Tips

6 Crucial Self Confidence Tips

6 Crucial Self Confidence Tips

Here are six crucial self confidence tips. These tips are extracted from my eBook: Best Of Creation: An Islamic Guide To Self-Confidence. To read the full eBook, grab a copy here.

Thinking Straight

The human mind is such that if we are not monitoring our thoughts, we tend to think negatively. Perhaps it is Shaytaan trying to cause us to despair, but the idle mind is a dangerous thing and is often susceptible to negative thought patterns.

The key to overcoming this is to monitor your thoughts and be in charge. Keep a diary for a day of the kind of thoughts that pass through your mind. Mark them down as positive or negative, compare the amount of positive and negative thoughts and identify causes.

Once you are away of your thought patterns and the triggers, the next step is to replace a negative thought with a positive one. If your mind is telling you that Allah will never forgive you, remind yourself that Allah forgives all those who sincerely seek forgiveness. If you are thinking that you will never be successful in life, remind yourself that Allah is in control of destiny and He can help you succeed in miraculous ways.

Make a list of positive thoughts and remind yourself of them daily. For common negative thoughts, write down a positive response and remind yourself of it whenever the negative thought comes to mind. It also helps to look in a mirror and talk confidence into yourself.

It is Allah’s mercy that He does not hold us accountable for the thoughts that stray into our mind, but we are accountable for the thoughts we choose to entertain and act upon. Be an active thinker and don’t leave room for the whisperings of the devil.

Avoid the Blame Game

When developing the habit of positive thinking, it is important to weed out and remove negative thought patterns. A common negative thought pattern that causes low self-confidence is the blame game.

Many of us do not want to accept responsibility for our actions, so we look for something or someone to blame for our failures. This is also known as the victim mentality, were one feels one’s entire life is just being a victim of circumstance. It is a very fatalistic attitude and this unislamic.

Here are some common examples of the blame game in action:

“Society will never accept me if I do, so why bother trying,”

“The world we live in works with a certain system, I can’t try something outside that system,”

“My parents expect me to do this kind of job for the rest of my life, I can’t disappoint them by doing what I want,”

“The world is a bad place and there is nothing we can do about it,”

“I was raised like that, I can’t change who I am or what habits I developed”

“This is the local culture, and there is nothing we can do to change it,”

As you can see from these examples, the blame game creates an attitude of defeatism. Having something or someone to blame for one’s failure to act is easy, and eases some of the guilt one feels for not doing what you needed to do.

As Muslims, we cannot blame others for our shortcomings. Allah has created each of us with the ability to do well, and to be our best. Nobody is to blame for our failure to act except our own selves. We must accept responsibility for our lives and decisions, only then will we feel empowered enough to move forward.

Be Yourself as long as being yourself is Halal

This is my personal motto. I spent my teenage years in a Darul Uloom whose culture was such that everybody was bullied into dressing alike, speaking alike and pretending that we are all the same, stripped of any individuality. This environment made me grow rebellious and I would upset the status quo with small attempts at being different.

As I studied Islam more deeply, I was amazed at how Islam has room for so many different personality types. The companions of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) were diverse in their personalities. They included scholars, warriors, leaders, businessmen, farmers, strict people, funny people, thinkers and followers.

This led to me formulating my motto: Be yourself as long as being yourself is halal. Allah does not ask us to be robots: looking alike, dressing alike and behaving like we don’t have any unique attributes. At the same time, we all have evil within us that needs to be suppressed, and that part of us should be controlled.

Be yourself. Do not worry about what people say, just be yourself whether that means being strict or humorous. Don’t pretend to be strict because others are, and don’t pretend to be funny because other people want you to.

Let your natural personality flow and you will feel confident and happy. If you need to change anything, change it for the sake of Allah to grow closer to Him. Base your life changes on pleasing Allah, not on pleasing people.

Be your genuine and best self and not only will you grow in confidence but people will appreciate your honesty and courage and will eventually follow in your footsteps.

Write Your Thoughts

Thoughts are very powerful, but often confusing. The human mind is not completely logical. Most of our thoughts and decisions are based more on emotion than logic, and it often isn’t clear whether we are thinking straight.

This can be very dangerous when it comes to negative thoughts. Negative thoughts are often exaggerated, emotional and unrealistic. But because we don’t really analyse them, we tend to believe our own minds too easily. One of the ways to counter this is to write down your thoughts.

This is the reason why many people keep diaries. Writing down your thoughts can be very powerful. It gives you an outlet to get all those thoughts and emotions out of your mind without hurting anyone else. It also gives you a chance to look at your thoughts from an outside perspective and analyse them in an unbiased manner.

The next time you have negative thoughts, try writing them down. Write whatever comes to mind, and read it later when you are in a better mood. You will then be able to discover what went wrong in your thought process and how untrue most negative thoughts really are.

