it’ll benefit you when you are older. Go workout, get in shape and stay determined. A flower does not grow in a day and your body will not change in a day. It takes time and a lot of effort.

Keep your circle of friends small and keep those who are loyal in. Everyone else is just to keep you company.

Hardships are never to break you down but to make you stronger. Tough times don’t last, tough people do.

Pancakes are the best

Learn lessons from those who have been through more than you. You’ll learn from what they did right and you’ll avoid what they did wrong.

We are all selfish in some ways. Lessons are learned through realization not from those who are judging you.

Learn to love yourself first because self love will always exist, while a secondary love is temporary.

Always encourage those around you. Help them overcome their fears. Not because you expect them to return the favour but because Allah’s blessings are greater.

Always smile, joke around and enjoy yourself. There are others in this world who have less than you but appreciate everything more.

Everything is by the will of Allah, so no matter what you decide in life, if it is not meant to be, it wont be but best believe, it’ll be replaced with what is meant to be.

If your hardships aren’t bringing you closer to Allah, then your hardships will always exist. Get closer to the one who created you by putting your head on the floor and see your hardships depart.

Choose your life partner wisely. If they don’t pray salah, if they drink and understand the Qu’ran differently, then they aren’t for you.

Any woman can wear a hijab and any man can grow a beard but it is the actions that count, not the image presented.

And finally, be in service to others but not as a slave. You are a slave to Allah and not a slave to money. Correct your relationship with Allah SWT and you’ll be successful in everything you decide to do.

My 4 Keys To Happiness

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4. The Gym

The feeling when you step into the gym and see all those weights, it’s probably one of the most beautiful feelings. You go into a whole different mindset when you step in there. Your mindset is onto your goals and everything that was in your head before you came to the gym is gone. Lifting those dumbbells, pressing that bar, squatting that weight as heavy as you can, feels so good! Pushing your body to the limit. To see what you got. Do you have the will to keep going even after that last rep took everything out of you? Are you going to complain, it’s too heavy? NO! You are going to go there and give EVERYTHING YOU GOT! Your heart is pumping, you are sweating, feeling great and everything just connects and clicks. I don’t think there are many things that can replace this feeling. The gym has you feeling great and looking great. Now, I know I have women that follow my blog and women, read carefully. Lifting weights does not make you big, bulky. Lifting weights and then eating a lot of food makes you big. Those muscular women got to that stage because their intake of calories and macronutrients went way over than what they were usually eating. Lets say for example, she ate 1200 calories a day and she increased that, she would obviously put on size. Lifting weights does not make you big. Eating garbage food, sitting on the couch, lifting the remote to change the channel makes you big. Be active!

3. A Healthy Lifestyle

People in my family like to call me grandpa with the discipline I have over what foods go into my body. Im not a junk food person. Im not a cake person. Im not even a person with a sweet tooth, considering my entire family has one. If I told you, I could eat junk food all day and I’d lose weight, you would say you are lying! but that is the truth, it happens to me. While my siblings will eat something sugary, I’ll be eating fruits. While they eat something high in trans fat, I’ll eat something in good fats, like an avocado, eggs or walnuts. The thing about a healthy lifestyle is, what you put into your body, is what you’ll get out of your body. I remember whenever I ate Popeyes, it taste good but the feeling after in your stomach is not worth it. You also have to understand, your body is an amanah (trust) on to you. Your body has rights over you so why not give it, its proper rights and treat it with goodness. If you want to feel good, eat the right foods and trust me, you’ll feel energetic, happy, positive all day long, insha’Allah! Eat that garbage and you are in for high and then a crash! Don’t take me the wrong way, I love burgers but I want my heart to feel great, so I eat it sometimes. My kids in the future, insha’Allah will hate me lol! Im not writing insha’Allah for them hating me, Im writing insha’Allah for having kids when I am married.

2. Tawakul (Trust) & Qadr (Decree)

Trust in who? Allah SWT! Whatever affairs are happening in your life, know it is from Allah SWT who has decreed this for you and believing in the decree without a doubt in your mind, without a thought of negativity puts all your worries to rest. The moment you start thinking of things going bad or negatively, you start to worry, you start to panic and where do those worries come from? The whispers of shaytaan. He makes you worry about your rizq (sustenance), he makes you worry about things out of your control, as it is says in Surah Al-Baqara: “Satan threatens you with poverty and orders you to immorality while Allah promises you forgiveness from him and bounty. And Allah is all encompassing and knowing” [2:268]

As long as you continue to make an effort in your life, remember that everything is the decree of Allah SWT. The progress you are making, nothing can go wrong . Only thing you’ll have everyday is a smile on your face because you’ve put your trust in the creator of the heavens and the earth.

