Channel: Navaid Aziz
Sister mother will father. She's a psychologist who wears many different professional hats. She works as a mental health therapist with Alberta Health Services. She's a trainer with the crisis and trauma resource Institute. She provides professional development training on various topics around mental health and wellness. And she has her own private practice where she provides therapy to individuals and families. Model loves what she does, and she recognizes that it's a privilege to walk with people on their journey to wellness. Our next speaker, Chef innovator disease, doesn't really need any introduction. very beloved chef here in Calgary. He was raised in Montreal, Quebec,
or thank God we kind of stole him from the quad, and he completed an associate's degree in Arabic, Arabic language and literature, and bachelors in Islamic law at the Islamic School of Medina. Upon returning home to Canada, she can evade began teaching for another Institute. He has since transitioned to the Director of Public Relations, and 2012, Chef Naveed moved to Calgary to become the director of religious and social services for I see, which is the Islamic Information Society of Calgary, a position he currently holds. And in 2015, jack navaid became the first ever Muslim chaplain with the Calgary police services. So there are two wonderful speakers. And inshallah, like
I said, sister model will start us off and chief maybe it will take over right after that.
Okay, somebody come, everyone.
I'm very happy to be here with you today. Thank you so much Eman. shahana vade for inviting me.
It's an honor to be here, I'm looking forward to sharing some information with everyone around anxiety and then inshallah being able to answer whatever questions are within my capacity to respond to. So inshallah for today's my section of today's presentation, I'm going to talk a little bit about what anxiety is. So define it a little bit, explain what I mean, or what we generally mean, when you hear the term anxiety from a mental health standpoint. I'll also talk a little bit about stress, because it's a little bit different from anxiety and what that can look like. We'll talk about the signs and symptoms of what anxiety entails, what you can look for, and maybe question if
you're experiencing some of those Could this be anxiety, and then I'll shift gears into talking about specific strategies that might be helpful in managing anxiety. Before I jump all the way in, I just want to preface that, of course, there's so much more information out there about anxiety. This is just sort of an introduction, condensed version, given our limited time. But again, as I mentioned in other my contact information will be at the end. So if people have more questions, or are looking for resources, I'd be happy to suggest them in general. Okay.
So jumping right in what is anxiety so when talking about anxiety, there's a lot of
different things that I think people mean, anxiety is a word that's often really commonly used in our language. A lot of us use the word anxiety in our everyday language when we're talking about how we're feeling, but it can mean different things. So for psychologically speaking, or from a mental health standpoint, when we're talking about anxiety, we're talking about a signaling concern. And what I mean by that is, anxiety often happens when our brain is giving us a signal of some kind, that there's something that maybe is threatening, or maybe something that we should be concerned about. And the nature of that threat may shift. And so it kind of raises our internal alarms. And
that's based on some of those internal and external cues. So what do I mean by that, I mean, sort of when you think about the five senses that we have. So for instance, if I see something if I'm out hiking in the mountains, and I see a bear, the those senses, my eyes will get the message to my brain that Well, there's a bear be concerned, or in my case, it's a spider doesn't have to be big, it could be anything, but I see a spider all of my body goes into complete panic and anxiety, right? So that's one way of it, you can hear something if you are home alone, and all of a sudden you hear something in your home, that is not something you should be hearing that could be alarming. Again,
that's going to give a message to your brain that says, oh, something's something's not right, there might be something I need to be concerned about. And your body's going to kick into gear in terms of some of those physiological reactions. Okay? And so that brain is going to pick up from some of those external cues and also internal cues. So sometimes we may not necessarily know what we're anxious about. There may not be a bear or a spider or the smell of smoke or the sound of someone in your home but sometimes we have that feeling and I'm sure some of you can relate where your stomach feels uneasy. You have that butterflies in your stomach or you feel really nauseous like if you ate
something or anything that you might want to throw up. headaches or body aches, some sometimes when your body just doesn't feel right, it could also be cues, internal cues that you're
Brain is recognizing that might be anxiety related.
What happens when we're anxious sometimes is we get into one of those fights like freeze responses. And so what do we mean by that for those who may not be feeling and for those of you who may be familiar, this might just be a refresher. But I know for many people, this may be sort of new information. So bear with me, while I just explain a little bit more, when we talk about fight, or flight or freeze, those are the kind of instinctive responses that come when our brain recognizes some kind of threat. So to go back to that bear example,
you're hiking in the woods and you see a bear and the sympathetic nervous system, I'm not going to go too much into biology, I promise. But that's the nervous system that we have that kicks into gear that tells us that we might have to do something. And so adrenaline goes of kind of flooding through our body, our body stops paying attention to some of the less necessary functions and sort of sends all of the energy in the blood to our, our extremities, or our hands or feet. That part of our brain in the front, the prefrontal cortex, where we're doing a lot of our thinking, kind of shuts down, and it's just about survival. And so our instincts at that moment are to fight so to get aggressive
to fight verbally to fight physically, or flight, which means get out of there, as quickly as possible, remove yourself from that situation. There's also the freeze response that happens sometimes, which is where we're so it's kind of a deer in the headlights, where you get so scared or anxious that you're almost a little bit paralyzed, where you can't quite fight something or flee, you just sort of are frozen in place. Once the anxiety or the thing that's causing the anxiety goes away, or is no longer a threat, the parasympathetic nervous system kicks in. So that's the part of our body that gets us to relax, to rest, to recuperate from what just happened, and to kind of get
back into some kind of balance. Okay, so we're not supposed to ideally, we're not meant to stay in that constant state of alarm, we're supposed to sort of react, it's a it's a survival mechanism. It's something that as humans has, has benefited us, it is good to feel anxious when or to be alarmed when you see the bear coming at you or think that someone's broken into your home or feel like someone's gonna, there are some situations where anxiety is a very appropriate response. Right? It's it's a healthy response. It's a necessary response.
So before we continue, just a couple of quick things in terms of anxiety, like I said, it's a word that we sometimes use. And I'll go into the difference between sort of what regular anxiety looks like and maybe what more clinical or concerning anxiety can look like.
But it's again, I wanted to just address like I said earlier, we use it really commonly this idea that we talk about anxiety, we mentioned those words, but it will mean different things to different people. Sometimes people just have a personality where they're more anxious about things. anxiety can have a genetic component. So if you have parents, grandparents who have been anxious or are anxious people, it will affect your presentation of anxiety, right? It's a combination of nature and nurture, biology and environment. And so sometimes you'll notice that you have anxiety traits that might be similar to the anxiety traits that maybe you've run in your family. So it's not just
biological, it's not just environmental, but it's often a combination of both. Okay.
And please, as I'm talking, take notes of the questions that you might have typed them up, or send them to Allah, and inshallah, we'll be able to address those questions later. And I'm going to be throwing a lot of information out at you.
Stress, I want to talk about really quickly, just to distinguish stress is one of those words that I think gets a bad rap, I think we all think stress is a bad thing that we should totally avoid all of the time. But stress can actually be quite positive. There are certain things that causes stress, but that stress is good, because it can be overcome at it encourages us to sort of push through and build resilience. So positive stress, normal things that we go through, it's essential, it's necessary for our development. But the key word here is that it's transient. And what I mean by that is that it doesn't stick around. So those are things like when you have to give a speech, and maybe
you're nervous. So my positive stress is a little bit when I start presentations like this, I'm a little bit nervous in the beginning. Because I you know, I want to make a good impression. I want to be professional, I want it to be successful. So I experienced a little bit of that, but halfway through the presentation, or by the end of it, I'm good, right? It hasn't kind of continued with me. And so it can be overcome the first day of school for kids, when you have to go to work or do something that's new or different. Those are all sort of positive stressors. Were there things that push you a little bit challenge you you have an exam coming and so you're going to be challenged to
study for it because you want to do well. Okay? tolerable stress is a little bit different. It's it's sort of the stress that is more challenging circumstances when you're going through grief and loss if someone dies, if your family's going through a divorce or a separation, even the COVID which we're going through right now, which I'll talk a little bit more about in a minute.
That's tolerable because it's it's something that again, maybe long term, but hopefully it is buffered by healthy relationships. And so for children, that's healthy relationships with their parents, for the rest of us as adults, that's healthy relationships with loved ones, siblings, parents, friends, whoever it is, okay? spouses. And then there's toxic stress. And that's sort of the stress that we think of when we think of really bad stress. That sort of long term consistent stress, that's when we're in abusive relationships. When children experience things like child abuse, things that are consistent, and that where there aren't healthy relationships to help people
navigate those things. And in children, it can be really problematic because it can interrupt their brain development. So again, stress is a little bit different than the anxiety, piece, anxiety, think about a signaling as alarm stress is sort of the response that we have sometimes to things that are happening in our life. Okay.
