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The Response Impact

September 27, 2018 by  
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“When you can’t control what’s happening; challenge yourself to control the way you respond to what’s happening!  That’s where your power is!

Far too often, we work from a place of reaction versus a proactive approach.  Whether we have a bad day or good day is often dependent on the situation or person involved versus it being about how we CHOOSE for the day to be with respect to it being a good one or a bad one.

How many of you have seen someone with a severe disability yet seems to have a positive outlook on life and their personal situation and we have said to ourselves, “I could never have that positive attitude in that situation!” or “I couldn’t deal with that!”


Someone we know recently lost a loved one or they lost their only stream of income and seem to be coping quite well in spite of their circumstances and thought to ourselves…”I could never handle it as well as that person.”

All of us are human and none of us are exempt to unforseen occurances, yet we all have the CHOICE as to how we will respond to those situations.  We can think of a few individuals who were dealt a heavy blow in life and yet live or lived a positive life.  For example, Franklin Roosevelt who was paralyzed from the waist down from Polio BEFORE running for office.  Oprah Winfrey who was molested from the age of nine years old and conceived a child of rape at the age of fourteen and in spite of that is now one of the highest paid individuals in the world with a heart to serve others in the process.  Or Sylvester Stallone who at birth due to an accident during labor caused him paralysis in his face which affected his lips, tongue and chin which contributes to his slurred speech and deformity in his face…did he succumb to that incident?  No he used it to propel him to stardom with the Box Office Rocky Series and used those disabilities to create the character of Rocky!  And the list literally goes on and on.

We can choose to be a victim or to be victorious in spite of our situations and regardless of how inspired we are by others who choose to take adversity and use that as fuel for triumph; when faced with the slightest uncomfortability…we shrink.  Why?  For some, we just have to work harder at programming our minds to think words such as I CAN, COMMIT, UNSTOPPABLE!  So here are some tips that work, even for those who inspire others:


  1.  Prayer: I am a firm believer in the MOST HIGH!  What you have as a deficiency…he replenishes and gives in abundance.  NEVER go in prayer with doubt.  Always go with the mindset that HE is all capable and you have been equipped with all that is necessary to complete whatever task is before you.  Also remember…HE appears to you how YOU see him.  So if you see him as the all end be all, that is how he will appear.  However, if you come in doubt, don’t be surprised when the thing you are praying for does not come to fruition and the response to whatever is before you will be more of an obstacle versus something to propel you to higher levels.
  2. Believe: Believe that you are ENOUGH!  You need nothing more but what your life experiences and education has brought you thus far.   If there is more to be learned; just as you did before…you WILL learn it.  You are equipped.
  3. Surround yourself with like minded individuals.  If you are around nay sayers and doubters and those who respond negatively to life in general, so shall you be!  If you do not have that within your circle; limit the amount of time you spend with those with that type of mindset.  It WILL effect you and not in the way in needs to.  To replace that, read books that are written by those who have come through from the other side, knows what it is to push through and use that information to assist in your journey of creating the CAN DO mind and the mind of it is not the situation, but rather how I respond to it!


  1. Never relinguish to others what only YOU can hold!  Only you can control what your thoughts are.  No one has to know them, no one can strip you of it unless you CHOOSE to give that type of power away to someone else.  If someone is speaking negatively over what you can and cannot do or accomplish; utilize the favorite quote…”I can show you better than I can tell you.”  If you look at the time of slavery, or in the cases of domestic abuse.  It is not the physical abuse of the body that the oppressor seeks to control, it is the MIND!  That is because once the mind is under control, the need for abuse will be unnecessary.  The abuse is just a means to an end…mind control!
  2. Never look at yourself as a victim!  A victim mindset will always look to others to fix it and make things right.  You can determine that by your thoughts and how you choose to respond to trauma, a negative experience and so on.  You are not defined by that moment, you are however defined by how you choose to respond by asking yourself…what was the lesson in that moment?  What can I take away that can empower me and others?  How will I use this negative experience to strive to be the best version of myself and be not just a survivor, but an OVERCOMER?
  3. Never think that you are in control of life!  Only one is and that is not you or I.  When you realize that, it removes the pressure of that and just allows you to focus on what you can control and that is your responses.  No time wasted, just time and energy on what you can control because your thoughts precede your actions; negatively or positively!  Elevate your mind and the body will follow!

Is this process easy?  For some no, in fact for most…No!  However, the mind is like any other muscle in your body…it can be trained and if trained and used enough, it will conform to the new look you are seeking.  Keep these things in mind:

  1. Think of the origin of what you are feeling:  Is it coming from a place of hurt, pain, or anger.  Address that within yourself FIRST and then address the other person or situation so that you will give it its proper emotion and more importantly…the proper response!
  2. Examine the outcomes of your responses: Are the positive responses or negative ones.  For every action there is a reaction so what reactions are you receiving from your responses?  If negative, look at ways in which you are saying things.  Analyze if was something that required your response at all.
  3. Think of the person you want to be…not the person you are currently working on: We are all a work in progress!  Keep the end result in mind and work backwards!

If you do not plan, you plan to fail.  So after reading this…ask yourself the following Self Reflective questions:

  1. What will you do differently to respond to negative events/situations that may come your way?
  2. What will be your step by step process in order to accomplish the best response possible? 

Getting Emotional About Emotional Intelligence

August 23, 2018 by  
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“I can’t believe I said that.  What was I thinking?”

“I didn’t mean what I said, I only said that because I was angry.”

“When I get upset, I lose it and anything and anyone is liable to get it.”

Or how about…

“I can’t control my emotions; I just say what comes to my mind at the time no matter how bad it is.”

This is a clear sign of an individual who has not mastered themselves, their emotions; thus lacking Emotional Intelligence! You may ask, what is Emotional Intelligence?  Emotional Intelligence is the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one’s emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically.

When one does not have Emotional Intelligence, it can damage personal and professional relationships as well as the relationship that matters the most and that is your Spiritual Relationship with your creator. However; on the contrary, for those who have mastered the ability to control their emotions…the positive impact is key to personal, professional and spiritual success.

