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Strengthen your Resolve and Organize your Ramadan
June 29, 2014, 12:49 pm
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Some of us find it difficult to follow our spiritual plan in Ramadan, despite our true desire for change. In this article, I will share a new planning scheme that might be helpful in planning your Ramadan from Sha’ban and to practice it in advance. Each year when Ramadan comes, we start thinking about the glory of this month with many ambitions and plans.

Unfortunately, on the last night of Ramadan, some of us look back and feel dissatisfied by what we have done. We find that we did not do what we planned or what we did fell short of our plan.We might wonder why! Our desire to improve ourselves spiritually and socially during Ramadan goes poof with the winds despite the fact that demons are locked up and cannot be blamed for our failure!

Sometimes bad feelings push us to question our faith and commitment to the religion on the night of Eid. In fact, the reason is simpler than we can ever imagine.In my opinion, the problem lies in the fact that most of our plans are done without mindfulness. We make promises only in our minds and resolve to fulfill tasks during the holy month only in words. But what we really need is an organized, written plan that goes in tandem with training.

Yes, I do mean rehearsing. Any successful event in the world needs pre-planning and training:any speech you’ll be giving, any meeting you’ll be attending oreven any gathering that you will be going to. So what about the great month of Ramadan, which presents you the opportunity to repent for all your mistakes and to have your name written on the Jannah list?! Do you not think that your plan for this month needs some training?

Preparation Before Ramadan: Throughout the year, daily responsibilities overload our lifestyle. All of us have thoughts like:“I need to concentrate more during my prayers”, “I should try to pray more sunnah” or “I want to read the Qur’an more frequently”,“I should help more sisters/brothers in my community”.. etc. Most of us find it difficult to make the first step, and if we are lucky enough to start, we find it difficult to stick to our plan.

Ramadan is a yearly opportunity that helps us fulfill our spiritual duties in 30 days. Here we have a yearly chance ofp raised 30 days to make a radical change, not only for ourselves,but also for our Islamic community.

Set Your Goals: To have a productive Ramadan, we need to specify our goals. Your goals should be realistic; plans you can accomplish in Ramadan and continue doing them even after Ramadan. Your goals should be very specific and achievable within a limited period of time: you set specific plans for each week or every 10 days. Write them down with clear steps on how to fulfill them. Finally, your plans should not be self centered.Muslims should be productive in their communities as well (whether you live in a Muslim community one or not, it does not matter).

Prepare Yourself Domestic Level: Prepare your blessed abode for Ramadan. Prepare the family’s Eid clothes before Ramadan starts so that you do not spend the blessed hours of Ramadan doing your shopping.

Psychological/Emotional Level: Write your timetable and put it in a place that you can see it clearly every time you enter your room. Decorate it if needed (you can make hand drawings-flowers, Ka’aba etc.) and use colors, stickers, some glitter and other personal touches. Let it reflect your personality. The little ones can help in that as well. Read more about how people used to spend Ramadan in the past, or how different cultures celebrate Ramadan.  Share your new information with others.

Religious Level: Read more about fasting instructions from good books and trusted sites. This way, you avoid having doubts about the validity of your fasting. It will boost your self confidence.

Motivation Level: Look for a competitor who has an similar plan. Although this might seem like an easy task, it is not! Do not get a weak competitor so you win whatever you do! Your competitor has to be someone who will give you that extra push when you slow down.

Train Yourself: Maybe one of the most important reasonsof our failure during Ramadan is our lack of training. During Ramadan, we break our daily rhythm of life, starting by giving up our morning coffee. To add to this, we start another ibadah schedule – taraweeh, Qur’an and dhikr. In most cases, our bodies get exhausted from the first week, thus slowing down our progress and weakening our motivation. By training, you introduce your body, mind and soul to what is coming forward. It is exactly like how sport works. It is better to feel tired in Sha’ban,but trained and consistent in Ramadan.

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