1. Salah (Prayer)

This is my number 1 key to happiness. Now, I don’t know how anyone can live their life without salah. The moment you hear Allah-Hu Akbar (God Is The Greatest), no it doesn’t mean, someone is coming to kill you, it means Allah Is The Greatest, that is it. You fold your hands and stand attentively in the salah listening to the beautiful recitation of the Quran. I don’t know how many times I’ve stood in salah and my eyes would start watering, my heart would feel the words of the Quran. As soon as the imam recites something I understand, it’s really hard to hold back tears. Salah is vital organ for a believer. I can’t live without it and you shouldn’t either. No matter how much I may struggle at times, salah is something I will ALWAYS turn to in happiness and in sadness.

These are my 4 keys to happiness. Insha’Allah, you benefited from it and you learned something. JazakAllah khair for reading. Have any questions? Feel free to email me: mshabazz33@gmail.com

It Is Within You

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I’ve noticed one thing over the years that no matter who has come to me for advice, I always seem to help others overcome obstacles in their life. Whether it is confidence, self acceptance, heart breaks, breaking mental barriers, whatever it is. I always seem to help them break through these things and allow them to see their worth, their skills, how much and how far they’ve buried themselves in doubt and fear. How much of their lives are wasted by just sitting in the shadows of doubt and fear. In the shadows of procrastinating over things which do not exist but only temporarily exist because they’ve allowed all of these doubts and fears to exist. It wasn’t me that did anything for you. It was yourself who overcame your fears and doubts. All I did was encourage you to see the person you really are and the person you can be. That is all you have to do on a day to day basis is encourage yourself and see your worth. If you can do that. If you see that within yourself, you would laugh at all the problems you thought you had. Problems only exist in a realm which you created along with your doubts, your fears and procrastination. They never existed before so don’t allow them to exist now. Fear Allah SWT and never the creation. Remove your doubts by having tawakul, trust, reliance in Allah SWT and your procrastination needs to be replaced with confidence and belief you are able to do whatever is you put your mind to. Whatever is you want to do or be , be dedicated and the return is with Allah SWT. Do, believe and you will receive InshaAllah. You are able to overcome and live a better life but the question is, do you want to? Start today….

If you need advice, encouragement or need someone to talk to, feel free to ask.

Do What You Love & Ask

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Do what you love and do it everyday of your life. Do it with a smile on your face and never be discouraged by those who see value in materialism rather than their happiness and sanity. Never sacrifice your life for the dollar as you and many others are already being sacrificed for it, look at the world, we are worthless. Become worthwhile to others by inspiring and encouraging a better lifestyle which can not be bought but is taught by learning the value of ourselves. If you knew what you are really worth to others, you would not need to buy friends or luxury but your love, comfort, jokes are more than enough. Don’t ever look to fit in. Stand out amongst the crowd. You are unique. Allah SWT created us with unique gifts and abilities but you want to be a clone. Don’t settle for that but be better than that. Who cares how others perceive you when you stand alone as you will be standing alone in front your creator one day too. Live to do good but don’t brag or bring it up, your rewards are with Allah SWT. Who cares if they don’t notice or appreciate. Do what you can and move on. Smile often and smile proudly but not in an arrogant manner. Take your time in sujood (prostration) and ask and you will receive, InshaAllah

 

I Am Just Me (Poetry)

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I am just as I am

Just me

Without a reflection of perfection

Just a perception of my realities

Ideas, skills and abilities

I am made entirely of flaws which are unseen

To the eyes but you only read

And perceive a person gleaming with a light of perfection

With such magnificence

Holding me to a plateau which is never in my existence

Only Allah deserves this praise

I am a man created to sin

Seek my creator for forgiveness

To open doors with keys of deeds

Which no dealer would be able to sell on the streets

I bow my head in humbleness

In fear all of this, my entirety will never be accepted

My salah, my deeds, my forgiveness, none of it

I am at no stage with no power

No mushroom, no star, no fire power

As small as Goombas

And as vulnerable as Koopas

Praise the creator, not the creation

The creation will err and make mistakes

Allah plans but never mistakes

His plan is perfect

My plan is a boat full of holes

Sink or stay afloat

Eventually it has to go

Buried deep, alone and just me

Perfection is not what I seek

Magnificent is not I

Read, ask, don’t perceive

Under these letters is dirt you’ve never seen

Covered with beautiful flowers

Only to mask what is really under

Growing and blossoming to be just who Im supposed to be

Not magnificent and never perfect

A slave of Allah who is seeking the acceptance of the One

So before you say a word of praise to me

Remember, nothing is from myself alone

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the worlds

Creator of the heavens, moons and suns

Magnificent is He, glorified is He

Me, just a slave striving to change myself and the world

Through these letters, speech and words He has given to me