There are two categories with respect to achieving Emotional Intelligence and that is:

Personal Skills and Competencies

Social Skills and Competencies

Personal Skills and Competencies

Self Awareness and Self Mastery

  1. When one is aware of self, one knows their triggers. When a person is aware of their triggers they can learn when to walk away before a situation escalates. This does take practice; however, if one wants to master Emotional Intelligence this is something that if done over time…can be a personal deficiency that one can overcome. If you know your trigger words, if you know what your body feels when a situation is getting out of hand then you can MASTER the art of walking away!

Self Regulation

  1. My mother used to say, “when you know who you are dealing with, you act accordingly.” In essence, you can adapt to certain individuals if you know how they operate. Knowing how one operates allows you to have an upper hand so that what once would have been a trigger is now your weapon of defense. You have taken the sting out of what could have been a potentially toxic situation by becoming desensitized to it due to being prepared.   This allows you to develop self control.


  1. When you achieve something that at one time you felt was impossible…i.e. Emotional Intelligence, it gives you motivation to continue that good behavior. You realize you are developing good character and self control which is a reason to feel motivated and inspired. It also supports the idea of commitment; commitment to continue this course of action.  This is truly transformational.

Social Skills and Competencies


  1. Hurt people; hurt people! When you can empathize with someone else then you can ignore certain behaviors. Our society promotes having to have the last word and not letting someone have a “one up” on you. In reality being able to walk away shows strength!  When you can put yourself in someone else’s shoes even in their darkest hour says much more about you then the person who is the oppressor.  This is also an opportunity to be a wayshower to those who have never seen what that looks like.  This brings life to the phrase, “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.”  Develop others while you are developing yourself.

Social Skills

When you master Emotional Intelligence it allows you to learn skills that for some they will never learn in a lifetime and that is Conflict Resolution and Collaboration and Cooperation. This also develops Leadership Skills.  This brings about an opportunity to strengthen your position and not your argument.  Articulate how you feel, not show it in a negative way.  This helps you to be the change agent.  As Ghandi said, “be the change you want to see in the world.”  There can be no conflict if you do not take part in it.

When you continue to strive to master Emotional Intelligence, you learn to manage and lessen negative relationships with others, yourself and your Lord. The negative impact that it has when you choose to give in at every comment or action made against you looks like this:

Say things that are hurtful vs. helpful: We have all said things that we wish once they have exited our mouths; it could be taken back. Words hurt, damage and can even kill.  Even if not physically which we know can happen; the internal damage to the soul can actually kill a person to the point of being in essence the Walking Dead.

Allow Shayton (Satan/Devil) to take control: When you don’t master yourself; someone else will. Our sworn enemy will use this as long as he sees this is a weakness within you.  Not having Self Control or Emotional Intelligence will cause you to do things that are not pleasing to our creator which will be something we will have to answer for eventually.  The absolute goal of the devil.  You would never follow the footsteps of an open enemy, so think about this each time you want to give in to your “emotions.”  Ask yourself, if I do or say this…who am I really following?

Oppressive to others: This is something that even God has made impermissible to himself. Although he is control of ALL creation, he never oppresses them and thus have commanded us not to as well.  Being oppressive to another one of God’s creation can and will only hurt YOU in the end.  Whether you believe in “you reap what you sow” or “karma”…either way, you will pay for that action, so be clear to make a good spiritual reputation with others and our Lord.

Damage Relationships: Ever realize after doing or saying something damaging to a friend, spouse or colleague…the relationship is never quite the same? When we fail to display Emotional Intelligence we damage relationships and at times we don’t have the opportunity to make it right ever again.

Personal Stress/Poor Health: When you allow yourself to be controlled by our open enemy and you are screaming, yelling and fighting it can cause heart complications and high blood pressure…all things that can cause tremendous health issues and worst; death. Is what that person said or did worth your very life?

Here are some tips to help overcome being reactive versus being proactive:

  • Pay attention to how you react/behave
  • Take ownership for your behavior
  • Acknowledge your emotional “triggers”
  • Healthy eating
  • Positive Thinking
  • LISTEN (Active Listening)
  • Avoid complaining/drama
  • Read Qur’an, Islamic Studies or Self Help Books, Listening to Motivational Lectures & Speakers
  • Surround yourself with others who are Emotionally Intelligent-Study their behaviors/responsesSo get EMOTIONAL about Emotional Intelligence so that it can motivate you towards positive change.


  • So in closing, we cannot simply pray for Emotional Intelligence…it is something that we have to also work towards in order to HONOR that prayer of wanting to be a better person. Allah (God) says that he does not change a condition within a people until they FIRST change it within themselves. In other words, once he sees the effort…he will make it easier for you.

5 Steps To Getting Out Of Your Own Way

July 25, 2018 by  
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“I’m going to start eating healthy.” “I’m going to start working out.” “I’m going to start repairing my credit and finances.” “I’m going to make better choices with respect to choosing a life partner.”  “I’m going to start my own business this year.” “I’m going to do what I need to do to have a better relationship with God.”

Sounds familiar?

Of course, these are but a few of the promises we make to ourselves each week, each month, each year and we break them time and time again although we know that if we followed through…it would be to our benefit.  The question is…Why do we NOT complete the task that would make our lives better?  In many cases, it is not due to feeling unworthy to having any of these things; however, we get in our own way of success! 

You may be saying to yourself…no I don’t!  Or you may be saying…you might be on to something!  The first step to getting out of your own way is to acknowledge the ways in which you do so that you can discontinue the behavior and adapt new ones.  Acknowledgement is literally half the battle!

Here are 5 Tips to getting out of your OWN way:

  1. Get Clear On What It Is You Actually Want

First you have to get very clear about what it is YOU want, not what everyone else tells you should want.  This is a major distraction to fulfilling your goals.  When you place energy where it should not be, it takes away from where your energy should be and that is on what makes your heart sing.  If you are unsure as to what that would be then ask yourself these few questions…what would I do if I only had to answer to me?  How does this make me feel inside when I imagine myself achieving it.  If you are still unsure of doing what you want versus what someone else wants, try this…flip a coin!  Yeah just that simple.  See, when you flip a coin; as the coin is in the air…you are very clear which side you want that coin to land.  THAT tells you what is really in your heart.  Once you know what it is you want, then HONOR it by researching what is required to accomplishing it.  This will provide you the blueprint as to what will be your first, second and third step to bringing it to fruition.  Knowing what you want and being very clear as to your goals and your why provides you with a strong foundation to make it possible.

