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Help me change

I been going through different things in life the past years. My confidents issue, my anxiety, the panic attack that I get sometimes being around people which makes me start acting wired and it make my heart sad  and think to myself why can I not be like those other girls act normal with confidents or have the friends they have.  Sometimes it bothers and hurts me to see some good people don’t want to be my friend. So I wonder sometimes is it because I am not good enough to be their friend? or maybe boring? or maybe because I act awkward?

Another thing that I struggle with is my improvement. I am just in need of huge change/ improve in my manners, just improve me. Also how bad I want to read books.. every time I hold a book I read like a page or two and never go back the next day to finish reading. I have the best books that I really want to read, but I am discouraged in so many ways. I want to be encouraged to increase in knowledge…

I finally made time to register and write some of my struggles. I trust this website. I am expecting without any doubt to get the help Im in need for. I am excited to take this step I know this will encourage me to change and to achieve what I need. Thank you all in advance. Thank you to those who came up with the website. You have helped many people.


Salaam,

I wanted to firstly point out that you are very brave to reach out to different people. It is not easy asking for help but remember this that Allah SWT has placed people with experience in the community and around the world so all could help each other out; so that we do not feel alone.

Anxiety and panic attacks can be very debilitating and stop us from enjoying life. I can understand that it is keeping you from interacting with other people and it also could possibly lead to depression as well. It is a vicious cycle. I would highly recommend that you seek out a Muslim counselor if possible. Working through anxiety and learning different coping skills with a counselor can prove very helpful. 

The thing about anxiety is that it starts from negative thoughts which lead us to feel a certain way and then we act negatively which causes us to stay anxious and worry constantly about things. But you have to understand that anxiety and other emotions are there for our survival as they enrich our life experiences. Anxiety in specific helps us to stay out of danger. My suggestion would be to begin journaling and writing things down that make you anxious during the day. This will help you identify triggers that cause your anxiety. Then you can start to work on changing and replacing negative thoughts with positive ones. Working through anxiety issues can be challenging that is why I recommended a Muslim counselor. 

When you start working on this, the improvements in yourself that you mentioned in your post will start to happen as well. 

I wish you all the best and I pray that Allah SWT resolves your issues.

Sincerely,
Your sister in Islam,
Fatima “U”

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As Salaam Alaikum, Dear Sister
First I’d like to commend you on taking this step and writing in to our site. InshaAllah I pray this site will bring you help and some ease in time.
I am so sorry for all the pain you are going through, and I hope I can provide some direction for you. I think it’s important to note – in addition to the advice you receive here, I highly suggest looking into a licensed professional in your area.
I firmly believe that Allah test those whom he loves and only with things that they can handle. You can handle this – you just need guidance through the clouds to see the light. I am very happy you reached out to us and hope you continue to – regardless of the issue. Remember you are not alone. Here are a few things you can try to help you:

New Friends: Seek friends and family members who will only help you stay on the path and keep your spirits high. Sometimes we grow apart from old friends, cousins and sometimes even siblings. It’s good to keep good relations with them, but perhaps this is the time for you seek out new friends. Try going to a Muslim Student Group mixer or join an ethnic group or activity group you feel comfortable with. Focus on developing quality relationships with people who share similar attitudes, interests and values with you.
{And keep yourself patient [by being] with those who call upon their Lord in the morning and the evening, seeking His countenance. And let not your eyes pass beyond them, desiring adornments of the worldly life, and do not obey one whose heart We have made heedless of Our remembrance and who follows his desire and whose affair is ever [in] neglect.} 18:28
“Ignore those that make you fearful and sad, that degrade you back towards disease and death” – Rumi

Salat: I know it’s tough to stay on the path, but read Quran in English, meditate, and pray. I also encourage you to read stories of the other prophets. Mediation can help ease your mind and bring you in the moment. While you pray you can focus on talking to Allah and opening up a relationship beyond the rituals. Take time during mediation and salat to reflect on your life and on the good.

