Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Wisdoms of Hazrat Luqman

1. Anything that you preach, practice it first.

2. Speak according to your rank.

3. Recognize the respect of people.

4. Recognize the rights of people.

5. Guard your secrets.

6. Test your friends in times of trouble.

7. Try out your friends in times of profit and loss.

8. Keep away from stupid people.

9. Be a friend of clever and wise men.

10. Show your efforts in good work.

11. Plan with clever and wise men.

12. Speak with affection.

13. Value your youth.

14. While you are young do the work of this world and hereafter.

15. Honor your friends.

16. Deal with your friends and enemies in an honest way.

17. Regard your parents as a blessing.

18. Regard your teacher as your best guardian.

19. Spend according to your income.

20. In all your work take the middle course.

21. Serve your guests to the best of your ability.

22. Make generosity a habit.

23. When entering somebody's home look after your eyes and tongue.

24. Keep your clothes and body clean.

25. Be friendly to your society.

26. Teach your son knowledge and discipline.

27. When dressing start by putting on your shoes and socks on your right foot, and when taking them off, begin with the left foot.

28. When working with somebody, work recording to his capacity.

29. While speaking at night, speak softly; and while speaking during the day, first keep an eye on all sides.

30. Don't stretch in front of people.

31. Anything that you don't like for yourself, don't prefer it for others.

32. Work with intelligence and planning.

33. Don't try to teach when you are not learned.

34. Don't set your heart on things which belong to others.

35. Form a habit of speaking less, eating less and sleeping less.

36. Don't undertake any work without thinking.

37. Undone work should not be thought as completed.

38. Do not leave today's work for tomorrow.

39. Don't joke with your elders.

40. Don't bore your elders with lengthy talks.

41. Do not encourage people to be rude to you.

42. Don't disappoint a man in need.

43. Do not remember past disputes.

44. Don't confuse your own good with the benefits of others.

45. Do not show your wealth to friends and enemies.

46. Don't ignore your relationship with relatives.

47. Don't scandalize about people.

48. Don't admire yourself.

49. If a group of men are standing, do likewise and stand.

50. Don't point fingers at others.

51. Don't pick your teeth in front of others.

52. Don't spit or clean your nose loudly.

53. When yawning keep your hand in front of your mouth.

54. Don't expect loyalty from ill-bred people.

55. Don't speak nonsense.

56. Don't make people ashamed in front of others.

57. Don't repeat something that has been said already.

58. Don't make signs with your eyes and eyebrows.

59. Don't praise yourself and your family in front of others.

60. Don't decorate yourself like a woman.

61. Don't do what your children want you foolishly to do.

62. Guard your tongue.

63. Don't gesticulate when speaking.

64. Look after the respect of people.

65. Don't mix with offenders.

66. Don't recall the dead by their ill-doings, because there is no benefit in it.

67. As long as possible try not to start fights and arguments.

68. Don't continuously test your strength on others.

69. Don't take an experienced person to be noble.

70. Don't eat your bread at the table of others.

71. Don't hurry in your work.

72. Don't grieve over worldly things.

73. Don't become acquainted with anybody that does not value himself.

74. At times of anger say things thoughtfully.

75. Don't clean your nose with your sleeves.

76. Don't sleep at sunrise.

77. When walking with your elders, don’t walk in front of them.

78. Don't interrupt while other people talk.

79. Don't rest your head on your knees in the presence of others.

80. While you are walking look where you are going and do not look around.

81. Don't order your guests to do something for you.

82. Don't get angry with any one in the presence of your guests.

83. Don't sit with loiterers and doubtful characters in the street.

84. Don't lose your respect for the sake of profit and loss.

85. Don't be a wastrel and proud of yourself.

86. Don't carry people’s enmity on to yourself.

87. Keep away from strife and trouble.

88. Be friendly to people, but not to the extent that you may lose your own respect.

89. Don't belittle yourself.

90. Devote your life and with Allah by truthfulness.

91. Devote your life and with your ego by discipline.

92. Devote your life and with people by being just.

93. Devote your life and with your elders by service.

94. Devote your life and with your young by being sympathetic.

95. Devote your life and with the poor by generosity.

96. Devote your life and with your friends by advice and love.

97. Devote your life and with your enemies by patience.

98. Devote your life and with the ignorant by silence.

99. Devote your life and with the wise men by respect.

100. Don't covet others wealth, and in this manner spend your life.

101. When you have a lot don't store, and when it comes, don't refuse it.

102. I have carried steel and stones but nothing is heavier than (the Amaanat) of Deen.

103. I have experienced comfort and pleasure, but nothing is more pleasurable than safety.

104. I have tasted bitterness of all kinds, but nothing is bitterer than dependence on others.

105. I learnt good manners from the bad mannered.

106. I learnt wisdom from the blind who don’t step forward without feeling the ground.

107. There can never be a spoken or written word from which the wise cannot derive benefit.

108. Even a hundred books of wisdom cannot make a fool wiser, if he is not ready to benefit from them.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

10 Tips for Being a Better Office Professional

1. Do not discuss your salary/wage with your coworkers.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people do this. There is essentially zero good that can come out of this. One way or another somebody’s feelings are going to be hurt. It can cause a lot of strife between people and it’s even a terminable offense in most workplaces.