Be in charge of your emotions

Humans are emotional creatures, and our emotions affect our confidence and productivity a lot. This is why it is important to constantly stay in control and feed yourself positive emotions.

Sometimes we allow others to control our emotions. We allow people to make us angry, to upset us, to depress us, to irritate us and as a result we head down an emotional roller coaster because of what someone else said.

Reality is that nobody can make you do anything, because you control your emotions. People can do what they want, but you choose how you react. You don’t have to become angry when someone insults you, you can choose to feel sorry for him instead. He must be having a hard day and took it out on you. You don’t have to be depressed if someone is not happy with how you live your life. You answer to Allah, not that person, so why worry?

Emotions affect our confidence is a major way. From today onward, tell yourself that you will not allow other people to dictate how you think, feel or behave. You live to serve Allah and if He is happy with your lifestyle, it doesn’t matter what people say. Don’t let them affect you, focus on what is important and don’t give people the keys to your emotions.

Be comfortable with who you are

Stop worrying about the shape of your nose, the way you walk, the tone of your skin or the sound of your voice. Allah made you exactly as He wanted you to be. Embrace that and be happy with it. Life is after all about pleasing Him and He doesn’t look at all that, He looks at our hearts and actions.

Become comfortable with your human flaws. Yes, you may have a stutter or a weak immune system. It’s all fine in the long run, stop worrying about that and focus on all the good Allah has blessed you with.

The day you stop worrying about all this and embrace your natural self is the day you stop killing your own confidence with negative self-talk. Replace it positive talk. You are as Allah wanted you to be, you can improve your thoughts, deeds and character so you will focus on that and not on the things that don’t matter.

To continue reading, purchase the full eBook here.

Crucial Self Confidence Tips

Learn more crucial self confidence tips by reading the full eBook.

Posted by Ismail Kamdar, 1 comment

3 Productivity Tips you can implement right now

Productivity Tips

Sometimes all you need is one small adjustment to your daily life. Such a change could suddenly free up lots of time you didn’t know you had. These three productivity tips will help you make such immediate changes:

#1 Minimize Social Media Time

Social media can be the biggest time waster for many of us. I’m not telling you get off it. After all, you probably found this blog through social media. Just to cut it down a bit. Instead of being online all day, try switching off during high concentration tasks.

Whats a high concentration task?

Its any task that requires your full attention. Multi-tasking between completing such a task and using social media can double the amount of time it takes to complete it.

For example, if you are reading an article while checking social media, it might take 15 minutes to read the article.

If you close your social media for five minutes, you could complete reading the entire article in five minutes and understand it better.

Try it. Next time you need to concentrate, just switch off from social media for a few minutes. It works like magic.

#2 Cut out the chit chat

Whether it is a co-worker, an old friend, or your spouse calling from home. Learn to minimize conversations without being rude. Simply inform people of how much time you have to spare.

They will understand and keep the conversation within that time limit. If needed, remind them politely that you have work to do. Do this often and people will begin to understand.

By limiting conversations, you will discover hours of extra time during the day to get things done.

#3 Make a To-Do List

To-Do Lists do not require any formal training. Just write out a list of everything you need to do today, and do it all one by one. Its as simple as that.

To-Do Lists are the core of time management. Without one, it is very difficult to keep track of whether you are being productive or just busy doing nothing. Make a To-Do list right now and see for yourself.

You can learn a lot more about Time Management by reading my e-book
Getting The Barakah

Buy Now

Available exclusively through Islamic Self Help

Posted by Ismail Kamdar in Productivity, Time Management, 0 comments

20 Time Management Tips in 6 minutes

As mentioned in the title, here is a short 6 minute podcast summarizing 20 Time Management Tips!

You can listen to the audio podcast about Time Management tips here, or read the transcript below:

  1. Avoid multi-tasking as it splits your attention between two things and you end up making mistakes in both tasks.
  2. Have a means of measuring your long term goals, so that you know how close you are to completing the goal and can plan accordingly.
  3. When working on a high concentration task, put your phone on silent, close all social media and concentrate on the task at hand.
  4. Study in bursts of 20 minutes, with five minute breaks in between. The five minute break allows your mind to store the information in your long term memory, which leads to increased understanding and longer retention of information.
  5. Start your day with Fajr and work on one High concentration task immediately after Fajr, like studying, memorizing Qur’an or writing an article. You will get the task done in less time with stronger results.
  6. Getting sufficient sleep (6 to 8 hours) is crucial for remaining alert and productive.
  7. Keep reminders of important tasks where you can see them. Add them to your phone calendar, or stick notes on your wall so that you remember important events for important days.
  8. Learn shortcut keys on your computer, it will lead to you completing your work in record time, eg: CTRL + C for copying and CTRL + V for pasting, instead of copying and pasting the long way.
  9. Keep a neat uncluttered work environment and you will find yourself more motivated to work.
  10. The above applies to your PC’s desktop as well, keep it uncluttered and organized.
  11. Learn to speed read and speed listen, these save time and help you remember things long term.
  12. Learn the shortest (and least congested) route to frequent destinations to save time on the road.
  13. Utilize time waiting in queues to read an e-book or listen to a podcast on your phone.
  14. Eat healthily and exercise daily to maintain energy and productivity
  15. When working, take a five minute break every 55 minutes to refresh your mind. You will end up storing energy and getting more done compared to someone who works without breaks.
  16. On your day off, avoid thinking of work and focus on recharging yourself through Halal fun.
  17. Take a family vacation at least for one week a year in order to completely recharge.
  18. If something will take less than two minutes to get done, do it straight away.
  19. When someone wants to speak to you, inform them that you have just five or ten minutes to speak before you have to move on to your next task. This will help keep conversations short and to the point.
  20. Delegate whatever you can to someone else who can do a good or better job of it.