Activities: Get involved in new activities like painting and outdoor activities. Being outdoors lends itself to mindfulness. Gardening, although sounds a little foreign, can bring a lot of peace to one’s thoughts. You are not only helping the environment but you are also able to be outdoors and in a peaceful stress-free environment. Consider doing community service or another activity that you enjoy. These situations present great opportunities to meet people and cultivate new friendships and social interactions.

Exercise: Improved self-esteem is a key psychological benefit of regular physical activity. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. For example, the feeling that follows a run or workout is often described as “euphoric.” That feeling, known as a “runner’s high,” can be accompanied by a positive and energizing outlook on life.

Expect the best. Try and let go of the fear of rejection, instead focus on positive thoughts and attitudes in your social relationships.

Somethings you can do while you are feeling the anxiety:

Breathing techniques: Calm yourself down by breathing. Deep breathing puts your body in a relaxation mode.
Distract yourself: Don’t let this be your only method of coping, but it can help in moderation. Try going for a walk, or writing down your thoughts and emotions.

Question your thoughts: When you get nervous or anxious, your brain can start playing tricks on you and can come up with some very unrealistic and outlandish.

Positive self talk: Anxiety can produce a lot of negative chatter. Tell yourself “positive coping statements, For instance, you might say, “this anxiety feels bad, but I can use strategies to manage it.”

Reading: I used to love to read when I was young and then I went through a major dry spell. I loved the idea of reading but could not for the life of me get myself through a book. Until one day I sat down with a book that was well-written and I related to so well and go through the book. It was so exhilarating! Since then I have been reading non-stop sometimes two books at a time. It’ll take time, but find something that you can relate to. It’ll happen with practise 🙂

Try these things, slowly ease into them and inshaAllah in time it will bring you some ease. Again, I strongly urge you to seek out help from a therapist in your area, and continue to reach out to us here. May Allah (swt) guide you and make it easier for you to see the light.

Sincerely,
Your sister in Islam
“Fatima X”

7 thoughts on “Help me change

  1. Hi Sweetheart,
    Want to know a secret? Well, it’s something that took me 30 years to learn…so i think it’s probably a well kept secret which i let out : Each and every single one of us struggles inside with who we are. Would you believe that’s what life is? We are all here trying to figure out why we can’t be who we want to be, or how to become who we want to be. It’s a journey – the reason we exist. Don’t beat yourself up when you look at someone and wondering “How come she/he is so confident? How can he/she be so perfect?”. Look past the show we all put up for one another…and you will see, each and every soul in this world is hurting or in trouble within.

    I remember reading a hadith “The greatest Jihad is to fight the struggle within”. If a hadith was based on our inner human struggle- it MUST be a very common struggle.

    1) Stop looking at others and wondering how they do what they do. I’ve found even the most well put together/presentable people are fighting some of the greatest struggles behind closed doors. It’s an absolute waste of energy to wonder how others do what they do.

    2) I wanted to hug you when you I read how you start a book and never go back to it the next day. It’s because I spend almost 15 years of my life beating myself up over why I can’t complete what I begin or why i always save homework, errands and important chores for the last minute. Then one fine day…i said to myself “I do all that, because that’s who i am. And that’s totally cool”. If not finishing a book is just not your thing, accept it and love yourself for it….you won’t do what your heart is not into. I think that’s amazing. Reading books isn’t my thing…i tried, i thought its the only way to learn…but then I discovered audio book, youtube, and conversation. When the time is right, you WILL find an alternative to increase your knowledge. Until then…relax 🙂

    3) Anxiety is for real a pesky issue…it bugs us so bad because we focus on it until it starts kicking in. We expect it out of ourselves. You’re in a social setting and you want to talk, but you feel weird…you really think you’re the only person that happens to? 8 out of 10 people in the room are in the same boat….some hide it behind makeup, some hide it behind loud laughter, some hide it behind senseless conversation. But you know what’s cool about you? You recognize it. And you don’t want it…so the next time you’re in a social setting and that awkward feeling kicks in …tell yourself “hey man, i bet half these people have similar or worse issues….lets just move on with this day!” Breathe. Smile. Stare at your nails if you want. This is your life…you will decide which way it goes. And I have a feeling you’re going to do a GREAT job living it up.

