Greetings from the Al-Abidaat

Dear all,
This blog is initially a place for the three people who write in it to share our thoughts on life. However, if any of our pieces benefit and interest you, we welcome you to share your thoughts on comments. Thank you.

Friday, June 24, 2011

When We Never Say NO

   KakNgah here.

   Today Abuya called, which was a nice surprise since he doesn't usually do that. Normally when I call home, I'd talk to Ummi and sometimes the boys if they happen to answer the call. I only talk to Abuya when I have something to ask. (He's usually doing something else anyway when I call, like sleeping or cutting the grass...)

   Abuya said Mama (who is Abuya's eldest sister) texted him asking if I wanted to be a substitute teacher at her school. Now, Mama is a teacher at a secondary school, and the class that she's offering is a Form 6 class. Even thinking about it sends cold shivers up my spine. Even now, when people I don't know meet me for the first time, they'd ask me which school I go to. Or if I happen to visit KakYong or follow my boss to the institute, they'd ask which school I go to and if it was the school holidays.

   Yeah. I get that a lot. I don't think I look that young (but of course you'd have to see me to agree or otherwise). And I'm not really that small (KakYong says the way I walk makes me look short. What???). I suppose I am rather thin (super thin according to most people), but I think it's more to the fact that I don't put up on make-up and dress rather simply compared to some of my friends.

   This worries one of my lecturers, Madam Z. She often calls me, usually late at night, and we often chat up to 1 hour. Sometimes I wonder why it is so much easier for me to connect with old(er) people. Madam Z said I have an old soul. Anyway, she said that she's worried that I might not get suitors because I look far too young and unsophisticated. I look like a school girl, just like she did when she was my age.

   More about that in another post. I should get back to the topic. Anyway, I already have a temporary job (I might have mentioned it in one or two posts), so it's a no-no. But what I really want to talk about is how even if I did not already have a job, the chances of me accepting the offer is small due to my low self esteem on being able to teach and guide older students, I was tempted to say yes. YES!

   I began to find out sometime ago that I am not good at saying no. Usually this occurs when people asks for help or offer me jobs (which usually  helps them in a way or another too, when I think of it). Mama once said that it runs in the family. One of friends once called me a 'Yes' girl.

   I'm sure that there are many of you out there who also happen to be a 'Yes' person. It's not a bad trait,I suppose, in fact it means that you're willing to help people and that's a good quality. The problem is that sometimes, when you say Yes too often, or all the time, and NEVER say No, you might just be too overwhelmed by everything and in the end you'll screw up in both helping people and completing your own work.

   I have experienced several occasions when I agreed to do some work for too many things and later found myself sleepless several nights just for the sake of completing my own work. I've become rather used to that (Ummi calls me a vampire because I don't sleep at night- maybe an owl would be a better nickname? At least  owls are wise... *smug).

   So you probably understand why I was compelled to say 'yes' to Mama's offer, even though I really wanted to say 'No'. The truth is, I do feel that I'd like to experience teaching older students, but I really want to get back home after I finish my job here, sign up for driving lessons, get started on baking which I miss terribly, chat with Ummi, Abuya and the boys and just rest... I need rest.

   I said No. Well, I didn't say no exactly, but I said that I already had a job so I asked if I could offer it to my friend Jannah (who happens to be an ex-student of Mama's).

   Then I thought about all about hwo to know when to say Yes and when to say No.

   And I have come to a conclusion. It's alright to say Yes. It's alright to be a 'Yes' person. It's alright to get a little burdened by your own work and other people's work at the same time. Why? Because helping people is good. There have been many occasions when a small offer that I did for a friend turned out well- I got treated to something, or get the favour returned. Of course, you shouldn't do favours for people and expect anything in return. You shouldn't even expect people to remember that you've done them a favour. But when people do remember, and they help you back when you ask for it, that's good, right?

   You do have to know when to say No though. You shouldn't say 'Yes' when someone asks you to do their assignments for them. You shouldn't say 'Yes' when somebody asks you to do something bad. You shouldn't say Yes when someone asks you if it's okay to do something bad. Sometimes being nice doesn't mean agreeing to everything people say. Telling the truth is a nice thing to do too, but it's not easy.

   Yes. No. Make the best choice, and follow your instincts. And always, always put your trust in Allah. Insya-Allah you'll be fine.


KakYong June 25, 2011 at 8:54 AM  

How well I understand what you are saying. Dr Fadila said that it's better to say know there and then when you know you can't do it, rather than say yes, hoping or deluding yourself, while you know that you probably cannot make it, and ends up not doing it after all and disappointing the other party. She offered me a job, and I said yes and later she saw that I was rushing here and there, she guessed that I'm neglecting some of work (one of them hers), and asked me again, and that time I reluctantly answered no. So she gave it to someone else, which is too bad cause i really want to work with her, except that I can't at the moment. See what happens when you get too greedy and say yes all the time? Like I said, there's only so much that we can do, with our limited time, energy, skills. And she said to learn to say no. She made me say it a few times =p.

Anyway, while saying yes to other people, it means that you may be saying no to yourself. Get what I mean? Like me, agreeing to do things for other people means I have less time for my own research, which is not good...

Sumaiyyah June 25, 2011 at 4:30 PM  

Wow that comment could have qualified for a post!

Yes, we delude ourselves as well as other people. And that was good of your lecturer, haha.

It's not easy to get out of the habit though. I don't want to disappoint people (even if they may not be disappointed). It's so hard to resist when people ask you for help even if you can't do it, especially if they're really nice people. It's quite a bit if a dilemma... hoho

Umaidah Al-Abid June 28, 2011 at 8:29 PM  

I read an article I found in productive muslim website. Here's the link. May we find benefit from it, I.Allah. Six Secrets to Saying "No"

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