Salaam Alaikum Everyone! I decided to change things up this week by doing a Friday reflections post instead of the normal Friday gratitude segment. I’ve been in a bit of a productivity rut lately but yesterday was as perfect as it gets and I wanted to share a few insights.
1. I have a record of not being able to work productively at home and the simplest step that always works for me guaranteed is to change my environment. Yesterday I had a meeting in the morning and then I had to meet up with a friend in the evening so it made sense to stay back at uni to work instead of wasting the hours to commute back home. The great advantage to working in a different setting (such as the library) is that it automatically just gives me focus.
2. Recently I downloaded an app called Quality Time which tracks how much time I spend on my phone further breaking it down based on the specific applications – I’m too ashamed to even mention the results so far just know that I’m working on cutting it down. The app also allows you to ‘scheduled breaks’ which prevents the user from accessing their phone during the period. For me, it was a blessing in disguise because lately I’ve developed a habit of consistently checking my notifications while working which usually disrupts my flow. For example, there was a certain hour where I blocked my phone and saw that in my period I had 73 notifications! Because I consistently check/ reply to my notifications I’m usually not consciouse of the amount of notifications I get so it was a shock to see the cumulative frequency. So blocking out time periods and removing all distractions helped me massively!
3. I’m a to-do list girl and I can’t function without my to do lists. This is quite a busy month for me so some days it feels like I have an endless list of things to do. Subhan’Allah prior to working yesterday these questions popped into my mind:
What is the intention behind what I’m doing every day? What is driving me? What is the purpose behind it?
Sometimes it’s very easy to get lost in tasks and forget the purpose behind why we do things. And stepping back to renew my intentions and to direct my purpose to Allah SWT before every task really helped me! And honestly, there was a notable difference in the focus and clarity that I had throughout the day. I even joy doing the things that I had procrastinated for days over. I’ve been listening to Oprah’s lifeclass sessions a lot lately and it’s strange how it reaffirms a lot of the Islamic beliefs that we have as Muslims especially on the importance of intentions.
4. Without a doubt, having Khushoo in Salah is one of the most difficult things. On days that I have a lot going on, there’s usually the temptation to rush Salah but yesterday I deliberately and consciously just told myself before every salah: This is my break. I just want to have a conversation and feel serenity during prayer. Subhan’Allah the result was amazing!
5. Lastly, I’ve been working hard lately on maintaining balance and harmony in everything that I do and to make sure that I’m taking care of my well being: mentally, physically and spiritually. As well as maintaining good relationships with people that are beloved to me so I capped off what was an amazing and productive day by spending quality time with awesome company.
And that’s it, I hope this information is beneficial for you all!