2. Reject The Mindset Of Rejection

Many of us do not even begin to embark on the goals we want for ourselves because we literally have a fear of failure.  Be MORE afraid of being unproductive.  Each day that passes is a day that you can move closer to your goals or further away.  Time is something that NO amount of money can replace!  Many of us focus on past situations that we deem as “failures”.  Let’s redirect and put things into perspective.  As a Life/Business Coach, I do this with my clients, so let’s try it.  Divide your life in 3 stages (For example, if you are 45…then divide your life in these stages i.e. First stage: Birth to 15 years old.  Second stage: 16 Years of age to 30 Years of Age.  Third Stage: 31 years of age to 45 years of age.)  In each stage of your life, write down your accomplishments, regardless of how small they may be and consider what was happening in your life at those moments and see for yourself what you have overcome!  This will assist in helping you rid yourself of the fear of failure because what it shows is that you are actually more successful than you are a “failure.” 

Also, give yourself permission to give yourself a second chance.  Be gentle with yourself!  Stop associating past failures with new ventures!  You can’t have a positive life with a negative mindset!

Utilize the Mathematical Success Formula.  For every ten NO’s, you will eventually receive a YES!  Don’t take things personal, that is the natural order of things, but if you give up, you will never get to your YES!  So understand, you will “fail” at some things, but make use of this as a teachable moment.  What could I have done differently?  Instead of using words like I took an L (referring to Loser), flip it and change it to I took an L (referring to Learning or Lesson).  Here are some examples of those who did just that…Tyler Perry.  He was homeless and wrote his first play that turned into a major film…Diary of a Mad Black Woman!  P. Diddy who was fired from the major record label he was working for and is now the owner of Bad Boy Records and a successful Entrepreneur in fashion, cologne and clothing.  Russell Simmons, who when he launched the careers of Run DMC was flat broke.  Oprah, Iyanla Vanzant and the list goes on!  If they accepted their first no or even ninth NO, would they be where they are today?

3. Limited Beliefs

Napolean Hill said, “Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it will achieve!”  You get what you expect!  When you replace negative beliefs with positive ones, your brain will actually TAKE OVER the job of accomplishing that possibility for you.  In fact; it will EXPECT you to achieve that outcome!  Try this every single day before you start your day and before you go to sleep for the next 30 days and see if the mind does not reprogram itself and do what is necessary to make possible what you have been feeding it.  First write down as many Positive Affirmations that you can think of with regard to yourself, that you truly believe in your heart even if you have never uttered it to another soul.  Each day and night for 30 days, speak those affirmations out loud.

Remove the tanglibles that will sabatoge your desired outcome.  For example, set a goal to do an event to launch that business.  Publish that book, lose that weight or save a particular amount of money.  Upon doing this…TELL EVERYONE ABOUT IT!  Why?  Because it will hold you accountable for it…this will be your accountability factor. You do not want to fail, so you just up’d the stakes by informing others.  Keeping it to yourself allows you to walk away as in the past.  Get out of your own way!  Believing in yourself is an attitude and attitude is everything.  Attitudes become a belief system and belief systems become your way of life!  YOU are responsible of letting go of negative thoughts especially those placed on you by others (Family, Teachers, Society and even Parents). 

4. Procrastination

Procrastination is the killer of all dreams!  Each day start your day after speaking your positive affirmations, with a “To Do” list that includes having a timer for each task.  You can even make it the night before.  Start your day off early when it is quiet.  This requires going to bed early the night before as well.  Procrastination is due to a lack of organization.  Do you see how being organized allows you to be PRODUCTIVE?  I learned from one of my previous coaches when I was suffering with the disease of procrastination…eat the frog!  Now you might be like…excuse me?  Eating a frog may seem repulsive to some, but if necessary for survival…you would!  In our day to day life we have to look at this analogy the same way…in order for me to survive, to thrive I have to do what may be hard, but once it is done…the rest is easy.  Start your day off with what is most difficult and everything else on your “to do” list will be a breeze.  Here are 2 tips for those who truly struggle with this:

a. No distractions (Phone, TV and maybe even radio)

b. Clean the space in which you will be working.  Again, organization is the key!

Practice Persistence.  Push through and each time you do, it will be a motivating factor to continue whereas before you would have given up.  It also becomes the NEW habit and a good one at that.  For many, you look at the end goal and become overwhelmed; thus your inaction deemed…procrastination!  Break assignments down to one step at a time…this is less overwhelming and creates progress.  As a bonus…get yourself an accountability partner.  Someone that holds you to your own promises and helps you get out of your own way!  This can be a good friend, a business coach or life coach.

5. Get Rid Of Negative Influences

These are the naysayers, those that put a negative spin to EVERYTHING.  Associate yourself with people who inspire you to take action.  Ask yourself…who would that be in my circle?  If you don’t have any…create a new circle.  Follow people on Social Media that are motivators and for 10 minutes in the morning after your affirmations…say a prayer to remove negative people from your life, listen to a lecture or a brief inspirational video to get you on the right mindset and minimize the time you spend with those who are not trying to accomlish anything!  That includes family and life long friends.  Does that mean totally disassociate yourself?  NO!  The operative word is “minimize”  This is so you can surround yourself with likeminded individuals that will inspire, motivate and help you elevate.  Attend networking events.  This is a great start if you are looking to create a new circle.  Be the connect you need! 

If you follow these 5 Tips…in no time you will accomplish the goals you set for yourself and you will step out of your own way and create a new path of success. 

Asiya Nasir

Chief Empowerment Officer/Founder of J.E.S.S.I.C.A. Cares




Reflections…Journey To Finding You

December 22, 2017 by  
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Surveys, Ratings, Mystery Shoppers, Performance Reviews and the list goes on…we live in a society that promotes being analytical about a situation, relationship or event.  We are constantly being analyzed about our lives, our daily interactions and we analyze what we experience in our lives.  If we patronize a financial institution and a policy we deem is unfair presents itself…we call for change.  With regard to the increase in police brutality amongst individuals of color…we call for reform.

Yet within ourselves…we never look within to analyze our behaviors, we never take the time to do self-reflection.  We never call for change within ourselves.  In the world that we live in today, everything is just go, go, go.  Leaving one to feel like there is no time for introspection and self-reflection.  The reality of it is, in order to grow, develop and become a better individual…we can’t afford not to MAKE the time.  Many have attempted to embark on this journey and have found it very overwhelming and therefore have left it off.

