The fence and the nail - Motivational Story for Anger Management


As Salaamu 'alaykum and Peace to all,

Recently i witnessed an incident of a man who lost his cool temporarily. The issue was quite simple, really. Given if he had just a tiny weeny little bit of patience, he could had gracefully solved the problem. I keep thinking to myself, why must we keep losing our temper. I know I had my own account of incidences too, fortunately, alhamdulillaah, when I get angry, i tend to walk away from the situation. To cool of. Not to run away. I would prefer to come back to the situation when things are calm. We think better when we are not under the 'influence' of Syaitan, right? Furthermore, I think I am more of a 'water' person than fire. So, that helps i guess.

Despite my 'temporarily walking away' method, I really want to know if there is a way to help control a person's anger. Or to make a person see how much damage he might accidently do by deciding not to exercise control over his anger. My curiousity was answered in this story...

This is a lovely story which would inspire and help you to deal with a person who has anger problem:

There was a boy who was always losing his temper. His father gave him a bag full of nails and said to him, “My son, I want you to hammer a nail into our garden fence every time you need to direct your anger against something and you lose your temper.”

So the son started to follow his father’s advice. On the first day he hammered in 37 nails, but getting the nails into the fence was not easy, so he started trying to control himself when he got angry. As the days went by, he was hammering in less nails, and within weeks he was able to control himself and was able to refrain from getting angry and from hammering nails. He came to his father and told him what he had achieved. His father was happy with his efforts and said to him: “But now, my son, you have to take out a nail for every day that you do not get angry.”

The son started to take out the nails for each day that he did not get angry, until there were no nails left in the fence.

He came to his father and told him what he had achieved. His father took him to the fence and said, “My son, you have done well, but look at these holes in the fence. This fence will never be the same again.” Then he added: “When you say things in a state of anger, they leave marks like these holes on the hearts of others. You can stab a person and withdraw the knife but it doesn’t matter how many times you say ‘I’m sorry,’ because the wound will remain.

“Show forgiveness, enjoin what is good, and turn away from the foolish (i.e., don’t punish them).”[al-A’raaf 7:199]

“Verily, he who fears Allaah with obedience to Him (by abstaining from sins and evil deeds, and by performing righteous good deeds), and is patient, then surely, Allaah makes not the reward of the Muhsinoon (good‑doers) to be lost” [Yoosuf 12:90]

“The good deed and the evil deed cannot be equal. Repel (the evil) with one which is better (i.e. Allaah orders the faithful believers to be patient at the time of anger, and to excuse those who treat them badly) then verily he, between whom and you there was enmity, (will become) as though he was a close friend” [Fussilat 41:34]

“And verily, whosoever shows patience and forgives, that would truly be from the things recommended by Allaah” [al-Shoora 42:34]

Deep, dont you think? After this story, I keep asking myself. Have i made any holes in the hearts of people around me? Astaghfirullaah.

Copyright (c) Sis Zabrina 2006
~ Your Source for Islamic Motivational and Inspirational Stories ~

Sis Zabrina
Life Storyteller
Author of Life is an Open Secret - 18 Inspirational Stories from Ordinary life experiences

~ Life Storyteller Blog: Your Source for Islamic Motivational and Inspirational Stories~

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Anonymous said…
As Salamu Alaikum Zabrina,

Another excellent piece. I have passed it on to friends. may Allah reward your efforts. Ameen

JazakAllah Khair
Anonymous said…
As Salamu Alaikum

from - Inspire yourself ..

A Feast for Clothes

Once upon a time in the Iranian city of Shiraz, there lived the famous poet Sheikh Saadi. Like most other poets and philosophers, Sheikh Saadi was not a rich man. He led a very simple life. A rich merchant of Shiraz invited Sheikh Saadi along with a lot of other big businessmen of the town on the occasion of his daughter’s marriage which was to be a grand affair. Sheikh Saadi accepted the invitation and decided to attend.

