Channel: Tarek Kareem Harris
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Chapter Four, how to work with this book or program. The aims of this section are to understand how to read the knowledge parts of the book, to understand how to approach the quizzes and tests to consider who could help you if anyone, and to understand the attitude of faith and optimism in a bit more detail.
There are many different strategies in this program, and all of them require some gentle effort to be put in some parts or just reading and reflecting on what you read. But I want you to practice something called active reading. This is a very relaxed process, which improves memory and understanding vastly. You have all the time in the world, respect yourself, don't rush. Think of the steps in terms of abbreviations s, a RR s, SARS, and those abbreviations stand for skim, ask, read, remember, and skim again. So going through each one, skim before you read any chapter, have a skim of it. So if you're listening to the audiobook, just sort of jump through little parts for a couple
of minutes and note down the words that pop up, get a vague idea.
I've helped you by putting the aims at the beginning of most chapters, as I announced at the beginning of this one. Secondly, ask, ask yourself a few questions which are relevant to you in that chapter. So what do you want to know from that chapter? And how would that knowledge relate to your particular situation? Right? That means you you get a sense of direction to what you want to learn. Third is read, read the chapter through line by line. And if you have a pen and paper, make a few notes just to scribble the useful word or sentence or phrase, stop to ponder and pause recording, if you're intrigued by something, or if you want to enrich it in your mind. And if something seems
confusing, just leave it and go to the next point, you don't need to labor, your understanding too much just sort of float through it. Fourth is our for remember, once you have read, close your eyes and try to remember, say five main points about what the chapter was about, and why it would help you in particular, answering those questions that you asked at the beginning. And five is skim again. So have a skim of the chapter again, to shut down and fix your memory. Doing this helps your memory and your motivation. Because motivation is affected by your sense of, you know, what have I read and how confident do I feel about it, it feels better that you've actually read and you're
motivated to carry on, the knowledge is far more likely to help you out if you do it this way. And this method is in fact useful for anything you want to read and learn. As you get better at it, you will also get much quicker inshallah.
And when it comes to the interactive parts of this program, there's lots of interactive questionnaires. So there's bits of information, and there'll be points of learning. And then they lead to tests, quizzes, rating scales. And all of these are designed to help you learn in more detail about both the condition or the situation that's being talked about. And yourself. Many of the exercises will have a repeated element like exercises in the gym, it's important to know that one dose of any medicine isn't enough. People sometimes talk about therapy, and they say, Well, yes, I went and it worked for a little while. And then I forgot. Well, what do you expect the body
doesn't take one dose of antibiotic when you were a child, and then you never need them again, in the same way knowledge and learning. They require refreshment, you need to return to them and repeat them in order to see how well you're doing compared to before
to go over the important facts again. And to gain a picture of how you are over time and how you might even interpret the questions differently. The further you go along.
nobody reads the Quran just once. We repeat the same lessons, even the ones we think we know, because they find a deeper place a deeper resonance in our hearts with each repetition Alhamdulillah there are scholars who can spend years and years just studying two or three Ayah from the Quran, and still find that they're learning more every day.
There'll be other parts of these questions and quizzes that will ask you to add thoughts of your own. You might need to generate solutions. You might need to write your ideas down. Or you might need to then check in once a week just to see how you've done or how your knowledge is evolving. So you think of this whole program as a bit of a mental gym.
You kind of come here to work out. And like any gym, you can, you can find it sort of upsetting or tiring. If you go in and sort of, you know, give it your 100%, you're not meant to do 100% forever. In fact, you know, give it around 50 or 60%. So you're not, you're not exhausting yourself. That way you can feel all right and you your knowledge will grow if you're patient, and you're not exhausting and burning yourself out. If you can, though, try to master each technique before moving on to the next strategy. Even if this means you spend a couple of weeks or several weeks working on just one type of exercise. If you find this isn't working out at all, then that's okay, skip ahead. But
generally speaking, try to master one thing before you move on to the next because then it builds on itself.