When one looks at something with a negative connotation, it encourages that person to just leave well enough alone.  However, when it comes to personal, spiritual and professional development…we have to change that perception.  Self reflection and introspection is a necessity to positive growth…operative word; POSITIVE.  There are beneficial reasons in which we can look at this self work.  Here are some healthy views with respect to self-reflection; especially as we look into starting a new year:

Tip#1: It Allows You To Notice Negative Patterns


Tip#2: Focused On The Bigger Picture

Tip# 3: Prevents You From Worrying About What You Cannot Control


Tip# 4: Face Your Fears

Tip# 5: Clearly Defines When You Are Most At Peace

Tip# 6: Self Awareness


Tip# 7: Conscious Decisions vs. Emotional Decisions




May The Negative Force Be With YOU: 8 Tips for Avoiding Negative Thinking

November 27, 2017 by  
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So often we are affected by negative thinking; not realizing that what you think about you bring about!  The great thing about the mind is that you can reprogram it for positivity and productivity.  Here are 8 tips to help you avoid negative thinking and give it back to those who want to give it to you:

Tip #1: Set Clear Boundaries

You have to have clear and set boundaries for yourself with regard to allowing negativity to be in your midst, your mind, your heart and your soul.  No one has the right to dump their negativity on you.  So often we feel we have to listen to someone’s negativity in order to be considered a good friend…WRONG!

You control your space and what goes in it.  If the conversation is not serving you well, not elevating your mind, your thought process in life, then WE don’t need to engage in this type of dialogue.  Your mind is like a computer, when a virus enters the hard drive everything in it becomes corrupt and as a computer has Anti Viruses to keep what you have stored from being damaged…so you must have such blockers to preserve all that is positive within you. 

Now don’t get me wrong, at times we all need a shoulder to cry on, a listening ear…but it should NOT be a free for all to allow someone to simply dump that type of energy on you.  You cap it, you limit when you say…ENOUGH! Which brings me to my next tip…

Tip #2: Avoid Complainers-Focus on Solutions

You will be amazed at how so many individuals just like to complain.  It’s almost as if they live for negativity and are addicted to it.  We all have that friend/relative that no matter the time, day of the week, month or even year…when you see their name on your phone as it rings you almost have to brace yourself and say a little prayer as to if you are going to answer the phone or not and if you do; after speaking with them you feel like you need a therapy session.  This is where you apply BOUNDARIES!  Once you see the person repeating what they have already complained about, this is your cue to ask…so what’s the solution?  Then offer to brainstorm together ideas to look  at it from a positive perspective and seek solutions to get out of a negative one.

This also teaches people how you are to be dealt with and how you will deal with them.  If they want to remain negative, they will stop calling you.  PROBLEM SOLVED!

Tip #3: Pick & Choose Your Battles

Everything does not require a response, not everything requires your energy.  When you devote so much time to the non-essential, the non factors…it WILL drain you.  Be clear on what and who needs to be addressed. The rest…continue to observe and make mental notes.  Silence truly is GOLDEN and not saying anything IS saying something.  Sometimes less is more.

Tip #4: Change Your Language

Words have POWER!!!  Avoid using absolutes such as NEVER & ALWAYS because the reality of it is…it isn’t ALWAYS & NEVER.  When you use words like that it distorts the truth and can have you assessing a situation in a skewed view.  Remember, when you speak…YOU are also listening.  So don’t be your worst enemy!

Tip #5: Don’t Take Things Personal

Sometimes your perception of something can be so off the mark because you made something about you and it truly has/had nothing at all to do with you.  That other person may have had a bad day, received some bad news so their interaction with you may be off.  ASK and assess if it is about you or something else. 

Also, when someone does/says something negative towards you, if you know in your heart of hearts it is untrue then do not internalize that.  Hurt people, hurt people.  Bring clarity to each situation so that you do not take someone else’s negative behavior/speech/tone personally.

Tip #6: Be The Positivity You Want To See

Just as a grumpy person can bring moral and a mood down, so does a happy, positive person.  Energy is felt and it is contagious.  Be infectious with positivity.  Give a compliment, a smile, say good morning, ask someone how are they doing and truly LISTEN to the response.  This will keep your mind off of the negativity you see/hear daily just by bringing a little sunshine to someone else’s life.

Tip #7: Let Go & Move On

Sometimes we bring about our own pain and negativity by holding onto things and people who evoke less than happy emotions.  For example, if you have photos of someone who hurt you…why are you still in possession of those photos?  Release the negativity by getting rid of its reminder.  Delete that number, text messages from that individual because each time you look at it no matter the time…it will bring you back to that space in time and with all its negativity.  CLOSE that chapter.  Let go of people who hurt you, who no longer serve you well.  Remove them internally and then externally from your circle.  Negativity is like a malignant cancer, it will get worse unless removed.  Move on!  Sometimes we hold unto things/people who God is trying to protect us from.

Tip #8: Prayer

When you pray, you are asking the one who knows and sees all, the one with Infinite wisdom.  Ask the thing we are most afraid to ask and that is to allow you to see things for what they really are and to see people for who they really are.  Pray for guidance, discernment and then ask for acceptance.  You can never go wrong or live a negative life when taking HIS lead!

Maintaining a Mental Space of GRATITUDE

November 14, 2017 by  
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As I sit in my office…I’m thinking and reflecting on the fact that November is the month known for its infamous holiday…Thanksgiving and it amazed me how many can think of things they are grateful for on that particular day; yet throughout the year suffer with depression (not due to mental illness), unhappiness and just feelings of sadness.

So I thought to myself how can one remain thankful EVERYDAY?  I came up with 5 Daily Tips one could utilize in order to stay in a state of Gratitude, Positivity and Productivity.

Tip #1: Never Compare Yourself To Others

Never compare yourself to others because you have no idea what that person has gone through in order to achieve what they have.  It’s similar to an iceberg.  While you only see the tip, underneath the surface lies a VAST block of ice.  So while you compare yourself to someone else, you may not see the vast block of possible childhood trauma, financial difficulty, personal sacrifice and hardships that person has had to endure or is enduring.  Remember, you are not in competition with anyone but YOURSELF.  If you focus on you, you will see your own personal growth in one area or another and isn’t that the goal??  Isn’t that what you want to see?  Your progess?  As long as that is occurring; you are moving in the right direction.  This takes us to the next tip.

