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HOW TO HANDLE BURDENS

We all have stress and burdens in our daily lives. Whether it is school or work or just the trials of life, we carry much on our shoulders. Some of us carry our own loads and some of us carry loads that we share with others, such as health problems, personal family issues, financial dilemmas, marital discord, employment troubles, and the list could go on. These burdens that we bear can be heavy. In fact, most of us may say that at one time or another, these burdens are too hard to bear.

However, Allah the Almighty promises us that we will never have to carry a burden that is greater than what we can bear. Allah Says (what means) {Allah does not charge a soul except [with that within] its capacity. It will have [the consequence of] what [good] it has gained, and it will bear [the consequence of] what [evil] it has earned.} [Quran 2:286] So why do we feel then that the burden is too heavy for us to carry? Why do we feel as if we had the weight of the entire world on our shoulders and as if we had more than our share of worries and woes?

We feel this way not because of the weight of the burden, but rather the way we carry it.

BEND AT THE KNEES

When we physically carry heavy loads in our arms, we are always told to `bend at the knees' to avoid breaking our backs and injuring our necks. There is great wisdom in ensuring that something is sincerely done in our own best interest, and not just done as a task that we want to get rid of. Likewise, a burden that is carried with little or no care or concern for our own well-being does not make much sense. In a short amount of time, one would `burn out' and be of much less use to the same people that we were intending to help in the first place. So, a burden carried on our shoulders should be carried with care as well, otherwise it could similarly become a `pain in the neck'. In other words, a burden on its own is not such a pain but a mere responsibility; but a burden that is not carried well becomes a pain, a hassle that one harbors reluctantly.

No matter how heavy our burden is, if we carry it with confidence and self respect, we can handle the weight of it and carry it to fruition or to the point that it needs to be carried.

Sometimes, this weight that we carry is for a short period and sometimes it is for a long period; whatever the duration, our attitude determines in large part the outcome. The way that we handle any situation determines how that situation can end. Think about many of the burdens that you may have in your life at this very moment. The way you see them can have a huge impact on the way they affect your life. If you think they are enormous, then you tend to visualize them as such.

If you imagine that it is the end of the world, you would probably feel as if the world was about to come crashing down on you.

Instead, if we can remember at times like this that there is no such thing as a burden too great, we can take a deep breath and remind ourselves that we can handle it. We have to remember that Allah Almighty Knows what we can handle. After all, He Almighty created us and thus Knows better than anyone else what we can and cannot handle.

PULLING OUR OWN WEIGHT

In remembering this, it would be better for us to handle our responsibilities not with complaints and grouchiness but with self-restraint and grace. The burdens placed on our shoulders should not weigh us down to the point of immobility. Instead, we can think of them as challenges that we can learn to face and overcome. The reality is that, no matter how bad the situation is, there is always someone out there whose situation is harder than ours. Maybe we can't see that person when we need to, but we need to know that this reality exists and that our own burdens are meant for us. The burden of other people could be much worse.

All of the burdens that we have are a test from Allah Almighty—we know that already. Not only the burdens but the favors and blessings also a trail as Prophet Suleiman (Solomon), may Allah exalt his mention, said and that Allah the Almighty quoted in the Quran. Allah Says {what means: "This is from the favor of my Lord to test me whether I will be grateful or ungrateful} [Quran 27:40] However, what we sometimes forget is how to handle those burdens. Usually, we complain about everything that is ‘going wrong’ in our lives. If we can change our perspective and balance those burdens with a stronger back and with a more positive attitude, we will see that the burden is not as heavy as the reward for being grateful for those things that we have in our lives that are going well.

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