You’re Not a Loser, Just a Lost Traveler

By Fatima Ariadne

Narrated by Aisha, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said “None of you should say “my corrupted soul”; but instead he should say “my soul is in a bad shape” (Sahih Bukhari)

“Not a loser. Just a lost traveler”

Sounds like seeking excuse? But it’s a different thing.

Have you noticed that so many people around us, maybe including ourselves –  when they have this downward spiral, drowned into the crisis vortex, when the whole world seems like arranging a mega-conspiracy against them, they utter these self-beating words :

“I’m a failure”

“I’m worthless”

“I’m stupid”

“I’m weak”

I’m an entrepreneur myself, and in my early journey after 2 years of struggling, spending money, and seeing no results, there were down times when I was trapped into a thinking “I’m lame, I’m a failure, it’s of no use anymore”.

And there’s a common thing. Most likely, we’re trapped into an “IF” syndrome. “Oh, if only I do ____ , then it will be ____”

So true that there is a wisdom our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) shared that saying a regretful “if only” will open the gate of satan’s work! But moreover, it weakens our spiritual strength. Let’s check his saying :

“Be eager to reach anything beneficial for you. Ask God for assistance and do not be weak. And if something (unpleasant) befallen upon you, do not say “if  only I do this and that, it will be this and that way”. Instead, say “God has decided, so what He wills, becomes”. Because saying “if only” will open the gate of devil’s work” (Sahih Muslim)

A good saying from Tony Robbins :  “you’re not the state you’re in”. You see, life has its ups and downs. When you’re down, it doesn’t mean you’re lame or pathetic.

It’s just probably YOUR METHOD that sucks. Not you. Not your SELF.

Let’s get an example. When you attempt to climb a tree, but then fall, it doesn’t mean “sheesh, I’m so weak and pathetic, that’s why I couldn’t climb this tree”. It just mean you have to try climbing again. Or if you keep falling, you must try another methods, like rope or ladder.

After all, what would you gain from focusing yourself on “how idiot I am I couldn’t climb this tree (i.e. achieve this goal) while others can”? Nothing! The more you focus on “cannot”, your whole mind, perception, and body will conspire too to support the made-belief of “cannot”. Negativity only begets negativity.

There’s a Prophetic wisdom on this – you’re not the state you’re in. Check it out :

Narrated by Aisha, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said “None of you should say “my corrupted soul”; but instead he should say “my soul is in a bad shape” (Sahih Bukhari)


Shifting the Failure Mentality

So, who defines failure? How do you define failure?

Let’s say that your definition of failure is “not arrive yet from point A to point B no matter how hard you tried”.

Do you know when Edison made his lightbulbs, and these crazy little things were broken over and over again, what did he said? “I didn’t fail. I just discovered 600 methods on how to NOT creating lightbulbs”.

There is no failure in persistent trying. It is only a failure if you’re quitting, and the reason of quitting is giving up. Depends on situation – if your reason to stop is to take a break or exploring another possibilities, well, it could be another story.

One day in an entrepreneur seminar, there’s this self-proclaimed wealth guru saying more or less to the effect : “there are around 95% small business failed within their first year, because they don’t make sufficient money at the time. If you don’t make X amount of money within your first year in business, then sorry you’re a failure too”.

I was like — Huh? Who the hell are you defining who’s a failure and who’s a success? What a pathetic mentality when success and failure borderline is judged on solely the X amount of money – yes, even for a small business. In a silent rage, I told myself that I AM the captain of my life. I AM, not other people, not certain “standardized” size of parameter, who will define I’m a failure or success.

And as long as the key was not cracked yet, it’s not a failure. It’s just a case of “traveling, lost, then trying to get back finding the right path”. It’s called PERSISTENCE.

So when people trying to beat yourself down and convincing you to quit, remember this : You’re not a loser or a failure. You’re just a lost traveler. You just don’t find the correct path yet.

But even so, you cannot stay in the lost state forever. Like any traveler, you should keep walking, figuring out a way back to your intended destination.

You can keep trying.

You can educate yourself with books or seminars.

You can approach people who had been there, done that, and make them your mentor. This could be the best approach. You can save time and headache by learning from other people’s mistake, instead of repeating the same mistake on your own.

You can use your own intuition.

You can pray. Don’t underestimate the power of prayer. If there is an ultimate key to not getting unstuck, I’ll credit it to effort backed by prayer. Absolutely.

And who knows, maybe your goal fulfillment is closer than you thought. ;-)

“Success is not final. Failure is not fatal. It’s the courage to continue that counts” (Winston Churchill)

1 Comment
  1. 1 year ago

    Salam sister, I am so glad i came across your blog. It has really helped me during an extremely rough time. I’ve been reading all your posts and i just feel so much more blessed. I was always feeling this bitter loneliness against the world and thinking that i don’t really have any significance to Allah, or my life doesn’t have much importance, but i’ve realized that he really did make every soul on this earth with a purpose and none of us are ever abandoned by him. Subhanallah i have been praying regularly and reading quran (especially surah rahman, brings me to tears every time) and my recent extreme stresses have helped me realize the uselessness of this world (not to sound like a hermit lol) i mean that everyone around me just cares way too much about worldly things and establishing money and status and i’m slowly changing myself to see this world as a passage as
    Allah intended. Still, i often fall into bouts of self pity and depression but working on it. Inshallah i won’t waste more of my youth being blinded by the physical world haha. But the pressure is so intense to be super successful, im starting college next year and my parents are just on to me about being perfect so that they can uphold ‘family pride’ and i feel like such a failure sometimes for not exceeding expectations. Well i should stop rambling
    Greetings from a fellow sis :D


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