Tip #2: Acknowledge Your Growth (No Matter How Small)

Far too often we minimize the necessary steps needed in order to achieve the final destination.  Those “small” steps as you call them are CRUCIAL to your personal development in every way.  When you minimize them, it takes away the joy of the journey, thus your proper gratitude to the situation, the moment and your life’s journey.  Imagine your FAVORITE cake!  Now it doesn’t just miraculously appear.  It took the baker to implement just the right amount of ingredients…the flour, the eggs, vanilla and whatever ingredients is required and if this cake were to be missing any one of those things and even if the amount of each ingredient were off…that cake would NOT be the same.  It would not be that masterpiece you just envisioned.  Such is the same with you and I.  Without each step, each accomplishment…the end result would not be the same.  It will not be whole, nor complete.  Each small step in the right direction is an indication that you are one step/ingredient closer to your goal.  It’s all in your perception.  Change the clouded lenses of which you are seeing your accomplishments (large or small)  Celebrate them and see how your level of gratitude increases daily. 

Tip #3: Volunteer

When you think you have problems, take a look, or step in the shoes of someone less fortunate than you and see if you really have a reason to complain.  Volunteer at a homeless shelter and see if the apartment you wished were a house is now not that bad after all.  Volunteer at a Food Pantry/Soup Kitchen and see if you’re not grateful for the items you have in your cabinets/refrigerator and that they are not suffice for you.  Even better; that you yourself have enough to even donate.  Volunteer at a hospital/hospice and see how blessed you are to be of good health.  When you walk away…AHHH there it is, you CAN walk away; there lies the blessing and the moment of gratitude.  If possible, take your children to volunteer so that you can plant the seed of consistent gratitude in them as well.

Tip #4: Watch Motivational Videos/Read Positive Quotes

Make it a point to google a motivational video about life, achievements, not giving up, self-esteem and the list goes on at least once a day or every other day in the morning or before you start your day.  Make this part of your routine to get your day started on the right foot and on a positive one.  It has a way of changing your mood as you face that boss or that contract you want to close.  Build up your defense for the negativity that you will encounter throughout the day so that you will not be void of what is necessary for you to accomplish your goals and daily tasks.  Do not hoard this piece of advice for yourself, share it in the workplace and write a daily positive quote in the staff lunch area.  At home; write a positive/inspirational quote for the entire family to benefit.  Put in on the refrigerator for everyone to see prior to going to work/school.  You never know…that positive quote may be just what someone needed for that boost of confidence to take that test or put in that request for that promotion at the job.

Tip#5: Nightly Journal

Each night before you lay your head to rest…obtain a journal where you can write down ALL that you are thankful for for that day in spite of the fact that the day from the outside looking in…may have looked like a bad one.  When you can remember things such as…I woke up this morning, I drove to work, I came home, I hugged and kissed my family upon return.  These are the things that for some…no longer have.  So it leaves you in a state of gratitude, a state of half full vs half empty.  Not a bad way to end the day!!!

Domestic Violence Awareness Month: B.O.S.S. In The Workplace

October 17, 2017 by  
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Bringing, Optimism back to Secure, Stability in the Workplace

Statistics from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence:

  • In the United States, twenty people every minute are victims of physical violence by a partner.
  • In a typical day, Domestic Violence hotlines take more than 20,000 calls.
  • A study of homicides including Domestic Violence revealed that 20% of the time the murder victim is NOT the Domestic Violence victim, but instead family members, friends, co workers, neighbors and bystanders.

With statistics such as those aforementioned, it would be impossible to think as an Entrepreneur, Manager or Executive Director that this epidemic will not touch your workplace in some way.  Either one of your employees, volunteers or Board Members may be living with Domestic Violence directly or they are close to someone who is and due to that fact…you will have to address this issue at some point.  Sooner rather than later.

I am a firm believer in being proactive versus reactive.  As an Entrepreneur or Executive Director, if you asked your employees directly if they were a victim of Domestic Violence; your response would most likely be NO.  However; creating an environment that encourages, empowers and supports will allow employees to seek the needed help while for once holding their dignity.

In order to address an issue, one has to become informed.  What are the signs that one of your staff members may be living under abusive circumstances.  What does that look like?  Let’s take a look:

  • Visible/Physical Injuries
  • Depression
  • Excessive Absenteeism/Tardiness
  • Isolation from Co workers
  • Fear upon receiving a call or visit from partner
  • Anxiety at the close of the day
  • Lack of Concentration

Now an employer may think…this is a personal problem; this is none of my business!  As long as they do their job, I will utilize the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.  You may want to reevaluate that thought process once you see the direct effects it may have on your company/organization:

  • Domestic Violence victims lose 8 million paid days of work each year
  • Domestic Violence impact on businesses exceeds 8.3 billion a year, which includes 727.8 million for lost productivity.

As a good employer, you would be remiss to not address this.  So how can your company combat this epidemic?  Here are a few ideas:

*Protect Their Confidentiality: Upon being made aware that an employee is a victim of Domestic Violence; maintaining confidentiality regarding their co workers will ensure that that employee will continue to confide in you so that you can redirect them to the proper resources to assist.  In their personal environment, trust is something that is lacking so providing them a space to feel that they can trust again is the first step to healing.

*You Are Not The Expert: Acknowledging that while you may wear many hats; being a Domestic Violence expert may not be one of them.  Understanding that someone who chooses to leave an abusive relationship is at their most danger.  This will place the importance of a strategic action plan and that executing that to be of benefit of all parties involved, should include the experts. Referring them to Domestic Violence Shelters, allowing them to make the calls to these various support groups at the workplace will be beneficial to securing safety while seeking help.  If your company has an Employee Assistance Program, refer them to it.  This may be of much benefit as well. 

*Flexibility: Knowing that this may be an issue that is beyond an employees control, being flexible with regard to tardiness or absenteeism within reason may help.  Having some form of income may be one of the ways in which this employee will utilize as their “escape plan” so taking that away will assist in keeping the victim as such…a victim.  Working with the employee regarding their schedule on a temporary basis can make all the difference in helping that person maintain hope.

