“…You (O Muslims) have been sent to make (life) easy, and you have not been sent to make (life) hard.” (The Prophet Muhammad, pbuh, recorded in Bukhari and others)

This beautiful hadith teaches us that we should not make religion or life too difficult for ourselves.

With all of life’s challenges, it’s crucial to take care of yourself. The first step is to be aware of yourself when you are starting to feel overwhelmed. Ignoring your feelings can create bigger problems; therefore at the first sign of feeling stressed, it’s important to find ways to relax.

Allah (swt) shows us that He cares for our wellbeing, reminding us that He does not want our lives to be too hard:

“…Allah does not want to place you in difficulty, but He wants to purify you and to perfect His grace upon you that you may give thanks.” (Quran 5:6)

“God wishes for you convenience, not hardship, that you may fulfill your obligations, and glorify God for guiding you, and express your appreciation.” (Quran 2:185)

You may also like: 6 Ahadith on Tqawa!

Here are some tips to take care of yourself:

  1. Be aware of your inner world as well as your outer world. If your outer world is not going well, then you need to start taking care of yourself before things become worse. Remember:

“Surely Allah does not change the conditions in which a people are in until they change that which is in themselves.” (Quran 13:11)

  1. Reduce Stress. If something is causing you stress, you must do something about this. Can you reduce your commitments and activities? Can you take a mini-vacation to a local place? Can you talk to a caring person? For me, exercise and a cup of tea are great stress reducers. Did you know that stress can cause all kinds of physical health problems? You have to find ways to reduce stress.

Ayesha (RA) said: If there were two alternatives, the Holy Prophet used to adopt the easiest, provided there was no sin in it… (Bukhari)

  1. Train yourself to stay calm, no matter what. This is easier said than done, but trust me, when you calm down, you will find solutions to your problems more easily.

A man said to the Prophet , “Advise me!” The Prophet said, “Do not become angry and furious.” The man asked (the same) again and again, and the Prophet said in each case, “Do not become angry and furious.” (Bukhari)

  1. Remember the two states of the Believer: Patience and Gratitude. Be patient when life is difficult. Look for things to be grateful to Allah (swt) for. Even little things can bring out your feelings of gratitude.

“How excellent the affairs of the believer: his affair, all of it, is good for him; and this is not the case with anyone except the believer; if prosperity comes to him, he is thankful (to God), and if adversity falls on him, he perseveres patiently: so it is all good (for him).” (Muslim)

  1. Problem-solve! Think of solutions to your problems (first clearly understand what your problems are). You will feel empowered!

“The strong believer is better and more beloved to Allah than the weak believer, although both are good. Strive for that which will benefit you, seek the help of Allah, and do not feel helpless..” (Sahih Ibn Majah)

  1. Watch what you eat. Do you know that food can have a powerful effect on your emotions? Try to pay attention to how certain foods make you feel. Raw veggies and fruits are best!

“A human being fills no worse vessel than his stomach. It is sufficient for a human being to eat a few mouthfuls to keep his spine straight. But if he must (fill it), then one third of food, one third for drink and one third for air.” (Sahih Ibn Majah)

  1. Be Patient with your Limitations. We are not superheroes. Also, we are all different. Even though one person may seem to “do it all”, that does not mean that you can do the same. Learn to listen to your inner compass and to accept the fact that you do have limits.  

“Religion is very easy and whoever overburdens himself in his religion will not be able to continue that way…” (Bukhari)

  1. Finally, accept the fact that life is stressful sometimes! That’s life! And we are not always going to feel good and peaceful inside. Accepting this fact will actually help you to feel more peaceful within, insha’Allah.

And most certainly shall We try you by means of danger, and hunger, and loss of worldly goods, of lives and of [labor’s] fruits. But give glad tidings unto those who are patient in adversity – who, when calamity befalls them, say, “Verily, unto God do we belong and, verily, unto Him we shall return.” It is they upon whom their Sustainer’s blessings and grace are bestowed. (Quran, 2:155-157)

Islam encourages us to do good to others, but remember, you are a person too! Take care of yourself so that you can do more good deeds in the long-run, insha’Allah.

Related Video: 4 Ways To Love Yourself & Its Benefits

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