“I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.”
― Bruce Lee
― Bruce Lee
A couple weeks ago, I felt somewhat stressed and to some extent, suffocated. I felt that I had a huge boulder on my shoulder, pushing me down. I felt like a failure because I felt that I wasn't doing as much as I ought to. I was really feeling out of sort.
Then, I spoke to a dear friend.
I really do find it amazing how whenever I feel lost or out of sort, God always sends me someone to help me work out my kinks, to enable me see things clearly then after. We must always have faith that God will answer our dua every time we recite 'Guide me to the straight path' - Al-Fatihah 1:6.
Anyway, I was telling my friend about being frustrated in not be being able to do certain things and she said to me, "sister, we must live according to our expectations and not other people's". Her statement was like a bolt of lightning that went straight into my fuzzy brain and zapped my senses back to earth.
OMG!. It was then that I realised that I was working myself to the bone in order to live up to what people expects me to be. In other words, I lost myself and became miserable in the process. I also became very tired both physically and emotionally.
Each and every one of us have our own purpose in life. We each have our own strength and weaknesses. We have our own goals and aims. We even succeed and fail differently. That is how unique God had created each of us. When I got swept away by world, I forgot that I'm suppose to celebrate being different, being ME. I can never be like anyone else and chances are, I can never live up to other people's expectations of how or what I should be. I should only be myself.
After talking to my friend, I feel somewhat liberated from the invisible shackles that were dragging me down. I crawled back into my coconut shell (haven't done that in a while) to think and started remembering my own purpose and goals. I recounted the original reasons as to why I do the things that I do. I started doing what I do for God and me and I want it to continue that way till my last breathe.
I also looked at my own family. As a wife and mother, I have responsibilities towards my husband and children. They are my amanah and they are my Jannah.
So, here's my advice. Work and strive on your own expectations. Forget about what others expects of you as you may never be able to fulfill them. Doing your best should be enough for you. Know your own limitations and work around your own schedule and not others. It's okay to fail sometimes as failure is success in the making. Make yourself and the people who matters to you, happy. If others are unhappy with you, then it's their problem and not yours. Take your time and savor your moment. Don't let anyone rush you. Dictate your time. Accept the obstacles encountered along the way as stepping stones to excellence. Making a positive progress is better than completing the task miserably.
Life is short. Hold on to your dreams and don't let anyone tell you that achieving it is not possible. Always be thankful to Allah SWT for all the blessings that He has bestowed upon you. What others think of you is irrelevant but what Allah SWT thinks of you, is utmost important.
"But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah Knows, while you know not."
Last but not least, NEVER stop making dua to Allah SWT.
"Is He [not best] who responds to the desperate one when he calls upon Him"
"Al-Nu’maan ibn Basheer (RA) said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (SAW) say on the minbar: “Dua is worship.” Then he recited the verse (interpretation of the meaning): “And your Lord said: Invoke Me [i.e. believe in My Oneness (Islamic Monotheism) and ask Me for anything] I will respond to your (invocation)…”