*Staff Training: Without making mention of the person in order to protect their confidentiality, having a staff meeting during Domestic Violence Awareness Month and periodically will allow co workers to become more aware of such a delicate topic and more sympathetic to those they may feel are a victim to it; thus disarming a hostile environment.  This may also allow employees to assist their friends/family of whom they know are victims of Domestic Violence with the knowledge you provide in the workplace.  This empowers all involved.  It sends a message to all that as their B.O.S.S. you truly care and are there for them.  Knowledge is power.  Invite respresentatives of reputable Non Profits that support this cause to speak to your employees. 

Developing a staff of longevity, empowering your staff beyond the paycheck is showing them that you care and is invaluable.  Domestic Violence is a slow death of self esteem, work productivity and a killer to a healthy work community and social community at large.  It takes a village to support those who may not be in a position to fight for themselves. Create an environment of a healthy, supportive and empowering workplace.  

Healthy Self Esteem and Higher Education: Is There a Link?

June 7, 2017 by  
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Healthy Self Esteem and Higher Education: Is There a Link?

I CAN is 100 times more important than IQ

How important such a quote/saying can mean to a child when hearing this from a parent. Most children if not all want to please their parents and make them proud.  This is also a desire as children become young adults.  Statistics have proven that with the right parent involvement, students’ academic achievements will and have improved, self esteem increases, and motivation to do better becomes much more evident.

While getting an education is extremely important, quotes like the one above instill in our children the belief that they have the ability to BE whatever it is they desire, ACHIEVE the grades they desire and work towards and that they possess all that is necessary to make their dreams come true. This will enable a child to have the motivation to press on even in the face of difficult classes and even teachers.

One may think my child does not have a self esteem issue; my child is confident in themselves, I do not need to do more than what I am doing, I just wish my child would achieve higher grades and live up to their full potential. Well, let’s take a closer look at the facts of what our children may be thinking and yet never utter aloud:

According to Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem, commissioned by the Dove Self-Esteem Fund in 2008:

  • Seven in ten girls believe they are not good enough or do not measure up in some way, including their looks, performance in school and relationships with friends and family members
  • 62% of all girls feel insecure or not sure of themselves
  • More than half (57%) of all girls say they don’t always tell their parents certain things about them because they don’t want them to think badly of them
  • The top wish among all girls surveyed, is for their parents to communicate better with them, which includes more frequent and open conversations about what is happening in their own lives
  • 78% of girls with low self-esteem admit that it is hard to feel good in school when you do not feel good about how you look (compared to 54% of girls with high self-esteem)

These statistics I share with you is in no way an attempt to make you feel that all is lost in our youths and that there is nothing that can be done as parents; however as we all know, knowledge is power and by knowing the facts of this common yet rarely discussed topic, as parents you can better equip yourself in assisting your child in not becoming a statistic.

Parents’ words and actions play a critical role in fostering positive self-esteem in young ladies and in young men and it is not as hard as one may think. Simply applying a few simple techniques and habits will help tremendously in boosting your child’s self esteem and self worth and by doing so will boost their educational experience and ultimately their grades.

Here are 6 Easy Tips in Helping Increase Your Child’s Self Esteem/Self Worth:

  1. On Monday mornings of each week, Google an inspirational and motivating quote on self esteem and attach it to the refrigerator so that your child will be reminded each time they visit the refrigerator. If your child does not live with you, text it to them each Monday morning ending each inspirational quote with a personal word of encouragement from you the parent; such as, I know you can do it, I’m so proud of what you have accomplished, Keep up the great work.
  2. Take time once a month or when their home on a break to take your child out, just the two of you either out to breakfast/lunch or dinner at their favorite restaurant. This allows you to have an open line of communication; allowing you to ask those questions that maybe they would not feel comfortable answering amongst siblings or other family members. You will be amazed at what your child will share with you when they feel that you want to spend quality time with them.
  3. Incorporate something like a “Book Club”. The “Book Club” allows you to share a Self Improvement book with one another. This helps in opening positive dialogue amongst the two about the chapters you agree to read and it encourages your child to embrace positive ways in which to view themselves. Books that I recommend are the following: Developing the Leader Within You by John C. Maxwell, The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale, Awaken the Giant Within by Anthony Robbins and The Success Principles by Jack Canfield.
  4. Quarterly, find family members and close friends to share with you what they admire about your child and share it with them. This allows them to see how they are truly being perceived by those who know them best; thus shifting negative thoughts they may be holding inside to positive ones.
  5. Annually, host a family “Goal” Dinner. Each family member participating in the dinner will share what their future goals are; your child will share their educational goals. Each family member, i.e. sister, brother, father or mother is then assigned as an accountability partner. This family member will ensure that their loved one will keep focus and assist in minimizing distractions, remind them to keep their eyes on the prize of graduating with their degree, achieving a certain GPA or stepping out of their comfort zone and joining a club on campus or fraternity/sorority. Each year thereafter, part of the dinner will be to celebrate such accomplishments and share new goals for each upcoming year.
  6. Sharing a motivational video from You Tube on either their Facebook page or directly to their email.

Consistently practicing these tips and staying committed to them will guarantee a change in your child’s self image to one of greatness. I would like to share with you my personal story. I am a mother of three children, one twenty two, one twenty and my youngest, eighteen. My oldest child from the time he was six years old, was bullied at school. Not only from his peers, but by his teachers as well and it took a tremendous toll on his self esteem. I saw my vibrant child become introverted and isolated from his peers. I encouraged him to talk to me during one of our one on one times with one another at his favorite restaurant…Red Lobster. There is where he began to tell me what was happening to him and how he was viewing himself. In many ways I wish I never had to hear it as no parent likes to see their child in pain, but at the same time I was happy he told me because now I knew what was in his heart and in knowing so, I could then begin to assist in the healing process. I applied the same principles and tips that I share with you today and his self esteem has improved dramatically. After being told that he would never learn to read by his first grade teacher to his fifth grade teacher telling him she didn’t like him because he was different from the other children, my son accomplished graduating with honors and is the CEO of his new comic book company; Fearless Fantasy Ink. The journey I shared with my son and the results is not something that happened and changed over night; however, with as I mentioned before…CONSISTENCY, you too will see a shift and one for the better with your child.