  2. Your sister in Islam

    Salam! As I was reading its as if I am looking in the mirror. You are NOT alone!

    I’m currently working things out myself, but it’s comforting to know we are in this together! I reached out to a cognitive behavioral therapist and just started taking meds 2 days ago. I’m trying not to be hard on myself and taking it day-by-day.

    The best advice I can give you is that it is OKAY to be selfish. Reach out to people and ask for help- I was afraid to, but put your trust in Allah (swt). He will use people as tools to help you get through this.

    You seem like such a sweet soul. I pray that you find happiness and fulfilling relationships because you deserve it.

  3. As Salaamu alaikum sister. I want to just say, YAY YOU!!! I’ve been there and can’t tell you how amazing it felt when I began to complete my books as well. Don’t give up, you’re not in this struggle alone. Two amazing books I would like to recommend are Don’t Be Sad and Gardens of the Righteous. I found when I read each of them and stopped, whenever I picked it up again it addressed me and whatever I was going through at that very moment. I was like WOW!! Allah is amazing. Now when I want to read something I keep it in whatever bag I’m carrying and while in riding the subway or bus I read a few pages. I too like the others have said am proud of you for reaching out. Keep us posted. It helps us to know we matter, just like hopefully you see you matter to us. And we’re all around the country. You are special.
    You sister in the book club.
    Purelight
    Ps don’t forget to share some of the books you’re reading as well. 😉

  4. Asalamo alaikum Sister,

    You did not mention your age. Anyway, I can still try to help you. Whenever you are around people, do zikr of Allah in your heart. This, should be done throughout the day and not just when you are around people. Learn the different dua’s that you are supposed to recite during different situations. There is small booklet called ” Fortress of the Muslim – Invocations from the Quran and Sunnah”. Read it.

    This will lessen your anxiety and increase your confidence, insha Allah. Do not worry if some people do not want to be your friend. Allah will give you better friends than them, insha Allah. Learn about the Seerah of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). If you don’t like reading books, you can find lot of videos about the manners of the Muhammad (pbuh) on Youtube. Then you can try to implement it in your life.

    The first verse of the Quran that was revealed was ” Read, in the name of your Lord “. Then it is said that we should ” seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave”. There is another saying that states , ” Seek knowledge even if you have to go to China”. At the time of Muhammad (pbuh), China was a very far place, as there were no cars and no aeroplanes. In other words, ” Seek knowledge even if you have to travel long distances to get it “. Recite the following dua, ” O Allah, increase me in knowledge ” ( Rabbi zidnee Ilmaa )

    I hope I have motivated you to read and gain knowledge.

    Sincerely,

    Br Yousuf

  5. I want to thank each and everyone of you for taking the time to comment! As I started reading tears came to my eyes! I will not let this go to waste I will push my self and start applying your advises starting NOW . I am ready for the change! Thank you all! Thank you thank you!!! Your post has honestly gave me so much motivation than I was expecting! I am surprised I don’t know how to thank you all

  6. As Salaam Alaikum, Dear Sister
    First I’d like to commend you on taking this step and writing in to our site. InshaAllah I pray this site will bring you help and some ease in time.
    I am so sorry for all the pain you are going through, and I hope I can provide some direction for you. I think it’s important to note – in addition to the advice you receive here, I highly suggest looking into a licensed professional in your area.
    I firmly believe that Allah test those whom he loves and only with things that they can handle. You can handle this – you just need guidance through the clouds to see the light. I am very happy you reached out to us and hope you continue to – regardless of the issue. Remember you are not alone. Here are a few things you can try to help you:

    New Friends: Seek friends and family members who will only help you stay on the path and keep your spirits high. Sometimes we grow apart from old friends, cousins and sometimes even siblings. It’s good to keep good relations with them, but perhaps this is the time for you seek out new friends. Try going to a Muslim Student Group mixer or join an ethnic group or activity group you feel comfortable with. Focus on developing quality relationships with people who share similar attitudes, interests and values with you.
    {And keep yourself patient [by being] with those who call upon their Lord in the morning and the evening, seeking His countenance. And let not your eyes pass beyond them, desiring adornments of the worldly life, and do not obey one whose heart We have made heedless of Our remembrance and who follows his desire and whose affair is ever [in] neglect.} 18:28
    “Ignore those that make you fearful and sad, that degrade you back towards disease and death” – Rumi

    Salat: I know it’s tough to stay on the path, but read Quran in English, meditate, and pray. I also encourage you to read stories of the other prophets. Mediation can help ease your mind and bring you in the moment. While you pray you can focus on talking to Allah and opening up a relationship beyond the rituals. Take time during mediation and salat to reflect on your life and on the good.

    Activities: Get involved in new activities like painting and outdoor activities. Being outdoors lends itself to mindfulness. Gardening, although sounds a little foreign, can bring a lot of peace to one’s thoughts. You are not only helping the environment but you are also able to be outdoors and in a peaceful stress-free environment. Consider doing community service or another activity that you enjoy. These situations present great opportunities to meet people and cultivate new friendships and social interactions.

    Exercise: Improved self-esteem is a key psychological benefit of regular physical activity. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. For example, the feeling that follows a run or workout is often described as “euphoric.” That feeling, known as a “runner’s high,” can be accompanied by a positive and energizing outlook on life.

    Expect the best. Try and let go of the fear of rejection, instead focus on positive thoughts and attitudes in your social relationships.

    Somethings you can do while you are feeling the anxiety:

    Breathing techniques: Calm yourself down by breathing. Deep breathing puts your body in a relaxation mode.
    Distract yourself: Don’t let this be your only method of coping, but it can help in moderation. Try going for a walk, or writing down your thoughts and emotions.

    Question your thoughts: When you get nervous or anxious, your brain can start playing tricks on you and can come up with some very unrealistic and outlandish.

    Positive self talk: Anxiety can produce a lot of negative chatter. Tell yourself “positive coping statements, For instance, you might say, “this anxiety feels bad, but I can use strategies to manage it.”

    Reading: I used to love to read when I was young and then I went through a major dry spell. I loved the idea of reading but could not for the life of me get myself through a book. Until one day I sat down with a book that was well-written and I related to so well and go through the book. It was so exhilarating! Since then I have been reading non-stop sometimes two books at a time. It’ll take time, but find something that you can relate to. It’ll happen with practise 🙂

    Try these things, slowly ease into them and inshaAllah in time it will bring you some ease. Again, I strongly urge you to seek out help from a therapist in your area, and continue to reach out to us here. May Allah (swt) guide you and make it easier for you to see the light.

    Sincerely,
    Your sister in Islam
    “Fatima X”

  7. qalb healer_25

    Salam sister! I would like to commend you for being so brave in reaching out to this website.I think it would be helpful to start taking notice of what triggers your anxiety like the fatima by journaling every day. You expressed your desire to improve and i think this will help. Seeking professional help from a counselor and confiding in them about what set you off will help them pinpoint issues you can work on. As for friends, don’t feel bad if some people turn you down. They are probably not the people you want to be friends with anyway. You could join a book club or get involved at your local library since you’re fond of books, and meet new people there. Although, it might make you a little anxious, I think it will be a good stepping stone to building your bridge. The library is a quiet, cozy, comfortable, and safe place for you to grow in. It can be a haven where you can read books and connect to people. Inshallah, Allah will guide you to grow comfortable in yourself. Wishing you all the best with dua.