Monday, 27 September 2010

Productivity around the PC

These are some very small tips dedicated to those of us who spend long hours with computers as a part of our daily work. The intention is to incorporate amal while working with a PC.

•Begin with Bismillah – Say Bismillah before you press the power button on your machine. Insha Allah your work will turn out well.

•Capitalise on the start-up time – A very common procedure is to head into office, switch on the computer and then go to the coffee machine while the computer readies itself for you. Instead of heading for the coffee, why not flip through a booklet on Islam which you keep on your desk? I happen to have a booklet containing one hundred hadith on my desk. So sometimes while my computer starts up and loads the basic programs (about five minutes) I am able to learn one hadith by heart. It’s not possible everyday because there may be colleagues who drop by to say ‘Good morning’ and see how you’re doing, but when it is possible it certainly is worth trying. Do the same while closing for the day or revise what you learned in the morning.

Added bonus: keeping Islamic material on your desk is a subtle way of performing da’wah, as you never know who might be interested in reading what you’ve got!

•Use the desktop wallpaper or sticky note software to learn things by heart – Repetition is the key to remembering. So for instance, if there’s a dua that you want to memorize, use any of those free post-it software applications to help you. Simply copy and paste the dua into a post-it and let it float on your desktop. Every time you minimize your windows to see the desktop, you will see the post-it and read what’s written on it. So Insha Allah you will learn it quickly. You can do this with hadith, dua, or even ayahs of the Quran.

If you enjoy creating your own desktop wallpaper you could do the same thing there. That way you don’t need special post-it note software.
Why don’t I recommend using the tangible kind of post-its? Those will accumulate and you or whoever cleans your office might end up throwing them in the bin. This isn’t the best way to dispose of papers containing the words of Allah.

•Zikr during waiting time – Got thirty seconds to wait while a web page loads, some files copy to your hard drive, or while a system responds? Instead of twiddling your thumbs you could close your eyes and do some quick zikr or recite some salawath. That way you earn reward and at the same time give your eyes a short break. We’ve all read about giving our eyes frequent breaks while using a computer, right? It doesn’t have to be loud recitation – do it in your heart.

So Insha Allah the next time you’re waiting for something to happen on your computer, sit back, shut your eyes and whisper ‘Subhanallah!’. Call it a spiritually uplifting break.

Insha Allah do try these and let us know how they work for you. What other tips do you have to share regarding this topic?

This post was kindly prepared and submitted by Sr. Fathima Nafla. Jazakillah Khair!