In conclusion, I would like to leave you with one last quote:

The difference between school and life? In school, you’re taught a lesson and then given a test. In life, you’re given a test that teaches you a lesson. Tom Bodett

Obtaining good grades will assist in graduating from college, obtaining a healthy sense of self worth will assist in graduating in this thing we call life. As parents we can assist our children in mastering the ability to obtain and more importantly…maintain a healthy sense of self worth and self esteem.  

Be A Great Woman of Islam TODAY: Learn the Tricks of Shayton

December 1, 2016 by  
Filed under Blog

This topic could not have come at a more appropriate time.

Make no mistake about it, Trump is in office by the Qadar of Allah and while we may not understand it YET…in Allah’s infinite wisdom this happened  and if not careful; Shayton can and will use it against you to lower your standards as a Muslimah and slave of Allah.  These things my Muslimahs are tricks of Shayton.  So let us review, the tricks of Shayton and FACE what isn’t working.  Meaning within ourselves so that Shayton cannot use it against us.  FACE what has you struggling because if you are struggling now…as prophesied when the minor and major signs start to appear THAT will not be the time when your IMAN will appear.  We will discuss 3 different tricks that Shayton uses and is going to use during this time:

1.) Denial: The definition of denial is a refusal to believe or accept.  How many of us are in denial right now that Shayton tricks us and that we keep falling for the same tricks.  For example, when I get out of school, I’ll wear my hijab!  It’s because of my friends or family that don’t cover is the reason why I don’t cover.  It’s not safe to wear hijab now!  Or the famous one…Allah knows what’s in my heart, he knows my struggle…Allah is most merciful.  Lastly, how many of you are in denial that this election is even a sign of the last days?  Allah makes things obligatory for us for a reason and what is obligatory is just that…a non negotiable.  If you can stand before your Lord on the day of Judgment with those excuses then I fear for you.  There are sisters dying in other countries to wear the crown you are so ready to discard.  There are our sisters in Islam like Khawlah, Maryam and Sumayyah who lived for the preservation of Islam, who lived for the honor in wearing hijab and died to be identified as a Muslim.  Which is the whole reason why Allah gave us, the women of Islam  the command to wear it…it is our duty and honor to represent this Ummah & these women!!!  Don’t allow your denial of the punishment of Allah for disobedience to keep you from owning it or in the time that we live.  We know when we’re on deen; there’s a good feel about it…but when we’re not, you know it; you feel it!  Don’t surpress it by the trick of Shyaton in the form of denial.  Don’t deny this deficiency in your worship to Allah.  OWN it and then ask Allah to remove that because its like that saying, if you lie to yourself enough that you will eventually believe it.  Don’t fool yourself right up until Judgment Day and have to face it then.  Work side by side with Allah to assist you.  It amazes me of how recognition in a thing and then decision making is so difficult even when it means your life.  We see this in drug addicts all the time; knowing that the drugs is destroying their life, yet cannot come to the logicial decision to leave it off.  Defending & justifying a bad situation is a sugar coated way of saying DENIAL.  We cannot afford to be in denial…Shayton is banking on it.

2.) Fear: The definition of fear is anxiety caused by real or possible danger, pain.  Notice this man (Trump) has not even addressed this country, hasn’t passed a bill and my timeline on Facebook was literally flooded with how it is permissible to take off our hijabs, moving to Canada, Africa and Saudi Arabia.  Listen close…there will come a time when we all are going to have to face the major signs of the end.  You living outside of the U.S. will not change that and until Allah takes our souls…we will be tested.  This is a GUARANTEE…Allah says do you think you will say you believe and not be tested?  The women before us didn’t take times of trials as a reason to dumb down their deen, they used this as a moment to stand firm side by side with the men of Islam.


Khansa- Her children

Sumayyah-First martyr

Maryam-Modesty tested; she didn’t run

Asma-Preservation of the Prophet

Hafsah-Preserved the Qur’an

And this man gets elected and all that goes out the window?  Islam is what we need to be thinking of preserving.  Fear…is it real?  Yes, but Allah warns us to fear him and hime alone…THAT is Tawheed!  Shayton will use fear as a trick to shy from your honor in being a Muslimah.  Don’t allow him.  He wants your soul…your very hereafter.  Don’t allow fear of Allah’s creation to be used by Shayton against you.  Think of what Allah allowed to happen before and how his servants faired.  Example:

Musa (May Allah be pleased with him): Red Sea

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh): Quraysh

Believe in the Lord in which you serve.  This is an opportunity, not a moment to paralyze in fear.  So how do you do this???  This brings us to our last key to being aware of the tricks of Shayton in order to strive and be a great woman of Islam and that is:

3.) Ignorance: Learn your spiritual history!!!!  Learn this religion.  Be like that of Khadijah who was the first to accept Islam.  Read the signs.  Read in what times we are living in.  Learning this religion will assist in being able to READ the signs and allow you to be better equipped in how to deal with things as they arise versus running in fear of them.  Be like that of Aesha (RA) who learned so much with respect to Islam that she is known as one of if not the greatest scholar in Islam.  TAKE ACTION TODAY!!!  Seek what isn’t working in you today and take one thing at a time and with Allah’s help make the du’a that Allah allows you to see the tricks of Shayton and to fight against them.

I pray that you have found benefit in some of these key components in your journey and aspiration of finding your place in this Ummah and finding your contribution during these times so that In Shaa Allah you can stand before our Lord on the day of Judgment as one of the great women of Islam today!

Bridge the Gap: Sunnah Rather Than Later

October 4, 2016 by  
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Surah Al Hujurat Ayat 13

O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into Nations and Tribes, that ye may know each other (Not that ye may despise each other).  Verily, the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you.  And Allah has full knowledge and is well-acquainted (with all things).

Surah Al Baqarah Ayat 213

Mankind was one single nation, and Allah sent Messengers with glad tidings and warnings; and with them he sent the book in truth, to judge between people in matters wherein they differed; but the people of the book, after the clear signs came to them, did not differ among themselves, except through selfish contumacy.  Allah by his grace guided the believers to the truth, concerning that wherein they differed.  For Allah guides whom he will to a path that is straight.

