Wednesday 7 January 2015

Word of the Year 2015 – Shukr

We don’t celebrate New Years in our home, except for the fireworks with the kids from their bedroom window and seeing if there is a good kids film on the TV on New Y ears Day at my mums. However the changing of the year is as good a time as any to reflect on how the previous 12 months passed and make intentions for the year ahead.

In recent years I have been picking a word for the year to motivate and guide me with some turning out more appropriate than others:

In 2011 my word was courage as I was keen to try new things and new directions in my life.

In 2012 I didn't pick a word but as I was expecting Darling that year and struggling to stay sane through a busy time at work and severe nausea, so in hindsight thought patience would have been a good one.

In 2013 the word was discipline - in my eating habits, spending and family routines – and how spectacularly bad I was at that one. I had promised myself when I turned 30 that I would be disciplined, particularly in my eating, so in 2013 at 34 I thought I had better keep my promise to myself. I think I will come back to this one and try much harder insh’Allah

In 2014 the word was focus – I had so many plans and felt so clear about how I would achieve them. But:

But they plan, and Allah plans. And Allah is the best of planners. ~ Quran 8:30

I found myself pregnant with Baby very soon after I chose that word and every plan went out the window, first because my body felt like it was breaking down under the pressure of a fifth pregnancy and then because my mind could barely keep up with the demands of five children and extended family. I have no idea what the word should have been - maybe acceptance would have been a good one.

My word for 2015 will be Shukr – gratefulness. I realise that we can’t do everything we want, our plans don’t always work out and sometimes the rug is pulled out from under us so hard that we have no idea whether we are coming or going. However in every situation, we can practise gratitude – for all that Allah (SWT) has blessed us with – the things we remember and those we don’t.

I hope to establish a daily practice of gratitude and through this I want to thoroughly take pleasure in the good things that He has bestowed us with – the small things, the everyday things. I want to enjoy the scent of nice soap and oils in my burner, the taste of fresh fruit and simple food, the colours of my garden, the sound of childish laughter and Gorgeous reciting his Quran lesson at the top of his lungs every evening and the feel of Darlings soft hair and chubby cheeks.

I know we are encouraged to think big, dream big, make big plans, but realistically I know that this year with the babies so little and the older children going through transitional stages, I have to set my focus on them and forget about big ambitions for now.

So with great pleasure, a shucking of anxiety, utter relief at not trying to achieve something and a deep breathing outwards my word for 2015 is shukr.

“So remember Me; I will remember you. And be grateful to Me and do not deny Me.” ~ Quran 2:152

“Why should Allah punish you if you have thanked (Him) and have believed in Him. And Allah is Ever All-Appreciative (of good), All-Knowing” ~ Quran 3:147

“And (remember) when your Lord proclaimed: ‘If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings); but if you are thankless, verily, My punishment is indeed severe’” ~ Quran 14:14

“And if you should count the favor of Allah, you could not enumerate them. Indeed, mankind is [generally] most unjust and ungrateful.” ~ Quran 14: 34

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: Look at those who stand at a lower level than you but don’t look at those who stand at a higher level than you, for this would make the favours (conferred upon you by Allah) insignificant (in your eyes). (Sahih Muslim, Book:42, Chapter: Kitab Al-Zuhd wa Al-Raqai’q, Hadith:7070)

There is no man who sees Allah’s favors upon him and says: “All praise is due to Allah with whose favours all good can be accomplished” except that Allah will make him needless of others and will increase His favours upon him.” - al-Hasan al-Basri

Gratitude helps us make the shift. Consequently, we are able to attract more good, more love, more joy, more money, as well as better health and blissful relationships in your life. Gratitude is one of the easiest and most frequently used methods to alter the signals one is emitting. What we need to master is the attitude of gratitude – the attitude of appreciating everything in life. - Bela Khan for Productive Muslim (Source)

Being grateful to Allah (SWT) does wonders. When you acknowledge His Hand in your life, miracles happen. You may be in the middle of a problem and not have the least bit of knowledge about what would happen next, then suddenly the solution will dawn upon you. It is like when someone would return you an old loan that you completely forgot about, when you are in dire need of money; or when you are thinking about your loved ones and they give you a call right then. And when something you are longing to happen, finally happens.- Bela Khan for Productive Muslim (Source)


  1. MashAllah such a refreshing post to read. This is such a great concept. It gets very easy to complain and compare when we have so much to be thankful for. JazakAllah khairan.

  2. MashaAllah! Your words are very inspiring sister. I personally don't give any importance to new years on Gregorian calender but your new year "resolutions" sound very encouraging for a Muslim.

  3. Salaam sister. Wonderful thoughts Mashallah. I think my word would be "sacrifice" . Always has been, always is and always will be. I wish it could change to "happy"

  4. in the Name of Allah the Most Gracious the Most Merciful

    as-salamu alaikum sister from the Philippines and Saudi Arabia :)

  5. this is not my first time reading your blog. I have actually been reading many of your blog entries for a long time now, not sure since when, and mashaAllah I say I enjoy reading your blog posts where you share some of your Islamic knowledge :)

    just wondering, sister, are you Sunni? I'm guessing you are a Salafi living in the UK? what is your opinion regarding Sunnis or as some may call us Wahhabis? in reality we are not 'Wahhabi' we are just Muslims who follow the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad sallAllahu 'alaihi wa sallam, and brother AbdulWahhab from what I understand is one of those brothers who revived the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad sallAllahu 'alaihi wa sallam during that time when many Bid'ahs were widespread. Allah knows best. "Wahhabi" is just a term that some people make to mean a Sunni Muslim I believe. anyway, Alhamdulillah and mashaAllah we are all Muslims and should in fact be united as we all believe in the One and Only God Allah and His beloved Messenger Muhammad sallAllahu 'alaihi wa sallam :)

    sister, do you have an account on facebook? as for me I have deleted mine's several months ago and am not sure if I might sign up for another account. only Allah knows best :)


    1. Walaikam-assalam Sister,
      thank you for taking the time to read my blog and to comment. My family follow a hanafi madhab and are a mix of sufi, salafi and deobandi/followers of jamat. I am accepting of them all because I can see from close up the struggle of each one to find his or her path to Allah (SWT) in their own way. I agree that Muslims should be united regardless of their different madhabs insh'Allah.

      My facebook page is here:

      I can't blame you for leaving FB as here is stuff on there that I have found really offensive to Islam and when I have reported it, FB has said it doesn't break their policy, which is pretty bad.

      I think maybe Ummaland is a good alternative, I have a page there, but need to make more effort to update it.

      You are welcome to follow the blog via e-mail (see the sidebar) or bloglovin here:

  6. Masha Allah, very very nice blog. jazakallah :)