In terms of stress, and COVID, specifically, I wanted to take some time to address that, because I know this is a situation that we're all currently in. And we're all sort of trying to figure out how to navigate because it's these are things that we haven't necessarily experienced before. So when we're talking about stress,
in COVID times, first of all, I mentioned earlier, when we're talking about anxiety, we're not meant to stay in that consistent state of anxiety and alarm all of the time. But with COVID, we are in a state of alarm for long periods of time, because we don't know what's happening, because it's this constant evolving situation, and we don't have a lot of control over it. And so our anxiety is heightened, and it's continuous, it's consistent. For those of us who are here back in 2013, when we had the floods in Calgary, it would have been a similar experience for a period of a couple of months, it was sort of continued level of alarm for a lot of people.
For COVID, some of the things that are happening that are causing stress is we've got increased time at home. And for some of us, that's a beautiful thing. But for other people, that's more time with family, for better or for worse. And while many of us love our families being at home all of the time in each other's faces, there's increased conflict, there's increased triggers, were just sort of irritated or aggravated a lot of the time. So it's something that can be a problem. There's also again, these are things that I'm sure people are recognizing, but financial stress for a lot of people that are either in ability to work or limited work, those who own businesses who aren't able
to sustain them, right? How am I gonna support my family, the social isolation, we're social people, we're social beings, we exist in relationship and connection with other people. And so not being able to connect in the same way, visit our family or friends is really challenging for people. And then just the constant uncertainty, like I mentioned earlier, we're not able to continuously figure out what is happening, things change daily, right, we're all kind of watching the news and trying to figure out what we'll be able to do and what we won't be able to do.
And finally, COVID itself as the pandemic like the illness, right people worrying about illness, people having to experience death, people not being able to go through the ritual. So for people who have experienced death during this time, not being able to have the same rites and rituals, generic prayers, having people come to your home, to give their condolences or the masjid or whatever it is, right, there's a lot of change and concern about that piece as well. So that's an added element. So when we're talking about
the, I think, my slides and apologize, I forgot to switch my slides. So I'm going to switch to talk about this one first. And then I'll go back to the symptoms, there is a distinction that I want to make, like I talked about earlier between normal anxiety and concerning anxiety. So we talked about kind of the typical situations, tests, presentations, meetings, speeches, first day of school, all of those things, normal anxiety, anybody in that situation may be experiencing anxiety, it's transient. So it'll come and it'll go, it's not going to stick around for long periods of time. But the key piece here is that we're able to adapt, our body doesn't stay in that level of alarm all of
the time, we kind of figure it out, and we're able to adjust and keep going.
Where we need to be concerned is when the anxiety doesn't go away, when it doesn't resolve where it's a consistent state of being. And the biggest piece here, it's the kind of last point I've listed, but when your functioning is disrupted. So what does that mean? It means that you're not yourself, you are not acting or behaving in the ways that you typically would be acting or behaving. I'll get up I'll get into the specific symptoms in a second. But
the disruption and functioning is a big marker. So whether you're thinking about yourself, whether you're thinking about a loved
one, what are you thinking about your children, just sort of thinking how are they typically and how are they now and is what they're presenting with now look
different than how they typically if it's consistent, so it's not just a day, a bad day, a bad week, even but now it's been a month and it's been consistent and things are changing.
And so now what do I do? Right? That's when we need to be a little bit concerned, I don't want us to get hung up on labels about things like diagnoses,
or you know, clinical anxiety or generalized anxiety or any of those words, they are important than they can be helpful. But for your purposes on a regular basis, it's sort of trying to figure out, am I dealing with things differently than I typically would? Am I not able to get to work? Am I not able to get to school, am I on my kind of withdrawing from my relationships, all of those things, that gives you a sense of if you're sort of functioning differently or not. Okay.
And so back to our symptoms.
So when we're talking about what anxiety can look like, it'll be different for a lot of people to sort of, if you think about it in these categories of physical symptoms, emotional symptoms, cognitive meaning to do with our brain, and our thinking, and behavioral. So from a physical standpoint, sleep, appetite, all of these things will be impacted. And it can go in either direction, right. So it can be, for instance, that you're sleeping too much, you're someone who's so anxious, and so you go to sleep, and you end up sort of on the extreme of sleeping too much. But it can also go the other way, where you're not sleeping enough, you can't sleep because you're thinking
all of the time your brain won't shut down, your mind is racing. And so your sleep is impacted. You know, you go to sleep worrying about work, you wake up worrying about work, so you're sleeping, but you're not restful. You wake up tired and exhausted, even though we may have gotten the right number of hours of sleep. appetite is the same, you know, eating too much not eating enough, you know, and it's and the reason it's sort of broad is because people react differently from there from a physiological standpoint, but either of those extremes can be concerning, lack of energy, lack of motivation, fatigue, you know, and all of these things will be different for people. Emotionally
speaking, your mood has shifted your you know, you're not yourself, things are irritating you a lot more you're sort of functioning at that worried level all the time, the littlest things are worrying you you're you're thinking about a lot of different things. And just feeling constantly in that state of alarm. The low mood comes in, and I use the word low mood, because I don't want to say depression, because that's a whole different situation. But your mood is different, its impacted, you find yourself maybe feeling a little bit more sad, a little bit, just lower law, however you want to look at it, you can be really teary. I know for myself, for example, just to give an
example, I know that I'm experiencing anxiety, even though I may not necessarily be able to pinpoint exactly what's causing my anxiety. It's always a red flag for me, when I feel like I can cry at the drop of a hat. My tears are like right here, someone can look at me funny. And I'll be in tears. Someone can make something that is, you know, say something that's a joke or intensity funny. But I'm anxious. And I may not have tuned into it. And all of a sudden, I'm crying over something that seems so silly. But to me, that is always an indicator, right? When my tears are really at the surface. So thinking about it for yourself? How do you know when you're off balance when your
emotional symptoms or emotional presentation might be a little bit different?
cognitively, what does anxiety look like? anxieties and illness. When we're talking about clinical anxiety, it's it's sort of a condition where people are constantly thinking either about the past or the future, they're really having a hard time staying in the present.
So when i when i when i say thinking about the past, cognitively, we're thinking in a lot of Oh, I should have done that, Oh, I can't believe I did this, I forgot to do this and constantly kind of thinking about things that should have been different or could have been different in the past. Or alternatively to the future that what if the the fortune telling if you will write trying to read people's mind, those are also some of those thinking errors, some people might have heard of them in using terms like cognitive distortions. And if you were to look that up online, you know, I wish I had the time to go into all of them. But those are some we call them thinking errors or mistakes
where you get into habits of thinking about things in specific ways. So all or nothing thinking where things are black or white, either a success or a failure. There's no in between overgeneralizing where someone might say, you know, one small thing, you know, you're doing a presentation and someone you know, doesn't doesn't smile, or doesn't give you a thumbs up at the end of it. And all of a sudden, you're like, Oh my gosh, I was a failure. They hated me. Right? we generalize one small thing to everything. mind reading, like I said, you sort of look at people and their reactions and assume you know what they're thinking and usually the negative, you know, oh my
gosh, they hate me. They're not you know, they're not maintaining eye contact, they looked at me funny. Someone has a bad day and you know, doesn't really doesn't return your snaps for instance, and all of a sudden you're like, Whoa, they're they're ignoring me, I accept them. So those are some of the ways those thinking errors manifests. And when we have anxiety that is highlighted, it sort of happens more and more those thinking, the negative thinking
and then behaviourally again.
And some of these things may be on extremes. But there's that sense of isolation. So we pull away from our loved ones, we want to maybe not connect with them as much we, we have a sense of not wanting to engage, you know, being called anti social or how come you don't come out anymore or whatnot. For those who are familiar with the terms, introverted extrovert, not to go off on a tangent, but introverts are people who generally be charged more. By having alone time by not engaging with people as much an extroverts tend to get energy and recharge more from being around people. introverts with anxiety have a harder time because with some research shows this because
naturally, their inclination is to pull back. And so when they're anxious, and they want to pull back even more people, people may not notice or recognize that they're struggling because they're naturally seem to be people who maybe enjoy their alone time, a little bit of escapism, you know, the whole Netflix in Shell or reading books, or watching movies or video games for those who play video games, right? That idea that we can't handle life as it is because it's too anxiety provoking, we get overwhelmed. And so we want to escape into things that that don't take the kind of take your mind off of things that don't take that same mental energy. Procrastination is one of those things.
I didn't put it on there. But I am the queen of procrastination when I'm anxious. I mean, let's be honest, I procrastinate anyway. But it's even worse when I'm anxious. Because I'm so overwhelmed. And I have so much anxiety that the thought of doing the things that I'm supposed to do seems so overwhelming, and so I don't do it.
