They claim that the grass is always greener on the other side. It’s only natural for us humans to wish for what we don’t have. It’s like the child who stares out from his third floor window with his chin propped up on a fist,a solitary tear on his cheek as he watches other children playing with the snow below, signs of joy adorning their faces as they hit each other with snow balls. Then this child sighs and rolls away his wheelchair, wishing to feel the cold snow splattering against his face, hear the laugh come out of his own chest, but he can only sit and imagine it.
Yet when we keep our view outward like that, always comparing ourselves to others, we will never be satisfied, because we will always meet people who have something we want but don’t have, especially in terms of materialistic wealth, possessions and status.
And the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) taught us what to do in such situations as given in this Hadeeth …
On the authority of Abu Hurairah ( may Allah be pleased with him ), who said: The messenger of Allah ( peace and blessings of Allah be upon him ) said: Look upon one who is below you in status and do not look upon one who is above you in status. In this way you will not look down upon the grace that Allah has bestowed upon you. ( Bukhari and Muslim ) 
The thing is, if this child were to stop looking out the window, and survey what he already has, like the contents of his room, or his loving family, or the free time in his hand, he might realize that what he has already compensates for what he doesn’t have. So the question this child should ask himself is, “How can I use what I already have to advance myself as a Muslim, and benefit other Muslims in general? How can I develop what I already have to move myself forward? What’s the first step I need to take today to jump forward?”
And that’s similar to the idea of “capitalizing on your assets” that is used by business people. It’s just making the most out of what you have right now. Don’t think about tomorrow…
Don’t think about next month…
Think about what right now…
Given what you already have…
Not hope to get…
But what you already have… in terms of assets.
Of course, when business people talk about capitalizing their assets, they’re talking about getting the most money out of those assets. Since – all praise is due to Allah – we’re Muslims, we’ve got it better, as we think in terms of more ajr and more opportunity to do good deeds on Earth.
*Or at least, that’s what we’re supposed to think in terms of.*
One of my engineering friends called the idea, “increasing efficiency,” which was quite interesting because in any generic engineering system, we’ve got: Input -> Process-> Output
Efficiency is defined by the ratio of output/input, so when we think of taking a step forward, or making a life-altering change in – what we hope – is the right direction, what we’re trying to do is actually trying to increase the efficiency of our own system, and that is, getting the most output out of the input we’ve been given.
And if we attempt to extend the analogy, all physical systems incur some losses on the way, so the efficiency is never a 100% unless Allah wills it otherwise. Similarly, we might intend to take a step, or make a change, but it might not work out, or it might not work out the way we’ve planned, and that’s one of the beauties of being Muslim, because we believe that everything that Allah (SWT) has written for the believer is kheir.
So if we tried so hard, and things didn’t work out, then there must be good in there. But that doesn’t mean that we quit trying especially if we really believe in what we are doing. It also doesn’t meant that we obsess over the failures along the way, and get disappointed, because the implicit message might be to just be patient because we never know, something better might show up down the road.
And there’s a quote defining patience, “Patience is waiting. Not passively waiting. That is laziness. But to keep going when the going is hard and slow – that is patience.”
So in a nutshell, today’s reminder to myself is this, the grass is not greener on the other side. Don’t even look there. Keep your focus on this side, be grateful for what you have, make sure your intentions are pure for Allah’s sake, try to capitalize on your assets, increase your efficiency, make changes but don’t obsess over failures, because change needs time and patience, and have faith that what is maktoob is kheir.
 arabic text;
عن أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه قال : قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم : ” انظروا إلى من هو أسفل منكم ولا
تنظروا إلى من هو فوقكم فهو أجدر أن لا تزدروا نعمة الله عليكم ” . ( رواه البخاري ومسلم ، واللفظ لمسلم