How the ‘powerful weekly plan’ happened

 

The last blog on Powerful weekly plan.  received a good response. Yes, I’ve used the weekly plan for many years, especially it took me through tough times. I found it extremely effective.

You must be wondering how I got to it? Well, actually it’s an amalgamation of several theories, and then making some adaptations to make a good fit for today’s life style. Having lived through a time when you either bought a book or went to the library for any solution of problem. You all have had it much easier today. Still, the problems of managing one’s week is even more vital now, so you can satisfy all your needs from every important point of view.

I’m a big reader, and  while reading  I  try to incorporate the stuff into my life. Whatever clicks. Anything that makes sense. Then I give it a little time, analyze it and make amendments. So, those of you who have read the Stephen R. Covey’s block buster book 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, you would remember the ‘weekly plan’ in it.

51S1IFlzLcL._AC_US218_

619ugw6C46L._AC_US218_So, I tried it. But then I realized, it is literally impossible in Pakistan. Hardly anything is streamlined here, if you are well organized, then no one else is, so really, it doesn’t work. But then even when it does work, there are issues in applying it in our country. Here, we do not put our parents in homes, nor do we put our children in day care. So, we take those responsibilities very seriously too. So, when he wrote about the roles in life, that really clicked.

Continue reading “How the ‘powerful weekly plan’ happened”

Advertisements

Powerful weekly plan.

20155730_1614982778535008_3418635398423058925_n

The weekend is here, you have a lot on your plate, and here is another blog from me! Well, I’m going to let you into something that is part of my ‘time management’ or ‘self-management’ strategies.  I’ve met people who have been successful in their careers who regretted not giving enough time to their families. You know how much Steve Jobs regretted that. I’ve met others (mostly women,) who gave so much of their time to their families that there was no time left to pursue their own interests. Here is a way to put both together, so that you can have both! It is only possible if you can start it all within the week which is one’s most powerful unit of time.

Continue reading “Powerful weekly plan.”

Dealing with too much ‘to do’

 

(…. you too?)

19989705_1611026148930671_3309340985028269839_n[2]

How do we cope with daily challenges in life? – Of course with our ‘to do’ list!

My mentor Mahjabeen says “You cannot do anything unless you allocate a time and place for it.” Then she adds, “Even if one of them is missing, it will not get done!” That being clear, let’s get on with it….

I’ve seen two types of people:

  1. Those who keep the list short and sweet not allowing anyone to walk into it.
  2. Then there are those making loooonnnnngggg ‘to do’ lists, and allowing everyone to walk into it.

Yes, as you guessed, I’m the second one! But you know, usually I love it. Otherwise, I have an ‘engine burn out’. I know, I’ll miss out on doing some things, but due to ‘priority’ I’ll have the important stuff done.

Hence, I’m always busy. So what? Excuse me, we’ll get plenty of time to rest – when we are ‘resting in peace’. This is our time  to ‘work in peace’.

Continue reading “Dealing with too much ‘to do’”

Shireen Studio’s first book is published! – Now what?

 My friend tells me, “Now the real work starts!”
19990050_1607365219296764_4035318751426495943_n

The most EXCITING thing in my life is the printing of my first publication: yes, Allama Iqbal’s Tulip of Sinai, illustrated and published by Shireen Gheba Najib.  It contains the first two poems from Iqbal’s Persian book ‘Message from the East’ (Payam-e-Mash19420503_1583480358351917_8946659070308652962_nriq).

Don’t get scared, its easy reading in English. You will find that your heart will skip a beat several times as you go through it, as mine did. There is that ‘eureka’ moment, when you say, “Hey, that’s what I feel too!”

Imagine, Iqbal published this work when he was 46 years old. The work was obviously done in the preceding years – most probably during the later thirties and early forties.

I’m so excited, because Muhammad Qasim of Printo Graphics, did a great job of it. The quality of printing is just as I wanted.

19959329_1607302402636379_9021792526937283506_n

All the time, people were telling me “you are being rooked!” I’d reply,

Continue reading “Shireen Studio’s first book is published! – Now what?”

Fantastic birthday ideas

My daughter Waliya and I share the same birthday. So, we have a blast together, all thanks to our family and friends.  Its always been this way, but this year’s birthday really took the cake!

19424062_1581801505186469_8524370787832836818_n

 

19396671_1581814531851833_2732033630652598514_n19437512_1581803171852969_2629185007341079053_n

May I say I had one of the happiest birthdays of my life – that’s saying a lot – because I’ve had some fantabulous birthdays! This one was the best as it was full of surprises and gifts which showed that it had a year of planning and efforts in it. Just awesome. Suddenly, I realized that the stage of my age is not bad at all. I must have done something good in these years to have such a great birthday, but we all know, it’s the gift from God to be blessed so much.

19275064_1581806448519308_2526907392879865540_n

Nataliya and Nadiya, my daughters living out of town, one in Seattle, one in Lahore and Waliya the one living with me in Islamabad all of them had been working on it- as it was a milestone – (tombstone????) –  Nadiya herself came as part of the ‘birthday gift’ (God bless my son-in-law Haaris and his mother Rumi).

Continue reading “Fantastic birthday ideas”

Allama Iqbal and I

(an article of mine printed on February 7th, 1997 in The News:)

Iqbal’s poetry gives purpose to one’s life. Shireen Najib discovers self after reading the English translations of the poet of the East.

