Sadness is an emotion that often creeps up in everyone’s life at some point but when it begins to become constant, longer lasting, hopefully these three things can help to overcome it with time and the permission of Allah.
The first step is controlling your thoughts and focus.
When we focus on something, we prolong the amount of attention that thing gets which inevitably increases the body’s response to it. So from that the physical symptoms begin to worsen. That crippling feeling that has you in bed all day and has you confined and unable to move or be productive.
So how do I control my thoughts I here you ask; action! Action is how you control your thoughts. When we take a physical action, our body chemistry changes. Hormones shift, concentrations shifts leading to a shift in focus.
We all know this already, it’s just a case of bring it to our attention. If you study the behaviour of people when there are stressed, you will find that they often either cripple in their sadness, or they occupy themselves with something else just so that they can get away from thinking or facing the problem. It’s called fight or flight response. Now both responses have the potential to be the right or wrong response but it all depends on the situation at hand.
So in the case thoughts that cause you sadness, take an action that diverts your mind away from the thinking about that particular thing that is causing you to feel sad. I know, it’s hard, not that simple, you just don’t even feel like you have the energy to get up. But you can, one step at a time, get up, get moving, get out of the house and start living. Remember why you are here. To serve Allah, so pray and whilst you are at it, make this dua
- It was reported from Anas (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (Peace and Blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to say when something upset him:
“Yaa Hayyu yaa Qayyoom, bi Rahmatika astagheeth (O Ever-Living One, O Everlasting One, by Your mercy I seek help).”
- It was reported that Asmaa’ bint ‘Umays (may Allaah be pleased with her) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to me:
“Shall I not teach you some words to say when you feel distressed, Depression and Worries ?
اللهُ اللهُ رَبِّ لا أُشْـرِكُ بِهِ شَيْـئاً
‘Allaah, Allaah, Rabbee laa ushriku bihi shay’an’
Allaah, Allaah, my Lord, I do not associate anything with Him (Abu Dawud 2/87. See also Al-Albani, Sahih Ibn Majah 2/335.)
It was reported from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Mas’ood that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “No person suffers any anxiety or grief, and says:
للّهُـمَّ إِنِّي عَبْـدُكَ ابْنُ عَبْـدِكَ ابْنُ أَمَتِـكَ نَاصِيَتِي بِيَـدِكَ، مَاضٍ فِيَّ حُكْمُكَ، عَدْلٌ فِيَّ قَضَاؤكَ أَسْأَلُـكَ بِكُلِّ اسْمٍ هُوَ لَكَ سَمَّـيْتَ بِهِ نَفْسَكَ أِوْ أَنْزَلْتَـهُ فِي كِتَابِكَ، أَوْ عَلَّمْـتَهُ أَحَداً مِنْ خَلْقِـكَ أَوِ اسْتَـأْثَرْتَ بِهِ فِي عِلْمِ الغَيْـبِ عِنْـدَكَ أَنْ تَجْـعَلَ القُرْآنَ رَبِيـعَ قَلْبِـي، وَنورَ صَـدْرِي وجَلَاءَ حُـزْنِي وذَهَابَ هَمِّـي
‘Allaahumma innee ‘abduka wa ibn ‘abdika wa ibn amatika, naasiyati bi yadika, maadin fiyya hukmuka, ‘adlun fiyya qadaa’uka, as’aluka bi kulli ismin huwa laka sammayta bihi nafsaka aw anzaltahu fi kitaabika aw ‘allamtahu ahadan min khalqika aw ista’tharta bihi fi ‘ilm il-ghaybi ‘andak an taj’ala al-Qur’aana rabee’ qalbi wa noor sadri wa jalaa’a huzni wa dhahaaba hammi’
“O Allaah, I am Your slave, son of Your slave, son of Your female slave, my forelock is in Your hand, Your command over me is forever executed and Your decree over me is just. I ask You by every Name belonging to You which You named Yourself with, or revealed in Your Book, or You taught to any of Your creation, or You have preserved in the knowledge of the unseen with You, that You make the Qur’aan the life of my heart and the light of my breast, and a departure for my sorrow and a release for my anxiety”
but Allaah will take away his sorrow and grief, and give him in their stead joy.” (Ahmad 1/391)
Then read some verses of the Quran because Allah says that “verily, in the remembrance of Allah does the heart find rest” and Allah never fails in his promise.
Over time, you will begin to feel better, some days may be worse than others but God willing, you will get there.
Having said all of this, I want to make it clear that sadness is perfectly normal. It’s not something to feel ashamed of, or something to shut down immediately and avoid at all cost because, like all of our other emotions, Allah created us with the ability to feel sad so give yourself the permission to cry when you feel like crying and don’t let anyone make you feel weak or worthless because of that. When the prophet (pbuh) got the news of losing his grandchild, tears fell from his eyes as he cried but said “the heart feels sadness but the tongue will not utter except that which pleases Allah“.
So, when you are done crying, wipe those tears, keep it moving and remember that Allah had your back.