Concentration is impacted, right, your ability to focus and do the things that you're supposed to do work or school or listening to loved ones, or whatever it is parenting, you just feel really distracted and unable to kind of pay attention. Okay, so those are some of the signs and symptoms of people who are struggling with anxiety. So now that we've talked about that, what are you meant to do about it? So, again, I'm going to get to some of those strategies, definitely, it's going to talk about self care, which is going to incorporate some of those, there are some things that I do not go into into details, because insha Allah, he'll be able to, to revisit some as well. And if we don't
go into all of them, then again, you can ask questions about after
we've already talked about. So physically, we talked about sort of some of the physical symptoms that manifest. But in terms of how you can combat anxiety, from a physical perspective, it's so important to move I know, you've probably heard this a million times. And this isn't new information to a lot of us, but it can be really hard to, to force ourselves to do prioritize movement. And it doesn't need to be intense, you don't need to be doing CrossFit or you know, running five kilometers every day or anything like that. Any movement, whether that's walking, whether that's actual exercise, whether that's just doing five or 10 minutes of a stretch routine every day before after,
you know, before you go to sleep after you wake up. Even something as simple you know, if you don't, if you don't have equipment, if you don't feel like you know what you're doing, if you have stairs in your home, go up and down the stairs every once in a while just to sort of get your body moving, right, get the blood flowing. Research has shown us over and over again that that physical movement can be so helpful for people's mood for people's mental health.
You know, you can even set an alarm on your phone, I know those of us are, you know, a lot of us are really attached to our phones that are an alarm that goes off a couple of times, you know, a day or you know, I had a colleague who told me that she would set an alarm for every hour and when she had a desk job. And so every hour, the phone would go off. And it would just be a little reminder. And she'd get up she'd like, just do some stretches, you know, get her hand over her head. Just move Get up, walk around her desk, come back and sit down, it took like 30 seconds. But she would do it every hour, take some deep breaths and then keep moving, keep keep working right. So it doesn't have to be
intense. But get some level of movement going.
Watch what you eat. And again, this is
this is a tricky one for a lot of us, especially again, with COVID, we're not going out as often we're stuck at home a lot. A lot of us are eating out of boredom. And we're when we're bored, and we want snacks, we're not going to the carrots and the celery, we're going to the chips and we're going to the ice cream and the bread and the carbs and all of the things that maybe aren't good for us. And so again, with stress, you don't need to be re revamping your entire diet and be realistic, but be conscious of what you're eating. Right? What are the choices that you're eating, making sure you're eating regularly, as opposed to not eating at all. hydrate, make sure you're drinking lots
and lots of water. If you know that you're anxiety prone, and I know some people may not like this, but watch your caffeine, you know, maybe minimize your coffee or your tea drinking because those are things that can make anxiety worse. Right? So keep in mind that that eating thing and when we're stressed. Like I said, the choices that we make with food are not often healthy. So keep that in the back of your mind. am I eating because I'm hungry or am I eating
Because I'm bored, am I making good food choices in terms of the things that I am putting into my body? am I eating regularly? Or, you know, am I eating late at night or not eating breakfast until two o'clock in the afternoon? You know, what are my eating habits? And can I fix those
healthy sleep hygiene is really, really important sleep is when we're meant to be rejuvenated, it's when we're meant to sort of get our body back into some state of downtime. And so making sure we've got good sleep hygiene. So what do I mean by that, making sure you have some kind of routine before going to sleep that does not involve screens. So you know, those of us who are looking at our phones, and I say this and fully recognize that I don't want to be a hypocrite because I know that I do this myself, it can be really challenging. But recognizing that having a screen in your face until right before you go to sleep is not good for you. It doesn't give your brain the messaging
that it's time to shut down that it's time to go to sleep. And so even getting to sleep can be really challenging when you have screentime right there,
put a routine around bedtime will really it's amazing as humans, how much our senses sort of cue us. And so put together a ritual routine around sensors, you know, have certain smells, if you're into incense, or essential oils, or whatever the case is, things that are calming like lavender or or anything like anything that has a scent that maybe gives you a sense of sleep for those who have you know, are comfortable doing things like candle, mild tea, right? Having having just things that give your body the cue that okay, it is time for me to go to bed. Right? For those who like showers or baths before you go to bed, having a warm wants to help your body get into a state of relaxation.
And having that routine and consistency is so important. It's so easy to lose that when we are home all of the time. And when we have a hard time sticking to those routines. So finding a way to be consistent as much as possible is really helpful. Okay,
cognitively speaking. So again, that's the mental piece that we're talking about really important to try to stay in the present, like I talked about earlier, anxiety often gets us stuck mentally and thinking about the past or thinking about the future. And so how can we combat that we do our best to stay in the present moment. And so what I mean by that is having a sense of what can I control? What can I not control? Thinking about the past in some senses are things that we have no, no more control over the future? For sure we, in some senses, we might have more control over it, but definitely not the past. once something is done, it's gone. So identifying what are the things that
I can or what are the things that I cannot control? I don't know how many people are familiar with the Serenity Prayer.
I think it comes out of the Christian tradition. But it says God grant me the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Right? So really important to think about something like that. And I think I maybe should have if Kim can correct me, I think there's a similar sense in Islam of recognizing what we have control over and recognizing when we need to let go and let God trust in Allah that He will help us. So recognizing that piece, what do I have control over? And what do I not have control over the things that I'm thinking about? Are those things that I can do anything about? Can I change
this? And if I can great, what do I need to do to change it? If I have anxiety? Because I've got an exam coming up? Okay, great. What do I need to do to affect that? Okay, maybe set up a study schedule, maybe get some friends to help help quiz me about certain things, whatever the case is, I have this big work meeting. Okay, what can I control about that? What do I need to do to prepare for it? But if it's something that I cannot control, like, even you know, when we talk about COVID? You know, it can be really difficult, we can't control whether or not we're going to be allowed to do certain things. Because those aren't decisions that we are we are making, for instance, so if I
cannot control it, what can I control? What do I have the ability to change or not change? Okay?
Reality Check thinking errors. Now, what I mean by that is when you get to that place, like I talked about that black and white thinking that will generalization the ways that maybe you get stuck in negative thinking habits, an analogy that I like to use, sometimes our brain has a lot of what we call neural pathways, a lot of ways that it's sort of out of habit, it defaults to, and for a lot of us, that's negative thinking. And so what I mean by that, again, if I if I want to use a hiking analogy, when you're going for a walk or on a trail somewhere, you sort of go with a path that's already been created. So that's what you go down. If one day you sort of see that, okay, maybe I
want to go explore what's down here, that path may not have been created. So you're kind of pushing through branches and bush and trying to create a path for yourself. And the more you go down that path tomorrow, you go down and again, the next day you go down and again, you're going to have it's going to be easier, it's going to be less hard because you've already cleared it, and the more you go down that new path
path will become more grown more overgrown, and it'll look less like a path, our brain works the same way. And so it can sometimes feel like hard work to shift that negative thinking to more positive thinking more realistic thinking. But once you do that, your brain will naturally want to go there, it will naturally default to thinking in that way. But for now, if your habit is sort of the more negative catastrophizing type thinking, thinking, everything is a big deal, it's going to continue doing that way until you're able to train your brain in a way to shift thinking. And I want to acknowledge I'm seeing it, and I recognize and for a lot of people that can be hard, it can be
years of habit building in that negative thinking that you have to change. And so what happens sometimes is people who are experiencing this, try it for a day or two and say it's not working. This is something that requires effort, consistent effort, and it can be challenging. Like I said, I don't want to I don't want to pretend that it's not difficult, but it's one of those things that's really important to kind of be consistent and stick with.
Finally, sorry, I didn't finish with the reality checking, have conversation with yourself, get a piece of paper and sort of do that evidence checking, you know, what else could be causing me anxiety? If I lined up four or five other people that I know? Would they also be anxious about this? What else would people think about the same situation? What else could it be? Could I be feeling something different? Because something else be causing me this? Is there a different explanation for this? So if I'm thinking, Oh, my goodness, this person looked at me funny, and they hate me. And, you know, or my instructor hates me, and I'm going to fail this exam, or my boss is going to fire
me, what else could be an explanation? Okay, maybe they had a bad day, maybe they're stressed out about something else. Maybe they're upset that that they're not going to fire me, right. So thinking of alternate ways, and then coming up with a positive or realistic statement that you can say in its place. So identifying and correcting that negative self talk. So what am i mean by that? If we sort of get into that place of thinking, Oh, my gosh, I'm so stupid. I'm so dumb. What's wrong with me? I can't believe I did that I'm gonna fail. All of those negative things impact us. And so what are some of the things I can say in place of that coming up with some of those positive statements, if
you need to take it as far as having like stickies on your mirror in the bathroom or on your wall or reminders of I am a capable person, I will do my best I, you know, whatever kind of statement that you need to come up with, to put perspective bear to kind of shift that thinking, okay.
In terms of our emotions, emotions are one of those things that are really hard to just sort of say, Oh, I'm going to stop feeling sad, I'm going to stop feeling angry, it's really hard to just kind of shift the emotion without shifting some of the thinking and the behavior. But some of the things that you can do with emotions that are really important is to normalize and validate. So what do I mean by that?