Not all strategies will work out for everyone, they will all be a little bit hard. After all, you are conquering a difficult problem. Very few great problems are overcome easily or you know, immediately. Most Great things are overcome gently and calmly.
In terms of how often you should work on the exercises, try to stick to a regular schedule. Most exercises are suited to about half an hour. So steal the time and put it into your day and put it into your calendar your phone. Or make a reminder chart on your wall with days marked out. You know, if you look at the serious people in a gym, they often walk around with a little notebook, or they note their progress on a device or a phone or step counter or whatever. Measuring and recording is how victory is mapped out. And that's the same for mental health. In fact, even more relevant for mental health because you know, you can't necessarily see the gains, like you might do if you go to
But unlike the gym dope. Thankfully, this book doesn't need you to be dressed in special clothing or anything ridiculous like that, you can ease into this book. And again, treat it like it's a warm, comfortable place. Take it in slowly and steadily. Everyone has their own cozy time when they feel they can take a few moments to themselves with a cup of tea and peace. find yours, perhaps yours is after fudger or during half an hour of peace at lunchtime or in the evening. Make it in a comfortable place and mark the time off in a scheduler or calendar. And for any given exercise. Pick a regular time and place for working on it once a week, maximum twice a week for about an hour a
You don't need to do Pete them too frequently, because you lose the effect and they just become dull and beautiful. There are some smaller exercises, you know, five minute ones or 10 minute ones that you can do every day. But you know, we'll state roughly how long they meant to take as we come across them. Overall, you are going to reclaim some confidence in yourself. Allah made confidence in you. He gave you a great intellect in there. I'm pointing at your head.
I'll show you the guidance, the roadmap, but you must work on this journey. You're a sensible and intelligent person with your own mind. practice using your own mind and make your own decisions. You can decide what works for you. There may be things you like and don't like, that you don't get on with. Nobody is a machine and nobody knows everything. If you get something wrong, or it doesn't go anywhere, that's totally fine. You will find your own way inshallah. And it starts here. Now, the present moment is a great gift that Allah has given us. So let's just move along with it. Let's talk a little bit about who you might need or want to help you.
First of all, remember Allah Himself is going to help you ask Him and He will come. We've talked about the wires, and you will see my YouTube videos about how to ask for dua. Allah will help your brain to find the solutions and wisdom that float above all difficulties. You put in the work and the dua. And Allah will provide the relief and eventual cure at the time that is right for you. So you've got no reason to be concerned or worries. do involve ask someone else to be involved. If they are willing and you're inclined.
Other people can help by a number of ways. Firstly, a loved one who's who knows that you're going through a tough situation can give you that gentle touch that extra confidence and support when they know that look you're working on something. They can perhaps remind you when it's that time of the week or be there for you when you're struggling with one question or exercise
Other people can also be helpful in forming, teaming up situations. So if you find or know someone who has a similar issue, and you decide to work on things together, that actually helps with motivation and also helps with accountability, because you'll turn up to things you scheduled with someone else.
Some people even use the book when they work with their therapist, because it's just a sort of structure by which you can sort of go through a session if you like. If your therapist has a copy of the book and the exercises, it's perfectly doable.
And if you're scatterbrained, don't despair. You have got every right to ask someone to ring you or remind you when you're due to do a session, or to help you fill out the quizzes during the pen bits. If you're struggling with writing your thoughts down.
Use your phone as a reminder device if you'd like you know, we're stuck to our phones and they're stuck to us. Put in the reminder in your calendar.
Another person is not totally essential unless you are in a severely impaired mental state, and you can't even focus for a second.
In that case, you need help. But if you feel okay with trying things out yourself, then go right ahead. If it's too much, then make a plan B, get some outside help. And remember, as I said before, a lot is with you.
If you've got the right intention, then alone will give you what you need exactly at the right time.
End of Chapter