DSC_1076 (2) - Copy

I was never touched by Iqbal’s poetry. – Simply because I never understood it. No English medium person can. Our education system has ensured that!

selected PM 1.jpgBut what intrigued me most was …. the way Iqbal’s poetry affected my father. My otherwise martial father, a true Piffer , would be totally ignited by the poetry of Iqbal. Hearing a verse would send him into a trance. I too would try to feel the power of this poetry, and meekly ask:

“Daddy, what does Khirad mean?” He would look at me from far away. Then focus on me. And all he saw was my ignorance. This would send him into a fury.

“You do not know the meaning of khirad? What kind of Urdu do they teach you? How can you be so ignorant??!!”  In all this process of post-mortem of teaching of Urdu in English medium schools in Pakistan … Iqbal would be left far behind ….

Time passed. I was not much affected by the lack of understanding of Iqbal. I had plenty else to do. There was my art, my studies, my friends, my writing, my husband, home, and time consuming children. Where did I have the time for Iqbal?!!

In any case… my father always said “In order to understand Iqbal, you have to have complete knowledge of religion (and not only your own,) Urdu, Arabic, and some Persian, history, and geography.”

Now, tell me, where would I get the time to start learning all those other subjects before I got near Iqbal? Since it was impossible, I forgot all about it.

But there was always something missing in life.

 

I could not pin it down. I could not understand it. You could call it an in-completeness, a lack of satisfaction, a feeling of being all alone, or a feeling of deprivation. Like a ship without anchor in the storm of life. Sometimes I drifted in one direction, sometimes in another. Restless. Furious. Frustrated. I felt the fire of emotions I felt alone in my quest for understand of myself and my fellow human beings.

Continue reading “Allama Iqbal and I”

Life, during Ramzan 2017

 

 

18892899_1560477737318846_3411743786916432449_n
Managed a few walks on my rooftop enjoying the views at night.

 

The last few days of Ramzan are on. It was almost like yesterday, that it began.  As usual there were great expectations, resolutions and apprehensions. “How will I fast for sixteen hours in 43 degrees centigrade? Will I lose some weight?” The few walks I had can’t possibly make up for the feasting!

18814327_1560479580651995_1999293098349670598_n

It is now 2.30 a.m. I’m rather spoilt. After a lifetime of preparing Sehris myself, I have domestic help who brings in the Sehri or breakfast. I’ve just messaged him my requirements on my mobile. ‘Fried egg, toast, tea and melons.’ (I’ve already feasted on a mango!) Here comes my daughter with her home delivery of my favorite burgers. Excuse me please. There is no question of losing weight of course.

One has to remember to take eight glasses of water within the eight hours between Iftari and Sehri. Most of  us aren’t sleeping during the night, only after Sehri  around 4.00 a.m. So, one sleeps in bits and pieces.

Continue reading “Life, during Ramzan 2017”

Why it is best to avoid arguments.

20161028_171552

(The best policy in any relationship: husband and wife, friends, boss and subordinate or any other.)

 

It is a fact that arguments weaken a team. It is best to avoid it.

Come to think of it. It never takes you anywhere, except to get even further apart. I don’t know why, but that is how it goes.

People who are by habit argumentative like:

“But Why???”

“I think it should be done like this….”

“How do you know?”

And so on. Such questions are very ‘normal’ except when they are uttered just to gain time, or to waste it. When a person has no intent of doing something, he goes into argument.

If you watch any one of those popular talk shows on Pakistan’s television networks, there is nothing but argument going on. The belief is; the more arguments there are, the more the ‘rating’ grows. Hence it is egged on even more. The anchor or one of the ‘plants’ will say such a thing that the conversation gets out of proportion ending in hot arguments.

Continue reading “Why it is best to avoid arguments.”

Panic Attack!

20160930_155654

 

How to get yourself out of it.

20160925_185929

It comes on you from nowhere, and suddenly engulfs you with fright and terror. You become at once frozen and yet you want to run out of the enclosed environment as soon as possible. Only that person can relate to it, who has been through it. It’s a very private experience. You desperately want to drink water and you need fresh air at once.

20160917_203447

It can happen in a car, in a traffic jam, in a lift or in an overcrowded room. Your first instinct is to run for your life.

20160910_061928

I had no idea that it is something that can happen, I thought I knew everything. In fact, one feels that such ‘psychological’ things only happen to weak minded individuals. No, certainly not to someone who is so strong-minded as myself. Well, I was very wrong. The first time it happened was in 2006, that was claustrophobia. But the Panic attack  happened to me in 2008.

20160910_062713

Ever been sure of dying ‘right now’? That’s what a panic attack is. Suddenly you feel that there is not enough air to breath. Anyone who has been through it usually ‘knows’ it and is sympathetic. My mother hadn’t. So, she responded with “What nonsense, behave yourself!” Being in an overcrowded room or a large area with closed windows brings it on.

Continue reading “Panic Attack!”

Waliya’s dream trip to Hunza and Fairy Meadows.

 

In this sizzling heat, let us enjoy a trip to the mountains!

Lets go along with Waliya Najib and her friend Amal Iqbal on their trip to the mountains this April, 2017. Yes, we are in this time machine now….

  

18195056_1520397057993581_6471888223581266181_n
“I’m standing at Eagle’s Nest from where you can see most peaks  in Hunza’
18199029_1520397151326905_17298657189079356_n
View from Baltit Fort, Hunza.

Continue reading “Waliya’s dream trip to Hunza and Fairy Meadows.”