Sometimes we're really hard on ourselves, we think there's something wrong with us, we're weak, because we're feeling this way. And it's really important to recognize, especially with the context in where we're living in what we're experiencing. Now, with COVID, this is normal, a lot of us are functioning, like I said, at that constant state of alarm. So normalize that for yourself, name it, name, that I'm feeling anxious, and it's normal to feel some level of anxiety, but I'll be okay. And express that emotion. Right? What How do you get how you express it, that's really up to you. There are so many different ways, if you're someone who's creative, you know, write about it, create art
about it. If you're someone who's more about talking, you know, speak to loved ones about it, if you have someone who you trust that you can sort of get to kind of get some of those emotions out. How can you express those half tears? I know, this is a big thing. And a lot of people think crying is a bad thing. I'm a big advocate of crying, have your tears, really to sort of sit in that sadness, if you're experiencing and have tears about it, get it out, because trying to bottle it in or pretend that it's not happening is not good for us? So if you need to express those emotions, how can you get it out? If you're someone who enjoys writing journal about them? Right? put that out there,
identify what that emotion is and express it right, validate that you are experiencing something.
Connection, connect, connect, and I could not say this enough, I said it three times on the slide. And I can say it more I would. We're social beings. Like I said earlier, it's so important to connect to people who nurture us who ground us. How can we do that? You know, and it's hard, like I said, with the isolation and not being allowed to connect with people in the same way. Find ways to call people to FaceTime thank goodness for technology that allows us to connect with people in multiple ways. So how can we do that? Find ways to do that in a way that is meaningful for you, and engage in mindfulness practice. What I mean by that is, again, when we talked earlier about the
importance of being in the present, really important to find ways of doing that. And mindfulness practice is one of those ways. You know, that can be meditation. And meditation can be really difficult for some people. So you know, don't expect that you're going to sit and be able to do a meditation for 15
After 20 minutes right away, if you've never done that, start with one or two minutes at a time, there are so many apps out there, including things like headspace, or calm, many, many other apps that you can go in there, they have what I call, or what they called guided meditations. So someone is talking you through sort of what to think about how to regulate your breathing, just to get you used to kind of feeling like you have some control over your thoughts. And that you can therefore kind of decide what direction you want to go in and helping you stay in the present. Prayer, so important for those of us who have a consistent prayer, practice, you know, engaging in that and
trying in the moment to be present. While we're praying. That's really good practice for us. I know a lot of us, including myself struggle with that. We're trying to have that intention of doing that and trying to be in the present moment. Things like liquor or a supplication remembrance, or whether you're doing it with a beads or just sort of with your fingers are just, those are ways that are natural ways for us to settle into the moment to try to be as present as possible in what we're doing. So trying really hard. And it's hard, because that's something if you're used to doing it all the time can become in some senses mindless, where your brain can go off somewhere else where you're
saying your car, but how can you do that? How can you get yourself grounded, create a ritual around it, right, create space, so you're not doing it while you're rushing off or driving. You know, give yourself five minutes at some point during your day, go into a space, you know, that is quiet that you're less likely to have interruptions and an engage in a little bit of fun. And I'm sure Jeff, maybe we'll talk a little bit more about some of those things, a couple other ways to engage in mindful practice things that maybe we don't even think about mindful eating and mindful walking. So how many of us when we're sitting at our table are just sort of scarfing down our food, we're not
leaving paying attention to what we're eating. So we're consuming how it tastes, what are those textures in our mouth, right. And so giving yourself a challenge, and this, this may be really difficult. But giving yourself a challenge, I did a retreat once where the first 15 minutes of every meal were in complete silence, no one was allowed to talk. And so in that moment, the idea was to focus and be really present and mindful about what you're eating. And so focusing on the textures, being thankful, you know, the taste of the food in your mouth, eating slowly, making sure that you're really chewing your food, right ways to be present in the moment. Walking was the other
example I gave, if you're going to go out for a walk really using your senses to think what am I seeing, what am I hearing, what does the air feel like on my skin, it just really being present in the moment as opposed to just kind of marching off on your walk. So those are just some examples of ways that you can engage in some kind of mindfulness practice with the idea that again, you're going to try to focus on the present.
Okay, I have got a couple more slides, and then I'm going to turn it over to our shift Nurse Aide. And again, he will be talking about some of these things, so I'm not going to spend a huge amount of time on them. But when we're talking about anxiety, part of the other things that we can be doing, generally speaking, proactively minimize exposure to news and media. I know that's something that sometimes, you know, part of our anxieties wanting to get as much information or whatnot. But unfortunately, just given the state of the world that we're in, right now, a lot of that is negative, a lot of that is alarming, and stress inducing. So minimize your exposure to it if you
need to, you know, once a day, you know, ideally not close to that time, if you have to. But otherwise, try to minimize your exposure and find other ways to engage your energy, positive, enjoyable experiences to help balance the stress. So you know, I always encourage people make a list of 10 1520 things that give you pleasure or joy, even if it's just having a cup of tea, even if it's just, you know, facetiming with a, with a loved one, whatever it is, you know, make a list of those and commit to doing at least one of those every day, you know, engaging in gratitude practice, it's part of our faith to be in a state of gratitude, and choker. But it helps you know, from again, you
know, if you want to look at it from another perspective, it also helps to train your brain to see good to see positive. That's not to say that we don't acknowledge the negative in the stress that's happening, but it's a way of finding some balance. So you're not just sitting in the in the stress and in the negativity, but you're recognizing that in all things, there is some level of balance. So how can you bring more of those things in?
recognizing that futility is adaptive? What am I What do I mean by that? futility is that feeling that we get when we recognize that we are faced with something that we cannot change. And so oftentimes what causes us anxiety is the constant pushing against something that we have no control over and can't change. But recognizing that when we sit in that futility, get to a place of sort of submission, if you will, to a lot to to what's going on in our world and recognize, I can't change anything. I am not in control of this and having your sadness or your tears about that. It's normal.
And it's actually quite healthy. It's adaptive, because it's what teaches us that you know what, we are strong. And we can get through this, I experienced this and I'm okay. And so sometimes having our tears, you know, if you think about it from a child's perspective, children can be really good at this, you know, where they have their tears, they want a cookie, you say, No, they can't have a cookie. And they have tears in a tantrum, and then they get up and they move on. Right? They, they, they've couldn't recognize that. But as adults, we've lost touch with that a little bit.
Specifically for children, for those of you who are parents and want to foster some of that resilience similarly, especially when it comes to stress inducing things like COVID, or the political situations that are happening around the world, or whatever it is, making sure that if kids are around your sharing age appropriate information, that they're not exposed to things that their brains can't make sense of really important. also really important to model the patient's the tolerance that we're expecting of our children. Unfortunately, for a lot of us as adults, we have expectations of children to regulate themselves. And what I mean by that is to manage their
emotions, when we ourselves can do that, you know, the irony being when you have and this is, I promise you, I'm not saying any of this in judgment, because I recognize that we're all doing the best that we can. But just to give people perspective, especially for those for parenting, if you find yourself yelling at your child for being upset, or mad or whatever, recognize that if you're in a place where you're yelling, and perhaps you're not in control, why is it fair to have an expectation of your child to have that level of control that we ourselves sometimes struggle with? Right, so recognizing that there are oftentimes where we have good intentions, but our children are
also struggling and so giving them the same level of grace that we would hope for in ourselves.
Okay, last thing I'm going to talk about, and then I will shift over to shift navaid. I just wanted to really briefly address those of us who are parents or caregivers, because that's an added level of stress. And it can be really challenging when you're caring for other people, and therefore not prioritizing yourself really important to be patient with yourself to offer yourself grace and kindness and self compassion, you are only going to be able to help people when you're able to take a chance and take care of yourself. staying away from comparisons from social media where you see other parents may be handling things differently, or, you know, posting pictures of their kids and
their baking and all of the things that they're doing. It's okay, if you're not there at all, people are coping differently. And especially when it comes to things like social media, what people put out there is not often reality, you know, we only put out kind of the the things that we're the most proud of we don't often put put out there the things that we're struggling with. So have realistic expectations of yourself, of what it is that you want to accomplish, and, and finding times for yourself to connect with those you find supportive, other parents, your own parents, your spouse, or your partner if you have one. But whoever is that support network, finding time to connect with them
to maybe just be able to share some of that burden that you may be experiencing. And I know this is so hard, because I even struggle with typing up finding time for yourself, because for some parents that is so difficult or so impossible, but really helpful to find ways even if it you know, I had a client who talked about even when she went grocery shopping during COVID. You know, earlier in the lockdown back in the spring of last year, she would go grocery shopping by herself because she wasn't bringing her kids everywhere. And that was part of her self care, just finding that alone time to just be in the car. Even that, you know, 15 minute drive to the grocery store the process of
grocery shopping and comeback, shifting your intention. Right. So you're not just rushing through that, but maybe you're recognizing what is my time for myself, even if it's the 15 minutes before I go to bed and how can I make that meaningful time.