In the environment we live in today with Islamophobia running rampant, it is so vital that we adhere to the ayats forementioned.  Sadly, the issues we see in the Dunya with respect to race relations are plaguing our Ummah as well.  We have brothers and sisters due to being of different nationalities and cultures going as far as not even giving the Salaams to one another…the bare minimum of the right we owe to one another.  Some have gone to the extent of no longer attending a masjid due to race, in some cases preventing a masjid from having a qualified Imam because he was of a different race to not even wanting to stand next to one another in Salat.  This HAS to stop!

Allah chose that brother/sister to be a Muslim, just as he chose you.  Do you dare take issue with what Allah has decreed?  Clearly, if Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala chose that person to be guided, there is something about that individual worth getting to know don’t you think?  Instead of looking at our differences as a barrior, if we claim to be Muslims then let’s start with the religion of which we subscribe…Islam!  Islam means submission.  If we are truly submissive to the will of Allah then we adhere to his words in the Qur’an and follow the Sunnah in its totality, not like a buffet where you pick and choose what you like.  When accepting Islam, that is a condition of our Shahada.

So in doing so, in following the Qur’an let us disect the ayats mentioned at the onset of this blog.  Allah created different nations and tribes so that we can learn about one another and from eachother.  That whatever differences you may have AFTER the clear signs, we would no longer differ amongst one another.  Here Allah is clearly showing there is NO room, no place for racism in Islam and that what should bring us together before anything else is our faith…our Iman!  Do we not remember the profound hadith which states, ” None of you have Iman until you love for your brother (or sister) what you love for yourself.  Our very Iman is connected to wanting good for our fellow brothers/sisters and loving them for the pleasure of Allah.  This very act as it is connected to the root of our faith distinguishes us as a Muslim or as a BELIEVER!

Someone may ask, why do I need to get to know someone of a different nationality/culture who happens to be Muslim?  “There is no great benefit, I’m good.”  Oh, how wrong you are!  So let us look at the tangible benefits in this life that can be derived from all parties by following the ayats mentioned.  We will be taking it from the perspective of those who come from other countries…Muslim countries and from Muslims of the U.S.

Muslim Countries: How do Muslims from the U.S. Benefit?

  1. For those who are coming from Muslim countries, we can learn about the lifestyle one lives in those countries.  For example, livelihood is surrrounded around prayer.  Stores close up, people walking to the Masjid in order to pray and children literally carrying their parents on their backs to assist them in being able to pray; honoring their rights.  Restrooms in the foremat of the days of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).  For many born here in the U.S. we can only imagine what that looks like.  So the preservation of Islam in a way that we are not accustomed to can be part of the narrative.  In doing so, it may inspire someone who casually thought about making Umrah/Hajj to seriously consider it due to conversations had amongst his/her brother or sister.  Learning other cultures, traditions and food expands the human experience for one another.

American Muslims: How do Muslims from other countries benefit?

  1. For those born in Muslim countries, covering, modesty, minimum interactions with the opposite sex are the norm.  When coming to the U.S. it may be a culture shock to some and what once was not an issue for one with respect to their deen, is now one.  Such as covering and the issue of having a boyfriend or girlfriend.  The American born Muslims are used to being a “stranger” to those around them and can assist in helping their fellow brother or sister navigate through that transition.  Introduce them to organizations and conferences that can further assist in meeting other Muslims while maintaining their deen.  This will allow them to do good deeds together; studying Islam, Dawah work, community initiatives.

How is this not a win, win situation for all parties involved and the Ummah at large?  Disarm Shayton with his use of media to define us, let us follow the Sunnah where as Aesha (RA) says, our beloved Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was the walking Qur’an.  In speaking of the Sunnah, let us reflect on the last lecture of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and let us keep in mind at the time of giving this Khutbah, he knew death was eminent.  Think for a minute, if you knew death was near, what would be your thoughts?  Who would you want to reach?  What message would you want to relay?  What would be most important to you?  Notice what was most important to our beloved Prophet (pbuh) in his last lecture.  I will begin by starting as he did in asking you to lend me your ear.


“O People, lend me an attentive ear, for I know not whether after this year, I shall ever be amongst you again. Therefore listen to what I am saying to you very carefully and TAKE THESE WORDS TO THOSE WHO COULD NOT BE PRESENT HERE TODAY.

Beware of Satan, for the safety of your religion
. He has lost all hope that he will ever be able to lead you astray in big things, so beware of following him in small things.
O People, just as you regard this month, this day, this city as Sacred, so regard the life and property of every Muslim as a sacred trust. Return the goods entrusted to you to their rightful owners. Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you. Remember that you will indeed meet your LORD, and that HE will indeed reckon your deeds. ALLAH has forbidden you to take usury (interest), therefore all interest obligation shall henceforth be waived. Your capital, however, is yours to keep. You will neither inflict nor suffer any inequity. Allah has Judged that there shall be no interest and that all the interest due to Abbas ibn ‘Abd’al Muttalib (Prophet’s uncle) shall henceforth be waived…

O People, it is true that you have certain rights with regard to your women, but they also have rights over you. Remember that you have taken them as your wives only under Allah’s trust and with His permission. If they abide by your right then to them belongs the right to be fed and clothed in kindness. Do treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers. And it is your right that they do not make friends with any one of whom you do not approve, as well as never to be unchaste.

O People, listen to me in earnest, worship ALLAH, say your five daily prayers (Salah), fast during the month of Ramadan, and give your wealth in Zakat. Perform Hajj if you can afford to.

All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety (taqwa) and good action. Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Nothing shall be legitimate to a Muslim which belongs to a fellow Muslim unless it was given freely and willingly. Do not, therefore, do injustice to yourselves.

Remember, one day you will appear before ALLAH and answer your deeds. So beware, do not stray from the path of righteousness after I am gone.


O People, NO PROPHET OR APOSTLE WILL COME AFTER ME AND NO NEW FAITH WILL BE BORN. Reason well, therefore, O People, and understand words which I convey to you. I leave behind me two things, the QURAN and my example, the SUNNAH and if you follow these you will never go astray.

All those who listen to me shall pass on my words to others and those to others again; and may the last ones understand my words better than those who listen to me directly. Be my witness, O ALLAH, that I have conveyed your message to your people”.

Will your actions show that his messaage reached its destination?  Will you be amongst those who are striving to be an answer to his du’a?  Will you be the change agent in your community to champion tolerance, true brotherhood/sisterhood…one Ummah?

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