|I lasted about two minutes before posting something weird.|
More humility on deck ...
I might complain about work sometimes, but overall I have a wonderful job at a place that makes me feel good about what I do for people in need. There are a lot of rewards but one is that I get a paycheck. This is a big deal. I was listening to NPR recently about how unpaid internships are like the new way to get free labor for work that should be classed as employment, unlike traditional internships which should be learning experiences. Like film crews and accountants for the entertainment business. People are so desperate for any kind of experience to put on their résumé and they can't find work so they gladly one, two or three internships in a row which perpetuates the problem. Also with so many nonprofits going under due to the financial crisis, I am very blessed to have a job in this field at all. Alhamdulillah. Allah praise is due to Allah.
What in the world am I talking about? Well today I took a paid walk (I was on my break) in the beautiful post-rain sunshine through a safe and developed neighborhood in one of the nicest states in one of the most secure and stable countries in the world to a real bank backed by a government that actually exists to cash my paycheck, which by the way, will pay for my food, housing, clothing, and other expenses. None of these things are possible for people in Mogadishu, Somalia—some of the people served by the organization that pays me to move words and pictures around on a computer screen all day and send e-mails. How can I complain about anything when I reflect on that?
Plus I took the scenic route to make the walk longer so it counts as my exercise!
Health Tip of The Day (Directed toward myself first): Get grateful for what you got. Your attitude will improve, your stress level will go down, you will sleep better at night, and everything will look slightly less scary in the morning.
If you need further evidence for the benefits of being grateful (and the command from Allah that we show our gratitude), check out this great lecture by Br. Nouman Ali Khan. He talks about Surah Ibrahim in which Allah instructs the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ on how to use the example of Musa in convincing his people to be more grateful. I was crying at about Minute 21:00.
I know this all sounds a little preachy and no one wants to hear that, but I sincerely hope that others will benefit from these reminders I am writing down mostly for myself. I have some friends going through various tests and trials right now and I myself have felt a little hopeless lately when I think about where I'm at in life: Divorced, without kids, living alone (ok Willy, you do count for something), and working somewhat below my education level (whatever that means).
But when I think about how good I actually have it I just can't believe it. So there you go. Gratitude waxes and wanes, but the important thing is that it never vanish. And if you can grit your teeth and find it under the clutter and trash of daily life, Allah will increase your provisions and blessings many times over. And All-Powerful is He to do that.