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Mind - Body unison (Stay Focussed, Develop Concentration)

Mind - Body unison (Stay Focussed, Develop Concentration)Every human being has the desire to be successful but very few achieve what they want to achieve. Why is that so many of them struggle to do what they want to? A student wants to study but struggles to study. A corporate executive wants to achieve excellence in his profession but ends up as an average performer. An architect wants to be a great designer but fails, despite having practiced for years. The main reason for all these failures is mind-body discord.

For most people, the mind and the body are never in balance. A friend once told me that he had taken bath twice that day. When I asked him why, he told me that when he had finished taking bath the first time, he wasn't sure whether he had applied soap or not. So, he went back to the bathroom to take bath once again. What had happened? When my friend took bath for the first time, his body was taking bath but his mind was somewhere else. That's why he couldn't remember whether he has applied soap or not. I used to go through similar experience as well. I remember till a couple of years ago, after having locked my house and come out of the apartment, I would go back to check whether I had actually locked the door or not. Needless to say, when my hands were locking the door my mind was somewhere else. That's why my mind never registered whether I had locked my house or not. Today when I lock the door, my body is involved in locking the door and so is my mind. I don't have to go back to check if I have locked the door or not. When both your body and mind are involved in the same activity, you attain mind-body unison.

When a student sits in the morning to study, his mother may look at her son studying and thinking, "Wow! My son is studying so sincerely." Now, this student may have his eyes on the book but his mind is on the cricket that he is going to play after two hours. So, this student sits with the book for two hours and keeps thinking about cricket. At the end of two hours, nothing has entered his brains. Finally, the student goes out to play. Now when the student is playing cricket, he keeps feeling guilty for not having studied properly. He keeps worrying about what he will write in the next day's examination. Finally, he leaves the play ground frustrated at not having played well. If we look at both the activities of this student - that is studying and playing cricket, he failed to live up to his own expectations in both because of mind-body discord. Whenever the body and mind are going in different directions, you will only experience mediocrity and failure.

When you study, study - don't think about cricket. When you play cricket, play cricket - don't think about exams. When you want to draft a letter, draft the letter - don't think about your wife. When you want to listen to a customer of yours, listen - don't think about the party you have planned for the night. When you are having food, have food - don't think about your bank balance.

Whenever you want to do an important task, you must first cut off all your other thoughts. Bring your mind and body into unison for the task at hand. Give your 100% to that task. If you can do that for every important task that you perform, you will definitely achieve excellence. Your will succeed beyond your own expectations, and your family and friends will look up to you with a twinkle of happiness in their eyes.

An Elephant and A small Fly (Stay Focussed)

An Elephant and A small Fly (Stay Focussed)A disciple and his teacher were walking through the forest. The disciple was disturbed by the fact that his mind was in constant unrest.

He asked his teacher: "Why most people's minds are restless, and only a few possess a calm mind? What can one do to still the mind?"

The teacher looked at the disciple, smiled and said: "I will tell you a story. An elephant was standing and picking leaves from a tree. A small fly came, flying and buzzing near his ear. The elephant waved it away with his long ears. Then the fly came again, and the elephant waved it away once more."

This was repeated several times. Then the elephant asked the fly: "Why are you so restless and noisy? Why can't you stay for a while in one place?"

The fly answered: "I am attracted to whatever I see, hear or smell. My five senses pull me constantly in all directions and I cannot resist them. What is your secret? How can you stay so calm and still?"

The elephant stopped eating and said: "My five senses do not rule my attention. Whatever I do my work, I get immersed in it. Now that I am eating, I am completely immersed in eating. In this way I can enjoy my food and chew it better. I rule and control my attention, and not the other way around."

On hearing these words, the disciple's eyes opened wide and a smile appeared on his face. He looked at his teacher and said: "I understand! If my five senses are in control of my mind and attention, then my mind is in constant unrest. On the other hand, if I am in charge of my five senses and attention, then my mind becomes calm." Yes, that's right, answered the teacher.

The Moral of the Story: The mind is restless and goes wherever the attention is. Control your attention, and you can control your mind.

Feeling Overwhelmed? (Develop Concentration)

Feeling Overwhelmed? (Develop Concentration)Have you ever found yourself walking into the room and can't find your keys? Or forgetting why you entered the room in the first place? Then you begin wondering what has happened to your short-term memory? Do you end up feeling overwhelmed by information, people, to-do lists and demands on your time that our brains simply close down?