On the day of the wedding, the host and his family were receiving the guests at the gate. They were ushering all the guests towards the dining hall. All the rich people of the town attended the wedding. They had come out in best of their attires. Sheikh Saadi wore simple clothes which were neither grand nor expensive. He waited in a corner for someone to approach him but no one gave him as much as even a second glance. Even the host did not acknowledge him and looked away. Seeing all this, Sheikh Saadi quietly left the party and went to a shop from where he could hire clothes. There he chose a richly brocaded dress which was embroidered in gold on the margins. He selected a fancy turban and a waist-band to go with it. As he put on the hired dress and looked into the mirror, he found himself a changed person.

With this, he entered the dining hall and this time was welcomed with open arms. The host embraced him as he would do to an old friend and complimented him on the clothes he was wearing. On seeing him, he said, “And here comes our favourite poet. What took you so long, friend? We have been waiting for you for ages! How good of you to have come. The gathering surely would have been incomplete without your gracious presence!” Saadi did not utter a word and allowed the host to lead him to the dining room where other guests had assembled. Tasty dishes had been laid out on grand carpets. Saadi was offered a seat with soft cushions. The food was served in fine crockery and cutlery made out of silver.

The host led Sheikh Saadi by hand and himself served out the chicken soup and the fragrant rice to him. After this, something strange happened. Sheikh Saadi dipped the corner of his waist-coat in the soup and sprinkled some rice on it. Addressing the clothes, he said: “This is a feast for you, you should enjoy it.”

All the guests were now staring at him in surprise. The host said, “Sir, what are doing? How can your colthes eat? And why should they? To this query, Sheikh Saadi very calmly replied: “My dear friend, I am indeed surprised with the question coming from you.”

“Aren’t you the same person who did not even throw a look at me when I came dressed in simple clothes. I can guess that it is my clothes and appearance that matter with you, not my individual worth. Now that I have put on grand clothes, I see a world of difference in reception here. All that I can now say is that this feast is meant for my clothes, not for me.”

Taken from Islamic Voice

Email this story, inspire someone ..

— Next Inspirational Story » ...Qisas is the plural of Qissah - a word denoting many meanings in the arabic language - most significant being “stories” or narrations..

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Allah HAfiz,

Abdul Latif

| - Inspire yourself.. - |
Sis Zabrina said…

As Salaamu 'alaykum brother Ron,

It is always a pleasant thing to read comments from my readers. It keeps me going! Alhamdulillaah, thanks for sharing the stories with your friends. Please do so. The more the merrier! :))

Sis Zabrina
Sis Zabrina said…

As Salaamu 'alaykum brother Ron,

That is a huge database of narratives you gave me. Thanks! I shall read them all, and adapt them to suit my daily writings together with supporting Quranic verses and al-hadeeth. I feel like a little girl in a candy store! :))Thanks again! I appreciate the help...

Sis Zabrina
Sharique said…
Assalamu Alaikum,
That site is great...lot of inspirational stories
Sis Zabrina said…

As Salaamu 'alaykum,

Yes, i agree. It is a good site, alhamdulillaah...

Sis Zabrina
Anonymous said…
As Salaamu 'alaykum,

Thank you very for all the inspirational stories. It keeps me on my feet.

May Allah bless all of you.

Anonymous said…
salam alaikum...

Thank you for the story.

I read this story for many times from different sources...every time I read this story i will get there is NO SORRY for us.

But every human being cannot escape from doing mistakes...Astaghfirullah Al-'Aziim...

Anonymous said…
"The strong man is not the one who is strong in wrestling, but the one who controls himself in anger." (Bukhari, Muslim)

Very true!coz it's very hard to control our anger right?

Sis Zabrina said…

As Salaamu 'alaykum and peace to all,

Dearest sis Madehah,

Ameen to your prayers. JazakAllaah khayran for reading these stories, inshaAllaah, it would assist us all in our daily decisions.

Take care sis and salaams
Sis Zabrina
Sis Zabrina said…

As Salaamu 'alaykum and peace to all,

Dear t_msa, yes, absolutely! It is a constant battle for me too. May Allaah gives us all strength to overcome our anger, ameen...

Sis Zabrina
Anonymous said…
Outstanding story there. What occurred after? Thanks!