Salummy: Tell us about yourself.
AbdulQadir: My name is AbdulQadir Mahmoud. I am a 22-year-old student at Pwani University, Kilifi, pursuing Agribusiness Management and Trade. I am also a certified peer counselor and mentor and the current organizing secretary for SUMSAC (Supreme Union of Muslim Students Associations of Coast – Kenya), an organization aimed at uniting Muslims in all Universities in the Coast region.
I am a Parkour and a free running athlete and also a writer, an occasional poet and a blogger (Be sure to check out my works at www.selfcharge.blogspot.com. You know you don’t want to click that link…do it anyways😁😁😁😁😁😁). But most importantly, I am a young adult who’s trying to figure out his place in this world.
Salummy: I see that you are a jack of many trades. What are you most passionate about?
Abdulqadir: If it’s on passion, I really enjoy the small darker ones compared to the big yellow ones. I’ve always thought of them as sweeter in taste than the yellows. Sorry yellow passion fans.
But aside from sweetness for the tongue, my heart lies with People. This is very confusing if you know me in person because I am an introvert. If you’re also one, it means you’d rather have a quiet day in after a long tiresome week, than go out with friends to refresh. Regardless, having a chance to listen to people’s stories, be a help in their lives, give them hope, purpose, meaning… a chance to be an inspiration; I’ll take that any day.
For that reason, I started a blog (it’s the one with the link up there😄. Click it😐) and in shaa Allah, more projects to come soon. Because I believe in Humanity. And more so, I believe it’s up to us, the youth of today, to prepare the youth of tomorrow. So that they can be the change we’ve all been waiting for.
Salummy: hmm… Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
AbdulQadir: Lol, five years is a long time. All your cousins in your age bracket could be married with two children and a third on the way by then 😂. But in shaa Allah, I’ll be half way to my dream biidhnillah. Your duas in shaa Allah.
Salummy: What is your greatest achievement?
AbdulQadir: My greatest achievement, for me, was making the decision to become a peer counselor. It’s not even about the number of people I counsel most of the time, I mean, the market for counseling fellow peers is a bit, dry, if you know what I mean. But rather, it’s about what you learn in becoming one. The knowledge I gained from the training has really changed my perspective on people and also on myself.
If anything, you become more self-aware, less judgmental, more appreciative and more open to others in helping them. You have the ability to interact with others and connect with them and the confidence, Alhamdulillah. It opens a lot of doors for you. At this point in time, that’s my deal breaker.
Salummy: What legacy do you want to leave behind?
AbdulQadir: Maya Angelou once said, “Your legacy, is every life you’ve touched.” And nothing has resonated with this more for me like the story of the old woman and Prophet Muhammad upon him be peace. She complained to him about a man who was drifting her family apart not knowing that the same man, was the one helping her with her relocation.
He spoke with actions more than he spoke with words and every time he did so, he touched a life. Now he is the most influential and vastly known person in the world. And he is not even in it; Upon him be peace. That is the legacy I want to leave behind. In shaa Allah.
Salummy: I am impressed. What would you like to advise the youth?
AbdulQadir: Off the top of my head, I’d like to leave four main things with the youth. Retirement age is like 65 now, so, feel free to feel young and take with you as much as you can. Make them anti-Israaf units at weddings proud #food is life.
The first advice I’d give anyone I meet is ‘Kun Anta’. Be yourself. Nothing leaves you hanging than trying to fit in or change for others. For this is the cancer for the drive called Purpose. You will never know where to begin with yourself if you don’t know where the start line is. Kun Anta. Be yourself. And you will find your calling.
After you’ve established your natural state, then comes the do’s: Be true to yourself. Realize when you are trying to justify your actions with lies. Whether the truth about who you are now and who you want to be is bitter or sweet, it is still the reality. Apply cold water to the burnt area and move on. Growth comes with change and change can never unfold where the problem is considered the norm. Be true to yourself.
You’re getting better now. Good job. This third advice is the hard part: Give it everything. Give it your all. Remember that Purpose I mentioned earlier, this is where it makes it all easier. When you accept who you are, you become aware of what you can do better; what comes easily to you. Build on that. Learn how you and others around you can benefit from it and then work. Give it your all. Purpose will give you the drive to keep you standing. So start walking until all you do is run.
Finally, the most important of all of these is: Don’t let yourself go. No effort exerted and no time invested will mean anything if you let yourself go. When you get hungry or bored, you will find yourself peeping into the fridge for some food. Get hungry or bored. Let it be your second nature. Develop a stubborn mind and attitude behind your dreams and merge it with the first three points. You will become unstoppable, biidhnillah. And when you’re unstoppable, changing the world is just the beginning. So Be yourself, Be true to yourself, Give it your all and Don’t let yourself go.
Peace be upon you all.
Salummy: AbdulQadir, you have left me speechless. Thank you for your time and for your inspiration.