I have been reading a book called Time Travels in my Worlds, by Summayyah Sadiq-Ojibara, and it mentioned that we tend to be caught up in the “What” and “Who” that we never get to the “Why” and “How”. This really had me thinking about our problem-solving skills as an ummah especially with our families.
Are we too busy playing the blame game and not using any constructive means to solve the clear dilemma the community is facing?. Are we concentrating on who did what when we really should be analysing why this is happening and how to make it better?
When I asked myself this question I found I too fall into this trap and so do many of the people I know. Especially with couples, how many times do we worry about what they are doing and not finding a minute to work out why they are doing it and how we meet in the middle.
I remember watching a clip called “the nail in the head” where a couple are arguing. The woman is telling her husband about his splitting headache she gets while the husband is trying to explain to her that is clearly because she had a nail in her forehead.
He could clearly see the nail, but she kept on asking him not to give her solutions and just listen while she explains that her headache is caused by the stress in their relationship. Watching the clip, I was frustrated for the husband, who clearly saw exactly what was wrong but chose to listen and see things from her end.
Sometimes we don’t see that the person in front of us cannot see our point of view even if it is obvious. We are too busy concentrating that “she has a nail in her head” that we forget to think “how will I get her to see she has a nail on her head”.
Now I understand it is frustrating however think how many people would be happy if we all concentrated on why we behave the way we do. Some people are raised with insecurities or negative images about themselves which make them behave in a certain way, knowing that fact can reduce our angry reaction towards their actions because now we know the “why”.
With that in mind, things are not taking as personally, and you begin to find ways of “how” to communicate in a way to get the desired outcome.
Imaging with me if this month only, we try and use this strategy with our spouses? Just for this week? When something silly happens from their side, take a breath and do not think of who or what happened, instead why did it happen and how can I make it better.
I look forward to hearing your responses on the online comments.
May Allah help us reach the form of a human being He is pleased with.