Fr TAYYIB Book, Forward by Mufti Menk
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Chapter 10 encouragement and motivation along the way.
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Let's clarify one thing. It's helpful to be strongly motivated when starting out to do anything. But motivation is not strictly necessary at all.
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We'll examine this in this chapter.
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It's a very common mistake for people to feel that motivation needs to be kept up throughout their efforts in anything, whether it be studying work or home life.
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Motivation is a feeling and as such, it arises from the knifes motivation is a feeling that we might conquer, overcome, be at our best and so on.
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However, the knifes is unreliable and fickle, motivation becomes extinct after the initial exciting or new parts of a project have passed.
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to really succeed, we would be wiser to rely on something more useful and consistent on top of motivation, and that is commitment.
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Commitment comes from the intellect
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and it is bolstered by the heart.
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commitment is far more logical and sane. And therefore, it's better to stick with it because it's consistent and
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and it will remain with you till the end. It won't be fazed by whether you're having good or bad days. You're just calmly committed to doing something so you get on with it.
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When motivation dies, the opposite happens. We get demotivated, we find ourselves gripped by the knifes to break our rules. We end up thinking things like well, what the hell it's too hard. It's too boring. It's too slow.
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And this is when the heart comes in. With heart we go back to our principles of conduct and well being
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with the heart. We asked the higher better questions such as? Is it okay to feel doubts from time to time?
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Is it better to keep an eye on the longer term goal?
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Will we feel better tomorrow? What would Allah advise me to do here?
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Can I accept that feelings are just temporary and stick to my commitment anyway?
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Is there a way to still feel okay for having bad thoughts and just carry on?
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Wouldn't a bit of dua, or Salah helped me out here.
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What would I gain if I looked at my truths of life and my rules of conduct as per my o'clock.
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So the intellect and heart being a source of commitment and wisdom are more effective than relying just on motivation for the knifes however, we would be unwise and incomplete to live a life that ignores enough to ignore our motivations altogether. It turns out that truly wise people have a way of working with their nuts, giving it a bit of a taste of what it enjoys, and relying on it for certain things that extra bit of get up and go.
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Whether that be a sense of victory, pride, celebration, security, and so on.
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In devising a way to help enough's along, we start living a more complete and integrated life where events may come for us to perceive. But we react with them emotionally, we act with them intellectually. But we put that all together to create a wise decision and we retain our composure.
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Furthermore, there are other important things that can help us to remain motivated. We'll talk about these in the exercise section of the book. But these things include realistic stage targets for weight loss, celebrating and giving thanks for when we complete any single action in the right way. really thinking a lot and giving the nuts a good feeling that we deserve.
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We eat as we see fit. There's no special foods or diets required. And we don't ban stuff, we can have exactly what we continue to have. We can just do the fasting part, if that's what we choose to do. being gentle with ourselves is key being moderate within us. The more we do so the more it will come round to align its own wishes to those of our intellect and heart.
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The Jihad enough's, a battle against enough a lifelong thing becomes a little bit easier.
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We can save our food more.
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When we take our time with food and eating really slowly, giving thanks for each bite. The nafs becomes alive with senses and joy. We'll probably end up eating better foods as a result to this happens because we're making deep changes to the way the body mind handle hunger. Natural
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urges to eat cheap snacks will just diminish. It's far better than relying on willpower. willpower is unreliable and it fails. Fasting relies on strong inbuilt biological processes and the support of Allah Himself.
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What are the lifestyle could say that?
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Remember the butterfly effect as well. Everything has a knock on influence in life, sometimes directly, other ways unseen, we will have more money leftover, we will feel better all round. Our old clothes will fit again. Our friends and spouses will be happy for us.
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And we are one with many others. The knifes feel strongly encouraged by a sense of doing things with others on the same mission. Every year for a full month, we joined 1000s in a Muslim mean wide effort to reclaim the benefits of a lifestyle that Islam has told us about for hundreds of years and outside Ramadan. Because we prefer to fast on Mondays and Thursdays, we know we'll be joining 1000s of other Muslims to
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let's not forget that we enjoy better mental health and well being. The third method is a whole layer of wisdom and guidance above the simple health and nutrition.
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It has reminders and actions that help us to be our final selves. As people.
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We don't hit this wall of no further loss, which tends to happen after most of the dieting methods. Because our metabolic rate doesn't actually diminish. We earn the pleasure of Allah in following the ways of the profit. And in keeping nephal fasts as part of our ordinary life. That gain is worthy of the task alone, irrespective of weight loss or anything else.
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So this is not about a phase of life, or a bootcamp to hit some kind of target. Those things may work, but they have big problems. They tax the brain when you do them. And when you stop the poor health returns, and you're none the wiser about anything else in life
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in a way the Islamic way that they your way is exactly the opposite. This is about how we live everyday life. And how we naturally find it easier to live that way. Once we are set up for it.
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That is not a fixed target at a fixed finish line. It's a way of being right now.
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It's easier on the mind to compared to the ideas of reducing this or that food or avoiding bad foods. Fasting is far less imposing on your brain.
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When you fast, you no longer have to make those ties and decisions about food all the time. It's true and unfortunate that when we try to avoid food, we become focused on it. And often this overwhelms us and we just let go and eat when we run out of patience.
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Fasting is clear, don't eat anything. And in a Muslim fast, you don't even drink anything.
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For a health only fast, you can drink water and tea, herbal teas, but those are not Muslim fast as such. We'll discuss those a bit later.
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They're not an Islamic, they are merely fast, where you take fluid, and you're doing it just for health. And let's not forget that for us Muslims fasting is easier because we don't set the rules internally. Allah gives us the rules for when we fast through Islam.
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We often break our own rules, because we don't really have that much control of ourselves. But when Allah sets rules, our maker we have far more respect for those. So in a way, isn't it a wonderful gift from Allah that He offers us this opportunity to fast sets the rules for us.
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When we let go of our own rules, which are so easily broken, in moments of fatigue or frustration, we get to live by a laws rules instead, eating and drinking when he has said in a way he has described very clearly.
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The amount of mental energy freed up is phenomenal. In fact, the extra joy you see in people who fast after having tried so many diets before is because of this very factor. Their cognitive load, the amount of decisions they have to make is vastly reduced. The mind feels lighter and unburdened, when it no longer has to make difficult or tawdry decisions over which foods are tempting and which ones to avoid. A load feels lifted.
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When you start that way, you get to go and live your life and have the mental space to do all the things that you want. Feeling wonderful because you have finally taken care of one very important thing that has been so difficult until now.
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May this be indeed what we all discover. I mean
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In this chapter
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About Tarek Kareem Harris
Tarek Kareem Harris, better known as Dr. TK Harris – MD DpOL (Oxon). Dr Harris is medical doctor who specialises in everyday mental health and wellbeing in Islam. He is ever thankful of his friend Mufti Menk, who introduced his work to the public.
He trained medically in Edinburgh and Oxford some 25 years ago and first worked as a heart surgeon, where he became fascinated as to how stress and bad news caused problems like heart attacks. He found his true calling in examining how the mind and body affect each other, and turned to neuroscience. He has been a neurospsychiatrist since then, helping thousands of people regain their mental health without financial cost to them.
Tarek Kareem Harris, later returned to Oxford to do study advanced organisational leadership, and began helping high-functioning people to thrive in their chosen fields using performance coaching methods. He studied the connections between the sciences of happiness, mental wellbeing and mental illness, and how they connect to Islam in everyday life.