“O Messenger of Allah! I want to go out and fight (in Jihad) and I have to ask your advice.” He said: “Do you have a mother?” He said: “Yes.” He said: “Then stay with her, for Paradise is beneath her feet.” [Sunan an-Nasa’i]
From the moment we first come to know that we are in sha Allah going to welcome a new life in this dunya to the moment we last close our eyes, the journey is a roller coaster full of laughter, tears and moments of undulated joy.
In sha Allah, this series is aimed at seeing how we women can become Productive Mothers by attending to the needs of our baby whilst preparing for our Akhirah and staying on course during the times when our morale hits a low.
Let’s begin at the beginning… Continue reading
Ask yourself this: if you’ve ever made a to-do list with priorities on it (for example, A, B and C priorities), did you manage to get to the ‘C’ listed items before more ‘A’ grade opportunities or potential disasters presented themselves?
Of course you didn’t.
And if you did get to those ‘C’ listed items, chances are you got to them because they suddenly started to rise up the ranks, becoming the more urgent ‘A’ and ‘B’ items because they were previously left unattended.
The problem is, a standard to-do list just isn’t enough to give us the agility to manage the various levels of complexity we encounter in our knowledge work – from immediate actions through to those things we could be doing, through to the wider, project-level tasks. Continue reading
Working part-time can make you the envy of your friends. You get to work flexible hours and spend more time at home and with your family. You get to do things on a weekday that most could never dream of, right?
Wrong! The truth is that working part-time can make you more stressed out and possibly feeling more overworked than a full-time worker.
Integrating part-time work and other responsibilities is one of the biggest hurdles faced by part-timers. Shifting from one role to the next takes some doing.
In the book: Work and Life Integration: Organizational, Cultural, and Individual Perspectives, Kossek and Lambert claim that to make part-time employment and role integration work for you, a mental shift is required, both by you and those around you, and in some cases even your employer. It is therefore necessary that you address the space and time that you need to work efficiently in each role so that you can fulfill your obligations. Continue reading
A Productivity Ninja is not a superhero. None of us have superhero brains, either. We also know – usually from our own painful experience – that we’re all too capable of forgetting important things, making bad decisions because we’re swamped with other things to think about or just not finding the time to focus on the important stuff. It’s time to change all that.
We’re going to use the CORD model and the Organise and Review habits in particular here to develop a ‘second brain’. Your second brain is designed to replace your real brain when it comes to memory (our woeful short-term memory is a major driver of stress and unproductive behaviour). Your second brain is also designed to support the good decision-making – intelligence and intuition – that our real brain is really good at already, but which we perhaps aren’t currently using to its full potential or aren’t as able to do unless we’re in periods of proactive attention.
What Does a Second Brain Look Like?
The second brain is, of course, a metaphor! I’m not going to ask you to go out and kill someone and put their brain in a jar. The second brain is made up of the following basic elements: Continue reading
Major Time Management Considerations
As alluded to already, one may have to adjust one’s sleep pattern. The Sunnah of sleeping after Zuhr (qaylula), is practised by many to help them re-energise. For workers fasting, the time immediately upon arriving home is ideal. Sleep can also stave off hunger. Just remember to make an intention before flopping down in exhaustion!
An oft-neglected Sunnah is to talk less after Isha and to sleep early. After a whole day of fasting and the long rakahs of Tarawih, most of us are pretty tired and so should be able to take advantage of this practice. Consequently, one should have more energy in the day. Continue reading