I spoke really fast, but I rushed through a lot of information but I'm really looking forward to hearing people's comments and questions. I hope this was of benefit to everybody. And so I will leave it at that and like I said I'd be happy to answer questions in a little bit. But alternative radiation
does that Okay, thank you so much, much appreciated. Okay, let's see if I can share my screen now. This
there we go. Hopefully this works.
There we go. This is allowed from another theme and hamdulillahi Rabbil alameen wa sallahu wa Sallim wa barik ala nabina Muhammad. While early he was a big man and my bad idea about this is just so that Monica Welcome to LA he will not occur to his market and to everyone for tuning in tonight for this pertinent, important and relevant topic on how to deal with anxiety and manage it and also practice self care. In these times. I'll jump straight into it in sha Allah.
As I was preparing, I came across this amazing quote from even Hassan Brahim Allahu Tada. He said, I searched for a common goal amongst humankind, to which all would agree to strive for with excellence. I have not found anything other than the vanquishing of anxiety how
And it shows a very important perspective that even if it hasn't broken the law is an annual Lucien scholar from Spain from the fifth century. And this is what he came across right away that as human beings, we have this passion, this desire, this motivation inside of us to get rid of our anxiety. Now, often when we think about dealing with anxiety will generally just focus on the psychological perspective or the different perspectives that deal directly with our psychology. But it's also important as Muslims as believers, that we tie in our faith to it as well. And that's what I wanted to focus on over here.
If I can just switch the slide, there we go.
Is Islamic self care practices, Islamic self care practices? Sorry, just one second, there we go, is Islamic self care practices. So I want to start off firstly with our arcada our belief system, our theology, and believing in Allah subhanho wa Taala. And re revisiting that belief in Allah subhanho wa Taala is very, very important in Islamic self care. So the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, he frames our relationship with Allah subhana wa tada very beautifully. And he gives us an example of a woman that's in a marketplace that's lost her child, and she's going through the aisles, and every time she sees the child, she picks up that child and she embraces that child, yet it's not her
child. So tears start coming out of her eyes, tears of pain to pure tears of agony, till eventually she finds her child, and she embraces her child. And those tears of pain and agony now turned into tears of joy. And the companions of the low on the home having witnessed this with the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, he asked them, Do you think that this woman would ever throw her child into the fire? And he says, they say Kenda jasola never or messenger of Allah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, and it was at that moment that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam defined for us our relationship with Allah subhanho wa Taala. When he says, Allah who automobili birdie he meant the
heavy he the other day, that Allah subhanho wa Taala is more merciful and more compassionate, more loving, more caring towards his slaves, then this mother is towards her child. And that is our relationship with Allah subhana wa Tada. So it's very important to revisit that, that everything that happens in our life is a manifestation of mercy, justice, wisdom, love and compassion from our Lord subhanho wa Taala. Now, it's also important to tie this in two logical possibilities, and then understand what theological possibilities are. So in every given scenario, there's five logical possibilities that can come about, either what happens is absolute evil, or what happens is absolute
good, or the good and evil are equal, or the evil is greater than the good, or the good is or the or the evil is greater than the good or the good is greater than the evil. These are the five logical possibilities in any given scenario. Yet, when our scholars of the past to discuss this issue from a theological perspective, they say there are only two possible outcomes. Either it is absolute good, or the good is greater than the evil. There is no scenario where the good and evil are equal. There is no scenario where the evil is greater than the good. And there is no scenario where there's absolute evil. Now, you may be wondering right away, how do we reconcile this with the existence of
shavon, and the jail and all these other creation that we deem to be evil. The scholars responded to this by saying that even with the existence of shade on who is the most evil of Allah's creation, there are so many good opportunities that come out through his existence. So for example, every time you say I was a biLlahi, Min, Ash shaytani, r rajim, you are rewarded, every time you say Bismillah so that she died does not eat with you, you're rewarded every time you say every time you enter your house and you say Bismillah that chiffon cannot enter your house, you are rewarded every time you experience our sweater from shape line, and you fight that West USA, you are rewarded. shavon has
been the example in the Koran of what arrogance does to human beings that she thought was very intelligent. Yet his arrogance overpowered him when Allah subhanaw taala commanded him to prostrate he refused. So we became that example of what arrogance actually does. So these are all the positives that one can derive from the existence of shape one, and that is important to understand that in all of these possible logical scenarios, there are only two theological scenarios where whatever happens to us is absolutely
To good, or the good is greater than the evil. Now let's try to contextualize that in our lives. Even more personally, every calamity and hardship that we go through what is a good that can come out of this? Well, Your sins are going to be forgiven, your ranks are going to be raised, good deeds are being written for you. You're learning to be more patient, genuinely in times of hardship, people reach out to their Lord, and pray more and give more charity and do more good deeds. So these are all possible good things that can come out of calamities and hardship. Which brings us to our second self care practice, which is doing our calling to Allah and asking of Allah and supplicating
to Allah. Now, what's interesting is this concept of complaining to Allah, not about Allah. In the Quran, we find the example of jacoba he said, when he says a school Betsy were hers nail Allah, that I complain of my grief and my sorrow to Allah subhana wa Tada. So we see him complaining to Allah. Now I want to tie in this concept or do I never like to give this, you know, Introduction to it is that as human beings, we have this need to talk about our problems, we have this need to vent we have this need to express ourselves in the difficulty that we're going through. And that is one of the functions of doing over here, that you're expressing your print your pain and your grief. And
you're venting out to Allah, not about Allah subhanaw taala. And I'll get to that in a second. The second example that I can give you is in the incident of life, that we know the prophet SAW Allah who I knew Salah, he was going through extreme hardship, he went to these people seeking help and support. And he was, you know, genuine in his concern for them, and in wanting to save the year to not only did they rebuke him, they pelted him away, sallAllahu wasallam, to he bled, and at that time, in this moment of hardship, in this moment of, of grief and anxiety, he calls out to Allah, and in his daughter, he says, a school la called La quwata that all like complain to you about the
weakness that I'm experiencing right now that helplessness that I'm experiencing right now, I'm complaining to you, and the prophets of Allah complaint to Allah, in order to seek Allah spent with others help to express that they are weak and Allah is strong, that they are dependent on Allah subhanho wa Taala is self sufficient. So they would complain to Allah and not about Allah. Now when we say do not complain about Allah, this is something that is prohibited. So what does that exactly look like? So when we question Allah subhana wa tada is wisdom, things like, Oh Allah, how could you let this happen to me, Oh Allah, why is this happening to me? These questions are not befitting of a
believer. Now, sometimes they may naturally come to your head, when that happens. You see out the window, administrate on origin, and you're not sinful for that. But if you let that thought ponder and you brew, and then you eventually verbalize that statement, that is something very problematic that we have to be careful of. And this goes back to our first point, that our belief in Allah subhanho wa Taala is that anything that Allah subhanaw taala allows to happen to us is in reality in our best interest, if only we understood and could, you know, have the veil of the unseen, lifted so that we can see what can happen, which ties us into the second point is that in this human need of
wanting to express ourselves, and to express our problems, who can really help us in our time of need, and it always starts off with Allah subhanho wa Taala that nothing is possible, except with Allah La Hola, La quwata illa Allah there is no power or might accept with Allah subhanho wa Taala. So Allah subhanho wa Taala has to be the starting point of seeking help. And through the will of Allah panel down to the power of Allah penance either all becomes possible. So when you're looking for help make Allah Subhana Allah your starting point, and then seek help everywhere else. Now a question often arises, can we seek help from human beings? Does that not contradict our faith in
Allah subhanaw taala? And the answer to that is not at all. You start off by seeking help from Allah subhanho wa Taala. And if Allah subhanaw taala has provided for you a means to seek help from the creation, or anyone else that is out there, and we have the ability to help you, then this is perfectly fine. And this ties in perfectly to our topic of discussion today. That particularly when we're talking about mental health, one should not assume that if I become more observant of my face, it will automatically take away of all of my mental health concerns. If I increase my email, it will take away my depression. These are theological and logical fallacies. These are theological
And logical fallacies. And when an individual is not able to help themselves, they should be seeking professional help. And there's nothing wrong with this islamically there's nothing wrong with this islamically which brings us to our third point, which is the concept of disengagement. Now, the Salah itself is one of the eurocon. It's one of the pillars of Islam. And it is an act of obedience, it is an act of subservience to Allah subhanaw taala. But one of the benefits, if done properly, is that it is a form of disengagement, from our anxiety and from our worry, and that which is stressing us. And it's connecting us to the one that can take away our stress and anxiety. So particularly
when we talk about yoga, there's this concept of disengagement and being present in the moment and and in meditation. So loss serves that purpose, even though that it's not its primary purpose. And there's something I want to highlight over here is that how do you know if you've done yourself properly, there's a very simple metric system that you can use. If you leave the salon, relaxed and serene and tranquil, then know that the Salah has served its purpose. But if you're just as anxious or even more anxious, leaving the salon then you have not prayed properly, you have not prayed properly. And this is what the met the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam told you that to man,
that hastin through his prayer arogya was solely for in the color lentil Sunday, that go back and pray for you have not prayed. So the Salah is meant to make you more tranquil and more serene. And that is what one of the functions of the Salah is that you release all of your sorrow you release all of your pain to Allah subhana wa Tada. And you just focus on your spiritual being your spiritual presence, your desire for Jenna, your desire or wanting to be in the company of Allah subhanho wa Taala that is what you focus on in the Salah. And that will help you disengage from your problems. And just being able to do that is a very, very powerful experience. Which leads me to my last point