It's a phenomenon of our time. Our brains, created to respond to our environment and each other, are exponentially being taxed by the growth in information and technology.

Everyone and everything is competing for your attention. We want to respond but when it's overflowing like that, the brain just "goes blind". Engineers discovered this phenomenon when they installed hundreds of communication devices in cockpits, thinking it would improve the pilot's performance. Instead, the pilot's performance obviously decreased.

Information and technology will not go away. But there are ways to deal with this, here are some:

1. Determine your priorities and focus on them.

Don't let yourself be pulled into anything from meetings, to readings, to conversations that obstruct your priorities. Literally block out space on your daily to-do list for things that are important to you: from projects, to exercise, to family time. Ensure to stick to these times, without fail.

2. Say "no" to answering every message.

The average individual receives around 70 phone, paper, and e-mail messages a day. Take care of those that are priority and let the rest drop off. Ignore the messages that are uninvited and unnecessary.

3. Let technology work for you in prioritizing.

Screen your calls. For those who depend upon business coming in via phone and need to take every call, develop a way to shorten incoming calls. Have templates that you can use to send repetitive emails and messages, so that you do not have to re-type them each time.

4. Create a centering place.

Whether it is in the silence of your car, or in your office, or closing your door, take 15 minutes per day to practice paying attention to ONE thing: your breathing, a flower, a fish tank. Just like the muscle in our bodies, the brain gets strong in the places where we train it. Train it to maintain focus!

Picture of Peace (Stay Focussed and Development of Concentration)

Picture of Peace (Stay Focussed and Development of Concentration)There once was a King who offered a prize to the artist who would paint the best picture of peace. Many artists tried. The King looked at all the pictures, but there were only two he really liked and he had to choose between them.

One picture was of a calm lake. The lake was a perfect mirror, for peaceful towering mountains were all around it. Overhead was a blue sky with fluffy white clouds. All who saw this picture thought that it was a perfect picture of peace.

The other picture had mountains, too. But these were rugged and bare. Above was an angry sky from which rain fell and in which lightening played. Down the side of the mountain tumbled a foaming waterfall. This did not look peaceful at all. But when the King looked, he saw behind the waterfall a tiny bush growing in a crack in the rock. In the bush a mother bird had built her nest. There, in the midst of the rush of angry water, sat the mother bird on her nest, perfect peace.

Which picture do you think won the prize?

The King chose the second picture. Do you know why?

Because, as explained by the King: "Peace does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. Peace means to be in the midst of all those things and still be calm in your heart. That is the real meaning of peace."

The Moral of the Story: Realize that true happiness lies within you. Waste no time and effort searching for peace, contentment and joy in the world outside.

Allah (SWT) says in Noble Qur'an: "Those who believe and whose hearts find satisfaction in the remembrance of Allah: for without doubt in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find satisfaction." (Surah al-Rad 13:28)

The Cricket (Leaping Insect), Improving Your Concentration

The Cricket (Leaping Insect), Improving Your ConcentrationA man and his friend were in a city, walking through the street. It was during the noon lunch hour and the streets were filled with people. Cars were honking their horns, taxicabs were squealing around corners, sirens were wailing, and the sounds of the city were almost deafening. Suddenly, the man said to his friend, "I hear a cricket."

His friend said, "What? You must be crazy. You couldn't possibly hear a cricket in all of this noise!"

"No, I'm sure of it," the man said, "I heard a cricket."

"That's crazy," said the friend.

The man listened carefully for a moment and then walked across the street to a big cement planter where some shrubs were growing. He looked into the bushes, beneath the branches, and sure enough, he located a small cricket. His friend was utterly amazed.

"That's incredible," said his friend. "You must have super-human ears!"

"No," said the man. "My ears are no different from yours. It all depends on what you're listening for."

"But that can't be!" said the friend. "I could never hear a cricket in this noise."

"Yes, it's true," came the reply. "It depends on what is really important to you. Here, let me show you."

He reached into his pocket, pulled out a few coins and discreetly dropped them on the sidewalk. And then, with the noise of the crowded street still blaring in their ears, they noticed every head within twenty feet turn and look to see if the money that tinkled on the pavement was theirs.

"See what I mean?" asked the man.

"It all depends on what's important to you."

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Islamic Moral Stories is designed by Akramulla Syed Last Updated: Thursday, November 17, 2016