Alhamdulillah-MoniqueHassan

Gratefulness Impacts Happiness

Islamic PsychologyMental Self-Care

As November continues, we are in a month where we focus on gratitude and giving thanks to those around us.

A time of embracing family and being nostalgic. Gratitude is very much a spiritual benefit that enhances our mood, allows us to take account of our blessings as well as enables us to see hardships as lessons. This type of perspective encourages positivity and a greater quality of life. Simply put, gratefulness impacts happiness. Our perspective is our reality. A grateful perspective is one that helps us on our path of spiritual awakening and appreciation.

and, indeed, We granted this wisdom unto Luqman ,Be grateful unto God-for he who is grateful [unto Him] is but grateful for the good of his own self; whereas he who chooses to be ungrateful [ought to know that], verily, God is self-sufficient, ever to be praised

وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا لُقْمَانَ الْحِكْمَةَ أَنِ اشْكُرْ لِلَّهِ ۚ وَمَنْ يَشْكُرْ فَإِنَّمَا يَشْكُرُ لِنَفْسِهِ ۖ وَمَنْ كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَنِيٌّ حَمِيدٌ

Quran 31:12

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The Psychology of Islamic Modesty

Islamic PsychologyModesty

What is modesty and what does it mean to you?

This is a question I believe all believers need to ask themselves. Modesty is an element found within many religions, it is a characteristic aligning with piety and respect. That is not to say that all who demonstrate modesty are pious, unfortunately, many look the part yet they do not act it. Ultimately, the psychology of Islamic modesty and self-respect are important aspects of Islamic character.

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sujoodblackwhite-monique hassan

How to Embrace the Power of Prayer

Islamic Psychology

Prayers are a time of reflection and submission to our creator, to Allah (glorified and exalted). We let go of this world, even if only for a minute. In this submission we find calmness, we release our emotions and the power of prayer impacts us. Prayer in itself is a gift, a blessing, a powerful coping skill, it is therapeutic and most importantly; it is an act of worship.

“Indeed, I am Allah . There is no deity except Me, so worship Me and establish prayer for My remembrance” Quran 20:14

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work

7 Tips To Make Your Week More Productive

Mental Self-Care

Another work week is here, time for excessive amounts of caffeine and a jungle of sticky notes. We all love the feeling of a productive day, that sense of accomplishment when we really made the most out of our time.

A common mindset is that greater productivity means working harder and for longer stints of time. Although this works for some people, this can lead to burnout and a decrease in focus.

Work Smarter Not Harder. Time is Valuable.

Here are 7 practical tips to make this week more productive.

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women holding hands

Me Too

Sexuality

You may have noticed #metoo or “me too” on your friend’s social media status. Thousands of women have decided to step out in solidarity and showcase that they have been a victim of sexual assault or harassment.

Where did Me Too Start

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stressed man

How to Manage Stress

Mental Self-Care

Stress is essentially our body going into fight-or-flight mode. A rush of norepinephrine, adrenaline and cortisol prepares our bodies and minds for the situation being thrown at us. Some stress is good (such as the day of your big exam ) some stress is not so good (such as being fired from work). Regardless of the cause, it is beneficial to understand techniques to manage stress.

Identify and Manage Stress

First and foremost, let us understand the basics. Stress is your body responding to the demands being presented to it. Stress can cause us to be more productive and force us to focus. If my client list keeps growing and my weekly deliverables escalates, I might feel more stress due to the increasing workload.  A doctor may see a patient and realize they need immediate surgery, this type of stress pushes us to perform better.

Stress can also be related to life stressors that are very difficult to handle like divorce, moving to a new home or a loss of income. Stress can also come from internal stimuli instead of external. Jasmine might have low self-esteem and she doubts how well she performed at her interview. Despite the fact stress will not help Jasmine in this situation, she is worrying so much (anxiety) it is causing a stress reaction in her body.

Anything that puts a load on you can be considered stressful. External or Internal. 

woman managing stress

The issues usually arise when stress is constant. Chronic stress can lead to mental, emotional and physical issues. It is important to note that I mentioned it can impact you PHYSICALLY. Many people don’t realize the full impact of stress and a go-go-go lifestyle.

Let us look at a few symptoms to better understand how we can be impacted by stress. These lists are not fully inclusive, but it gives you an idea of what stress can do.

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Mental Health APPtention

Give Your Mental Health APPtention

Mental Self-Care

Most of have smart phones with a wide array of apps. We have apps for restaurants, banking, keeping  us on task for work, but what about an app for our emotional well being? It is time to give your mental health APPtention.

6 Beneficial Apps for Mental Health

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Arrogance in Muslims

Islamic Psychology

Arrogance is essentially a prideful attitude of superiority. The opposite of humility. Arrogance in Muslims is not only a negative personality trait, it is a dangerous path. Original sin stems from pride when we look at the story of Iblis (satan) refusing to bow to Adam (peace be upon him).

People are not born arrogant, this develops overtime. Success is wonderful, but it does elevate one’s risk for arrogance. In those moments of success and achievement, we must remember to give praise and thanks to Allah (most glorified, most high). This simple act of gratitude and worship keeps us grounded.

Some people act arrogant as a defense mechanism; look a little deeper and that person is actually insecure and they fear rejection. It takes a level of self-esteem and trust in order to allow ourselves to be vulnerable. An insecure person is putting up a metaphorical shield when they act arrogant.

Narcissistic personality disorder describes someone with an over-inflated sense of self-worth and importance. Their sense of entitlement is evident and they do not mind stepping on others to get what they want. Again, we may be seeing a highly arrogant individual on the surface, but underneath that hides levels of insecurity. This person NEEDS validation and praise so they demand it.

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Refugee Children Facing Trauma

Trauma

The impact of trauma on refugee children is sometimes overlooked due to a perception that they are too young to understand and bringing those topics up in a discussion may do more harm than good. We are seeing a lot of refugees and unfortunately, many of them have endured traumatic experiences that have impacted their children. Some children are highly resilient and seem to bounce back almost effortlessly, however, this can be an act sometimes in order to make their parents proud such as a young boy trying to prove his “manhood” and they are often not able to comprehend and articulate emotions as well as adults.

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Psychological Damage of Hurricanes

Trauma

As a resident of the southeast region of the United States, hurricanes are almost an annual event and some people  have hurricane parties. I am not making this up, some people legitimately have parties before a hurricane hits. That being said, they are destructive and can hurt the mind as much as they hurt a house.

The news stations are showing image after image of destroyed homes and swaying trees; the physical devastation Hurricane Irma brought to Puerto Rico has been displayed to the world.

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