in terms of Islamic self care practices, being grateful to Allah subhanaw taala. And it's very interesting that if you notice, from the Dow, the supplication that we say in the morning, when we wake up, the first thing we're meant to say Alhamdulillah one lady here and better than I imagined that what you think in the short Praise be to Allah, the One that grivas life after our soul was taken away, and to him is our return. So you're starting off your day, praising Allah panel, it's honor, being grateful that Allah subhanaw taala gave you life back. And this was something that you didn't ask for. And it was something that was beyond your control. So this shows us that even when
we're thinking about things to be grateful for, there's so many things that Allah has given us that we haven't even asked for that if you observed in them. If you observed them, then you would understand that it is these subtle things that we take for granted that are so important to our lives, some kind of like, Can you imagine, Allah subhanaw taala doesn't allow our soldier turn back to us. We've passed away at that point. It is not something that we've made it out for, and Allah subhanaw taala gave it to us anyways, and that is why we thank Allah subhanaw taala as soon as we wake up. Now I have over here grateful for three things. This is a statement that some of the
scholars have attributed to Bob, other than other than others to surely have a body and some of the other pious predecessors. And that was that when the Sahaba, or their loved one home were tested, they were grateful to Allah subhanaw taala for three things. So in their moment of calamity in their moment of hardship, they're grateful to Allah subhanaw taala for three things, what are they grateful for? Number one, that their calamity was not in their faith that Allah subhanaw taala tested them in the dunya he didn't test them in their email, the fact that their faith did not waver, they were grateful to Allah subhanaw taala for that, number two, that the calamity was not as
great as it could have been. An individual loses $10 you should think he or she should think Allah subhanaw taala even lose 100 an individual is sick, they think Allah subhana wa tada that he didn't lose a limb or they didn't pass away an individual, you know, perhaps failed an exam or didn't get into the University of their choice, or is having problems in their marriage, a wide variety of issues. The fact that Allah subhanaw taala allowed you to be alive and make a vicar of him is something so great Subhan Allah is something so great, and that is something to thank Allah subhanaw taala for and then the third and last thing that they were grateful for is that Allah subhana wa
Taala allowed them to manifest their patients and not lose their temperament and not lose their court. Because what a terrible state it is that when a
An individual is going through a moment of hardship and calamity that did become obscene or vulgar or abusive. The fact that Allah subhanho wa Taala protected you from going into that state is something that the Sahaba do love on him used to thank Allah subhanho wa Taala. For something that's just our motto, highlighted already was Vicar and recitation of the Quran. And that is something that is very, very important, as well, that you engage just in in being present in remembering Allah subhanaw taala in saying Subhan Allah, and in recognizing how free Allah subhana wa Taala is, from every deficiency and saying and hamdulillah and recognizing that how every perfect name and
attribute belongs to Allah panadol every perfect characteristic is for Allah Subhana Allah to Allah and saying, Allahu Akbar, that there is nothing greater in existence other than Allah subhanho wa Taala and La ilaha illa Allah, and that there's no one worthy of worship except Allah, and just continuously engage in this advocate. And as Allah subhanaw taala tells us, Allah be liquid Allah, He taught on my envelope that in this indeed, in the remembrance of Allah subhanaw taala, that the heart does find rest. So these are Islamic self care practices that are important to keep engaged in, in terms of anxiety, and as well as outside of times of anxiety, you can also consider these
preventative measures for the stress and anxiety that that we experience, which leads us into daily life practices. And this is where I really talk about self care, where as human beings, we do need to take care of ourselves. And we do need to do things that you know,
take away our stress, and bring some joy to our life, and, and bring a smile to our face. And there's simple things like I want you to think about what a wonderful feeling it is to put on a fresh pair of socks that have just come out of the dryer, on a cold winter day, a lot of luck. But how beautiful that is over those people that love coffee, that first sip of coffee, that you get to drink, how amazing that is, right. So these are just,
you know, ways to take a break. And each person should recognize you know, what works for them, and what doesn't work for them. And I'm not condoning everything on this list, by the way, you know, put on some music and dance. I'm not condoning that, make some music. I'm not condoning that. What I'm sharing is that each person has their own way of de stressing and letting that stress go. And you need to find out what that is for yourself. And there are different things that you can utilize, from breathing exercises to taking a walk outside, to just sitting in the silence and reflecting to buying some flowers to calling a friend to taking a nap. You know, that is my go to that I feel
stressed, go take a nap. And hamdulillah you feel so much better when you wake up, find things to be grateful for forgive someone climate tree, write a poem, you know, coloring is as a phenomenal way. You know, often we talk about coloring for young kids, but it is a phenomenal way of letting stress go.
So these little simple things that can take away the stress from your life. And this is, you know, one of the things that sister muddle mentioned, it's finding time for yourself, prioritizing yourself. And this is a logical battle. It is an emotional battle that has to take place. But if you do not take care of yourself, you will not be able to be there for all the people that depend on you. Right, and you're not doing it for the sake of other people depending on you. You're doing it for your own sanity, you're doing it for your own well being. But often we justify neglecting ourselves, because we have to be there for others, we have to be there for others. And I know
sometimes, particularly for those of us that are married, particularly for our sisters, particularly for the mothers, you know, they feel that they have to carry the burden of the whole household. It's very important to have that conversation with your significant other that look, I need a break for myself. Can you help me out? It is difficult, but it is something that has to be done and particularly for the brothers that are listening in, or those of you that have wives, try your best, whatever you can to give them a break. They do so much for us. And it's not a form of repayment. We can't repay them. But it's just an act of civility and outgive humanity and act of expressing one's
love and support allow you to go on a complete different tangent. There is actually a post on the Huffington Post blog. The man died got divorced because he didn't put a glass in the sink. And you read through the article and it's a real life story about this man who thought that he got divorced that his wife divorced him because he didn't put a card the cup in the sink. But it was a an expression as they say that the straw that broke the camel's back. It was an expression of
How he just kept on portraying that he didn't value what his wife wanted. And he didn't value all the things that his wife did for him and appreciated those things. So one day when, you know, the time came and all he did was not placed a glass in the sink, she's like, that's it, I called it quits. But it was everything that led up to that moment with the most significant thing, not being appreciative of the things that she did do. So end of tangent back to these things, recognize the things that take your stress away, and practice them to the best of your ability, prioritizing yourself so that you can be a better version of yourself. And you can be there for those that depend
on you as well.
which moves us on to do you know, these don't us if you have that book called Islam Muslim or the mind app, there are sections on the eyes for stress and anxiety. And this is one of those two eyes and it's actually a very, very beautiful two are that I wish we had a lot of time to go into. But just to summarize, Allah in the Abdo give no abdic ignore ametek nausea TBI, Mauldin fear shock mocha iserlohn fear cowdog as I look at the coolness men who submitted enough sec oh and Zelda houfy keytab ic o alemayehu. I hadn't been have always thought of that behavior email, baby. And touch on RBI can be or neurosurgery, wa Jalla Herzl, he was the head the harmony that Oh Allah, I am your
servant, son of your servants, son of your maidservant. My forelock is in your hand, your command over me is forever executed and your decree over me as just, I asked you by every name belonging to you, which you named yourself with, or revealed in your book, or you talk to any of your creation, or you have preserved in the knowledge of the unseen with you, that you make the call on the life of my heart, and the light of my chest, and a departure from my sorrow and the release of my anxiety a lot. I mean, there's many, many lessons that are can be taken from this as well. But I've shared this link at the bottom. Think bytes.org this article just focuses on this too, and the lessons that
can be derived. Just a quick shout out to think bytes. What they generally do is to take articles from yaqeen Institute website and summarize them and make them bite sized. So you can read it in like two to three minutes, as opposed to like 40 or 50 minutes, that paper focuses on this. So it's a great resource to look over, but it's a beautiful blog to memorize and to engage with. And as you can see from the wording itself spell a very, very powerful
the next door is a lot of money out to become an HMI when when when actually when the cursor will bocalee will Jovan wadala again with Alberta region. And this is all lie take refuge in You from anxiety and sorrow, weakness and laziness, miserly ness and cowardice and burden of debts and being overpowered by men. And it's emblematic of the Allahu anhu he narrated about this, that I learned this by how frequently the Messenger of Allah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam used to repeat it. So this was constantly on his tongue. If you remember the section or sister mother was talking about being present, were one of the signs of worry is that you're either worried about the future or grieving
over the past the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam is seeking refuge in Allah, from worrying about the future or grieving over the past 200,000 are referring to those exactly and then asking Allah subhanaw taala for that refuge shows that Allah subhanaw taala is the starting point of all of our worries and all of our stress in terms of the health that is sought. So this is another good way to know you'll find it has no Muslim as well. Or actually, when I did a quick search on Google, I came across this article on medium.com. Seven is slamming the doors for anxiety and depression. So that was a great reference point as well that you can Google as well. And I will be making this
PowerPoint available later on in Sharla. Sister a man can send it out to you, which concludes with here's my contact information, I'm at your service to help out in any way that I can. Again, my specialization is more on the Islamic side. If you do need psychological support, then Sr miroir is the person to reach out to she is available on LinkedIn and I do believe that we will be sharing her email address as well. Anything that I've said that is correct is from Allah subhanaw taala alone and anything that I've said that is incorrect is from myself and sheep on your last panel Allah forgive us all and make things easy for all of us deserve from located and I will now hand it back
to our MC sister where
am I gonna everyone? Thank you so much sister modal and CIF need was very helpful. Tiffany we definitely validated all the naps I take so I appreciate it.