All points extracted from my book Getting The Barakah: An Islamic Guide to Time Management, click the link below for purchase details.

Learn Time Management the Islamic Way

Learn Time Management the Islamic Way

Posted by Ismail Kamdar in Productivity, Time Management, 2 comments
6 Daily Habits That Keep Me Productive

6 Daily Habits That Keep Me Productive

Daily Habits that keep me productive

People often ask me how I am able to get so much done every single day. While I have documented my detailed system in my book “Getting The Barakah: An Islamic Guide To Time Management“, I thought it would be nice to summarize for you some of the daily habits that help me stay productive.

Habits are the key to success. Every decent Self Help book emphasizes that good habits lead to good long term results, while bad habits lead to bad long term results. I spent the past half a decade building good habits that take me closer to my goals daily, here are six of the most important ones:

1. I make a To-Do list the night before

Writing out a daily To-Do list is essential for having a productive day. It gives you an idea of exactly what you need to get done during the day and you feel a sense of accomplishment as you scratch each item off your To-Do list.

To take it one step further, I prepare my To-Do list the night before. As I round off my work for the day and scratch off the last item on my To-Do list, I take another five minutes to make my To-Do list for the next day. The benefit of this is that your subconscious mind works on the To-Do list all night, and you wake up knowing exactly what needs to get done that day. From all of my daily habits, this one is most crucial.

2. I stick to a routine

Daily Habits are all about creating routines, and no doubt about it, if I want to work full-time, home-school my kids, blog, write books, do Dawah locally, present Radio Programs, work on my own personal development, and spend time with family then a routine is necessary.

I set certain times of the day for working on specific tasks and get into the habit of working on those tasks during that time, eg: 9am-12pm for homeschooling, 3pm-5pm for writing. Doing so helps me develop a routine which helps get me into a flow that will help me accomplish both my long-term and short-term goals.

3. I schedule my day around Salah and Quran

Reciting a portion of the Qur’an daily with reflection, and praying the five daily prayers on time take precedence over anything else. It doesn’t matter how busy you are, there is always time to pray Salah and recite Qur’an if you make them a priority. The problem is that many of us try to fit Salah into our day, instead plan your day around the Salah times and you will find yourself never missing a Salah and gaining Allah’s assistance throughout the day.

This is why besides praying the five daily Salah, I schedule time every day after Dhuhr to recite Qur’an for fifteen minutes with contemplation, as the needs of the soul are greater than the needs of the body.

4. I start the day with dua

Of course, every Muslim must start their day with Fajr, unless you wake up earlier and start your day with Qiyam Al-Layl. Either way, you are starting your day at a time when dua is accepted, so take advantage of it.

This is why I begin each day with a dua to Allah asking Him to help me accomplish every task on my To-Do list and more. Because with the help of Allah, anything is possible!

5. I focus on one thing at a time

This is critical for getting things done. If we try too hard to multi-task, we end up not doing justice to whatever tasks we are working on. Focus on one thing at a time, and give it your full attention. Doing so will ensure better quality work, completed in a shorter amount of time, and you will still find time to complete the other tasks.

Right now, I am strongly resisting the urge to listen to a podcast while typing this article, because I know I will not give either proper attention if I multi-task right now.

6. I pace myself

Contrary to popular opinion, I do not sit all day and night working. I take regular breaks throughout the day to relax and recharge. I also spend the evenings having fun, and once a week I take an entire day off and don’t do any work at all. The reason is that I believe we function better and get work done faster in this way.

If someone works non-stop for four hours in a row, that person will experience fatigue and the quality of his work will lessen with each passing hour. However, if he works in bursts of 50 minutes, taking a 10 minute break every hour, he will get better quality work done in faster time.

So there you have it, these are six things I do every day to stay productive. If you enjoyed this, read the followup regarding 5 other things I do daily to stay productive!

Posted by Ismail Kamdar in Goal Setting, Time Management, 4 comments