A hundred possibilities and a thousand contingencies, all tied to the question what if? As humans, we tend to analyze our lives and think if I had taken up that opportunity, or if I had married that person then maybe my life would’ve been happier or better.
Humans, by nature, are a very inquisitive creation of Allah. A man in his curiosity and his desire to win and achieve excellence constantly keeps on contemplating his life from different perspectives. He keeps reworking certain situations in his brain and thinking about alternative outcomes of certain events. The what-ifs in his life can have a positive as well as a very negative impact on a person. It is natural that every man wants his life and all the elements of his life to be perfect.
What-ifs are generally negative and unhealthy connotations. In fiction stories, the use of what-ifs proves to grab the attention of the reader and puts him in a loop of thinking alternate endings or outcomes. However, in real life the more a person questions himself what-if, the more it aggravates his anxiety and in most cases, according to studies, it is one of the root causes of sadness and in some cases can lead to depression. What-ifs take you away from the real world, the present day and the person who is asking himself what-if is either dwelling in the past or dreading his future.
Looking at this from an Islamic point of view, one of the six articles of faith is the belief in predestination and decree. Predestination and decree mean everything that befalls a person was meant to befall him and everything that missed him was meant to miss him. This belief that everything is by Allah’s will is one of the best ways to bring a human mind to a balance and is the best way to relieve him of his stress. It was narrated that Abu Hurairah said: “The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “The strong believer is better and more beloved to Allah than the weak believer, although both are good. Strive for that which will benefit you, seek the help of Allah, and do not feel helpless. If anything befalls you, do not say, “if only I had done such and such” rather say “Qaddara Allahu wa ma sha’a fa’ala (Allah has decreed and whatever he wills, He does).” For (saying) ‘If’ opens (the door) to the deeds of Satan.”
What-if can also be a positive connotation in certain instances, for example, it can be used to give hope to a person who has a shaken confidence or who has experienced a failure. A person, who is in a state of grief after a failure, can be given a what-if scenario in order to give him hope of a better future by manifesting the idea what if the situation had been even worse than it already is.
The final verdict on the what-ifs of life is that rather than having a what-if attitude at all times a person should be more inclined towards an ‘Oh-well’ attitude. Accepting that everything that happens, happens for a reason and rather than questioning things and thinking of alternate endings, we should be able to live in the now and go with the flow. The use of what-ifs can be completely negated neither can they be used at all times; life is about finding a balance and knowing how to use things/questions/resources to your benefit. In the end, we would like to ask you: what if you hadn’t read this blog? Would you still let the what-ifs of your life bother you?