The only people that you could share your salary with are the following:

* Spouse or signifigant other if you live together or otherwise share a budget.
* Parents (with the understanding that it is strictly confidential, no telling their golf buddies, AA group or Joey your 4th cousin twice removed.)
* Your accountant.
* That’s it.

2. Perception is reality.

No matter how unfair it is, no matter how illogical it can be, it is the absolute 100% truth. People don’t have time in the workplace to ferret out the whole story. If you’re seen as a slacker, you’re a slacker. If you’re seen as a hothead, you’re a hothead.

Work hard to cultivate the perception you think you should have and protect it once it is achieved. That means you may have to work harder/faster/better than the other guy or gal if you’ve already been branded.

Along the same lines, be careful who you hang out with at work. It’s very easy to be pigeonholed with a group if you frequently go on breaks with, lunch with or otherwise hangout with people who act less that professionally (or proficiently) in the workplace.

3. Be honest with your coworkers, but not too honest.

If this job is just a stepping stone towards bigger and better things, don’t share that with the 20 year lifer that you just met at the office. I was guilty of this at my first professional job. I think back on that and realize what a jerk I must have sounded like.

Hopes and dreams are great, but try to keep conversations with your coworkers light, at least in the early going before you really know them.

4. Choose your battles wisely.

No you will not quit if they switch from Arrowhead bottled water to Sparkletts. Get a grip.

Some battles are worth fighting, others are small potatoes. Think of it this way. Every day that you work and do an acceptable job you earn a certain number of points. As you spend more time at the job you accrue these points until you can cash them in for several purposes.

One of those purposes is in the eternal battle to impose your will on others. Whether it’s a raise or more donuts on Friday. If you’re constantly spending your points you’re going to find yourself fresh out when something REALLY important comes along like… say… layoffs.

You always want to have a cache of points to turn in when you need them.

5. Nobody likes a whiner.

This goes hand in hand with choosing your battles. If you are constantly whining about things then you will actually lose points without getting anything for them besides irritated coworkers. If your chair is uncomfortable, go swipe one from somewhere else, or politely ask the office manager about maybe getting a new one.

If you can’t get whatever ails you resolved quickly and in a polite non-whiny manner, try to learn to live with it or fix it yourself.

6. Don’t get shitfaced at happy hour or the holiday party.

Wooo open bar! Hold on there partner. While it’s ok to have a cocktail or two while you’re at a company function, don’t get obliterated.

I’ve seen more than my share of otherwise normal folks completely crash and burn due to their allowing their cup to runneth over.

Take it easy, have fun, but remember that come Monday morning, yes they will remember if you act like an idiot while plastered. Minus points.

7. Get it in writing.

Email is one of the single greatest inventions ever in corporate accountability.

If there is ever a doubt in your mind about what you’ve been tasked to do, get it in writing. Sometimes people make judgement calls on the fly when they’re pressed for time. More often than not, when they are proven to have made the incorrect call, they will turn to you and ask you why you did that (idiot!). So having their instructions in black and white will save your ass a hundred times over the course of your career.

Get it in writing. Plus points if you catch the office bully with his pants down using this technique.

8. This isn’t high school or college A) debating.

Academic debates about random crap are fantastic fun in a scholastic setting. Nobody wants to debate arbitrary minutiae in the office, especially your boss.

9. This isn’t high school or college B) over the top.

While it may have been fun to be the over the top bombastic “willing to do anything to get a rise out of someone” kind of person back in school, this does NOT fly in the workplace.

Yes, it was jolly good fun to tease people and make people uncomfortable back in the day, but not any more when your livelihood hangs in the balance. This goes for discussing politics and religion as well. It’s just not a good idea.

10. Smile, today’s the first day of the rest of your career!

A positive attitude can have a great affect on your interpersonal relations at work and your career in general. Bosses and coworkers are a lot more forgiving if you can take a beating and still keep a bit of cheer about yourself.

Remember, it’s just work, don’t take it too seriously.

The number 1 rule for all the above is to REMEMBER ALL OF THE ABOVE. Complacency kills. As time goes along it's real easy to forget where you are, and let some things slip.

Make sure you stay on your game.