So now we're gonna
Just jump into q&a. I just wanted to make a quick note, we did look at all the questions that, you know, once everyone was registered, you submitted questions. Unfortunately, we can't go through all of them. So we've prioritize them, especially those that are especially relevant to this topic. For all of you other questions related to family, related to marriage, or just general religious questions. I want to validate them, I want to say that I can imagine it's really hard being in your situation, whether it's someone that's not treating you well, and so on, and so forth. So inshallah, please feel free to reach out to check and read and moreover, whoever you feel can best address your
needs. And with that being said, the first question, tomato, and Chef COVID model, if you feel like you want to jump in and add, please do so. The first question is, how are anxiety and depression different? And how are they dealt with differently?
Thank you for the question, what a and thank you Shannon of age for your presentation, I found it very, very beneficial, I handed in
the question the difference between anxiety and depression. And it's sort of a big topic to get into. But anxiety, like I said, is more about being in a state of alarm. Depression is more about being in a low mood in a low place, and having a hard time coming out of that. So what that can look like, could be losing interest in things that you normally would find interesting or pleasurable, low energy, inability to motivate yourself, perhaps, again, that low mood, the sadness, for some people, it can be thing, experiencing preoccupation with death, wanting to die. For some people, it can involve feeling guilty or worthless, you know, that kind of negative look towards yourself. So
depression can manifest more like that anxiety doesn't often present in the same way those some of those presenting symptoms can be similar. So some of those things I talked about in terms of signs and symptoms, you know, the low energy, the shifts in appetite, the withdrawing from friends, those can also be markers of depression. If you're sort of concerned about one over the other, for yourself, or for someone else, I would recommend perhaps reaching out for support, you can go see a family doctor, or you can maybe speak with someone that you trust, who might help you make sense of it. Or you can reach out to a professional, mental health professional. In terms of how you treat
them, though the second part of the question or deal with them, many of the strategies can be similar. Some of those cognitive strategies I talked to people who struggle with depression, oftentimes, sometimes kind of go into the place of the negative thinking and, and being hopeless and despairing. Some of those strategies I talked about can also be a benefit.
You know, some of the ways of self care and taking care of yourself that john made mentioned, can also be a benefit. But I do want to acknowledge that it also depends on the severity, we often sometimes use the word depression really easily. But there's a difference between sort of temporary or situational depression, in the sense that we sort of experience some of that low mood, and and what is clinical depression that could be diagnosed. And in those cases, therapy is often recommended. And in some cases, medication is often recommended. And so it really depends, it's hard for me to just sort of generally say what could or could not be helpful. But in both cases, it
generally depends on the severity. And it goes back to what I said in my presentation, how much is it disrupting your functioning, if you're so depressed, that you're not getting a bed, you're not going to school, you're maybe abandoning all of the things that typically would be things that you would engage in. That's more concerning. Similarly, with anxiety, if you're so anxious, you're not leaving the house, you're avoiding crowds or not seeing the people in your life that you love. Again, that becomes more concerning. So I hope that made sense for the person who asked that question. No, it definitely did. And the next question, we touched on that a little bit, so check me
out if you also want to jump in how to cope with constant anxiety about our sins or Day of Judgment.
Zack locker Thank you so much. You know, so how Allah
this concept of anxiety of relating to sins and the Day of Judgment is like all other forms of anxiety and stress, where when channeled properly, it can actually motivate us to be better and to do better, but when we allow it to overpower us, that is when it becomes very destructive. So finding that fine line and that balance is very, very important. And this is why in the Koran you'll find that Allah subhanaw taala mentions both concepts, forgiveness and paradise, as well as anger and the hellfire. Both of them are mentioned what's important to pay attention to his which one does Allah subhanaw taala mentioned more and emphasize more. Allah subhanho wa Taala emphasizes more the
forgiveness of Allah subhanho wa Taala and the preparation of Jenna for
The believers. So that is what the focus should be on. And I think another perspective to this is prior to the sin and posts, where there's a nice story that's mentioned in the field of Sultan Nisa about Abdullah bin ambassador, the Allahu anhu map, where a man came and confessed of committing murder, and even our boss or the loved one, the Homer told him that to seek forgiveness from Allah subhanho wa Taala, repent to him, be good to your mother go for Hajj, and given the specific advice, consoling him, and another man came and asked a question about committing murder. And then he reminds him of the iron sword nice. Where there are five different types of punishment that have
been prepared for the individual that killed someone unjustly and the students have ignored most of the law and Homer were perplexed that how are there two, such drastically different answers for the same crime. And even our busca de la Noma he mentioned that what the first one had committed the crime and there's nothing that you could do about it to change it. And he was remorseful and regretting what he had done. And for that individual, we remind them of the forgiveness and mercy of Allah subhanho wa Taala, the other individual that before they commit a crime, you remind them of the severity of the crime, to hinder them from doing so. And so even when we think about this
concept of being afraid, on the day of judgment and this concept of sin, use it as a preventative measure. But if it is something that has happened and taken place, already, put your trust in the last panel once I know that there's a reason why he keeps reminding us that he is all over Florida and I'd like him explicitly telling us you're a bird you're living in a sort of water and foresee him. They're talking to me Rahmatullah in the law. He also don't obey Jamia at all my slave that have transgressed against themselves, do not despair of the mercy of Allah, or surely Allah subhanho wa Taala forgives all sins. So that reminder has to be there to use both of these emotions in the
right places, that before the sin is committed to be fearful of Allah subhanaw taala and when the sin has been committed, then know that Allah subhanaw taala is often his most forgiving, his most forgiving and carried over here. This is not a licensed intentionally committed sin. That is not something anyone can can condone or advocate for. But when you've tried your best to fight off committing that sin, then know that Allah subhana wa tada is forgiving thereafter. Allah subhanaw taala knows best.
does not follow hate on chicken and read and a question to somewhat follow up to that. does Allah punish us for feeling anxious or being depressed?
know Allah subhanho wa Taala does not punish us for those things. What is an interesting discussion to have, particularly from a spiritual slash theological perspective, is why do we feel sad sometimes, and we don't know what's causing that sadness. A lot of the scholars not a lot, some of the scholars of the past like so if you're under 30, so if you have no idea and other than them, they said that these are the sins that we committed, they didn't seek forgiveness from Allah subhanaw taala for so that Allah subhanaw taala sends this sadness as a way of purifying those sins from us. So one of the things that we can engage in is in constant is still for seeking forgiveness
from Allah subhanaw taala for any and every sin that we have committed and turning to Allah subhanaw taala in repentance and forgiveness, so know that Allah subhanaw taala will not punish you for being in a state of anxiety or for being in a state of sadness or being in a state of, you know, depression. These are tests from Allah subhana wa tada that all of us are tested in Allah subhanaw taala, he tells us in Surah Baqarah that you will be tested even in in our feeling of loss in yourself. And that is the emotional side of things that when you yourself, feel down. This is a test from Allah subhana wa Tada. And this Allah subhanaw taala will not punish us for being in that
state. And Allah subhanaw taala knows best.
And Sister miroir someone asked, How can someone who never really experienced anxiety, gain a better understanding to support someone who's going through it?
Yeah, that can be challenging sometimes. But I really strongly believe that you don't have to, I wouldn't be a very effective counselor if I had to experience everything that my clients experienced in order to be able to help them. Right. So having had that experience isn't necessary, but what I what I often recommend is trying to
really create a space that is safe for that parent person to share with you. And so what that means is trying to come from a place of empathy, of not judging them. You know, there's some times where with best of intentions, we often say things to people who are struggling with mental health type issues.
We say things to them that we'd never say to someone who was struggling with a physical health issue. You know, if someone was dealing with diabetes and had to take insulin all the time, we wouldn't be, you know, down on them for needing to take a medication. If someone had, you know, a broken leg, or you know, dealing with cancer, we wouldn't have an expectation that they just need to get over it, or they just need to try harder. But unfortunately, sometimes when people are struggling with mental health things which are not often as visible, we sometimes don't afford them the same grace and not from a place again, I want to be clear that I'm not seeing people come at it
from a place of wanting to harm or from a negative place. But sometimes we don't have that understanding. And so supporting someone who has anxiety, you know, being able to hear them, you know, give them space to talk about some of the things that maybe are concerning to them. But also being that friend, or that loved one who will also tell them to go get help if they need it. Right. Sometimes people are looking for that last push or for that extra support, encouraging people to do some of the things that we talked about, you know, inviting them to go out for a walk with you suggesting for them to do some of those self care, things that we talked about, you know, and just
connecting with them, you know, depending on what it is, what is the source of their anxiety, what's happening with them, there may be things that you can actively do to support them. But if not, then again, just providing that listening ear that safe place for them to have those conversations, and then to push them to say, Hey, can you considered going to see your family doctor Have you considered going to talk to a mental health professional or to a Shay or to whoever that might be able to help them. So you don't have to have had that experience of anxiety in order to be able to help someone else with it. You know, the other pieces, maybe being able to kind of turn it around,
even if you haven't experienced anxiety, if you were to experience anxiety, what might be helpful for you, and then maybe offering that if you think it would be helpful to have someone to talk with and making sure that you're offering that. I hope that makes sense. But I think that's sort of it's hard sometimes with with kind of general general questions, but it depends on how serious it is. And like I said, if it's really serious than being that friend that says you need help, how can I help you get help? You know, what can I do? Right?
So for this next question, if you can both kind of paint a picture, I kind of combined a bunch of questions together of where's the line where we can just do it ourselves, we can, you know, support ourselves kind of get over it or you know, it's just a normal thing. And then where's the, you know, the other line of No, we really need to see, you know, someone for medical or psychological sport. And then where's the line of this is something like religious and we can just deal with in a religious matter,
Jeff, and VEDA let you
does that go like that? I appreciate that. So anything I say that's incorrect, psychologically, you can correct me inshallah.
My understanding of this issue and understanding that it's such a vague question, that I can go and vary in various ways, but there's something that's situationally related and non situationally related, then there's something that's preventative and then there's something that's related to the moment itself. So the first thing I would say that it's always good to seek preventative treatment, where, you know, just getting
in touch with your doctor regularly, and letting them do their assessment of you. That's great. Seeking mental health supports and support groups as a preventative measure is great. Seeing a psychologist just for optimization is also great. So those are in the preventative space there in terms of seeking help. Now, if something has happened, that you've gone through an experience, like someone passing away, like experiencing COVID, failing an exam, a divorce, something that we can almost, you know, categorize as as traumatic. It's normal to feel down and depressed and to feel,
you know, a loss of emotion at that time. In fact, if you don't feel anything, then I would suggest that you get a further reason to seek help add to that time. Now, add to that moment, if it's transient, as the word that has been used mean that it goes away after a little while, and you're going back to normal and things are coping after that you're coping with things after that. That's perfect. And I think the key emphasis is, are you able to manage your day to day stress your day to day activities. If you're able to manage those day to day activities, then fluctuation is normal and can be expected. However, if you reach a phase where you cannot deal with your day to day activities
and your day to day stresses, then at that point you should be seeking help at that time. Now where does religious treatment fall into place? I believe that religious treatment is always complimentary to everything else.
That you do any form of medication, any form of, you know, psychological support that you're seeking, religious and spiritual treatment is always complimentary to it. So always have your regular word of the Koran, your regular word of Vicar, your dog should always be there. You know, it's panela. Just yesterday, I was talking about how even between the heart and soul on Wednesdays, there's a time that Allah subhanaw taala answers to us, it will reflect on this concept of Why are there so many moments throughout our lives that Allah subhanaw taala accepts to us, the last third of the night, every single night, when an individual is fasting, when an individual is traveling,
when an individual is sick, a person going through hardship and calamity, these are all, you know, instances that Allah subhanaw taala accepts our eyes, the wisdom behind it is because Allah Subhana, Allah wants us to call out. So making a donation should be regular as well, that is, is always complimentary, every other form of treatment that you're seeking and experiencing as well. And a lead lead SR model correct. Anything that I've said I was incorrect and add on from there, inshallah.
You You didn't say anything that I need to correct. And and
to add to that, I think I go back to what I said, and I think you can have it also touched on right now. And the question is, are you managing your day to day life? And I asked that question, and I really encourage you to reflect what that even means. And the reason I say that is sometimes Google will feel I'm still going to work, and I'm still sort of getting all my responsibilities done. And so therefore, that must mean I'm managing, that may not mean that you're managing, especially if you're, say really irritable, and you're snapping at your loved ones all the time, or your ability to parent is, is maybe perhaps not as not as great, you're showing up at work. But your
effectiveness or your productivity is not really what it used to be right. So so it's always comparing it to when you're doing well versus what you're doing now. And where is that line? That's one thing to consider. The other thing to consider is, is, in terms of some of the strategies that I talked about, where you know, Chef mega was talking about that preventative piece, everything I mentioned is preventative in terms of some of those things, you don't have to wait till you're in the middle of an experience of anxiety or depression or whatever else to do them. If you think about you know, when we're in school, and we do all those fire drills, you know, so that the reason we do
them is so that in the moment, when, when a fire alarm goes off in a school, everybody knows what they're supposed to be doing. That's not the time to be questioning and thinking, well, which way do I go. And when we practice those all of the time, so that in a moment of an emergency, we know what to do. All of these strategies work the exact same way. If we do these things proactively consistently, to the extent that we're capable, knowing that we're human, and sometimes they will dip and sometimes we'll be better at them, if you're able to be more consistent with those things, and not just do them reactively, but preventatively, that will also help. But specific to the
question in terms of when to seek medical help. If you're unsure, seek medical help, or mental health, it's not going to harm you, you know, going to see a therapist or a family doctor, they will give you a sense of how sort of normal, I hesitate to use that word, but how typical, you know, so in the time of COVID, what we're all going through right now, I think most of us can acknowledge that we've all experienced some form of anxiety, it's typical, it's expected, we're all reacting normally to something really abnormal. And so that that makes sense. But if in absence of all of this, if I was having a lot of those extreme reactions, then maybe a doctor or a mental health
professional would say, Hey, this is something to be concerned about, right? It's not, you know, going to your doctor or going to see a mental health professional is not going to be harmful. And I'll speak for myself as a mental health professional. If you were to come to me if someone were to come to me and explain certain things. And I didn't think it was
anything to be concerned about from a state mental health perspective, I would tell them that I wouldn't encourage people to continue seeing me if there wasn't anything that needed to be addressed. And so I'd have these conversations very frankly. But a huge part of it is knowing yourself, being able to reflect internally to know how far off of how I typically am is this current situation? And do I feel like I could benefit from that extra help. The other thing I wanted to say really quickly is is from a self care perspective, as well. And I recognize we're just one at a time. So I'll wrap up really quickly. Because I want to honor people's time is
definitely mentioned earlier, the idea of the importance of our self care and taking care and prioritizing ourselves. It's also in some senses, and I think of it this way, Jeff, please correct me if I'm wrong from a faith perspective, but I think of our bodies and our existence here as an Amana from God as a trust from God. And so it is, I think, in some sense
As a form of worship and a responsibility that we have to take care of ourselves to be in optimal mental and physical states and and that's not to say we're sinning if we don't do that, well love Allah. But the idea that you're doing this as it's a good thing, in fact, it's a it's a encouraged thing to take care of yourself, physically take care of yourself mentally and emotionally to dedicate time to yourself. It's not selfishness, it is really, really important so that you are then able to support and care for the people in your life. So that's just one more way to think about it as well. And I'll stop I probably went off on a tangent and I apologize. It's
just like, okay, thank you so much.
So we're gonna end here. Well, we had a few more questions, but inshallah these lovely speakers will be there. For you. I will. This is your contact information, while everybody that's watching can take a screenshot, and I believe we'll be sending out some slides to you. I want to thank you guys for joining us. Thank you again to our speakers, and everyone behind the scenes that you don't always see in the front lines, who made this event happen and makes make many similar events happen. So do keep a lookout for icy events, you can follow their Facebook page. And with that, I will pass it on to Jeff maybe for recording. Is that correct? I thank you so much without much gratitude to
you for emceeing the event so professionally and diligently does occur thank you so much my last panel john, we could have you on your scale of good deeds. I mean, I was a blank sheet ontology and someone else from another him will also insert a few horses in the lead in a manner where I'm no saw the head what also been happy with also the server spinal column will be handy cashola in the handle and stock Furukawa lake is located and everyone Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh