Ramadhan is the ninth month in the Islamic Calender. Within this month, Muslims all over the world observe a fast, abstaining from food and water, throughout daylight hours. With the days getting longer as Ramadhan pushes back into the summer months, this is a challenging time. However, many continue to observe the fasts. Why? As a commandment sent to us by Allah swt, it is a pillar of the faith that has magnificent benefits for us in this life and the next. This post will provide you with 5 tips on getting ready for Ramadhan.
It was narrated that Abu Hurairah said:
“The Messenger of Allah said: ‘Whoever fasts Ramadan out of faith and in the hope of reward, he will be forgiven his previous sins.” (An Nasai)
Reward lies with Allah in the next world for maintaining faith and observing the fasts in Ramadhan. At the same time, there are a large number of benefits we gain from the month in our day to day lives. This month allows us to detach from the worldly activities we spend much time doing, such as going out with friends, watching TV and so on. By detaching, we gain time that can be better spent on self-development and worship.
“Fasting is a shield. When anyone of you is observing fast, he should neither indulge in obscene language nor should he raise his voice; and if anyone reviles him or tries to quarrel with him, he should say: ‘I am fasting.’ “ (Riyad ul Saliheen)
Ramadhan helps develop strength and self-restraint against actions and situations that are best avoided. It also proves to us the abilities and strengths we have within us to abstain from activities that have absolutely no benefit to our lives, be it in this life and the next.
With a mere days away from this month being upon us, it is really important to go into the month with a clear mind and plan on how to make the most of the month. Here are a few simple tips on how to get ready for Ramadhan in shaa allah.
Ask Allah swt to make this Ramadhan the best you have had so far. Ask Him to make it easy for you and to make it one in which you learn many things. It is through the will of Allah that we are able to achieve anything that we do. Success is through Him; to have a successful Ramadhan we must seek it through Him.
The month is only a month long. The days will pass before we know it so it is really important to plan out your month. Have an idea of what goals you want to achieve and how you can go about doing this. Plan what activities you want to be doing this month: are you hoping to host iftars? Do you plan to attend classes? What other commitments do you need to plan around? The reality is many of us are studying or working while fasting so we have to be smart in our planning to fulfil the goals we want to achieve in the month.
Other essential things to keep in mind to have a productive and well planned Ramadhan are: what meals are you having for iftar and suhoor? Can you do any sorting out of the house to avoid doing so in Ramadhan? Are there any activities you can postpone in the month to give you more time to focus on your worship?
3. Healthy Outlook
Remaining healthy, both in mind, body and soul, is so important for this month. Often, we open our fasts and feast on whatever food is available – often unhealthy and lacking in nutrition. This has a negative impact on our body and will directly affect your ability to fulfil acts of worship the next day. An unhealthy meal can have drastic effects on the outcomes of your days in Ramadhan. Eat wholesome, nutritious foods this month with plenty of water. Ensure your Ramadhan meals have a good source of protein, healthy fats and carbohydrates to keep you fuelled for the next fast.
4. Stay Active
Though we are fasting, we should not maintain a stationary lifestyle. By doing so, we are likely to develop unhealthy habits, contrary to the Sunnah. Light exercise is doable in this month and will not cause damage to your body in any way. Go for walks with family and friends to keep yourself active. This will not reduce your energy levels, rather it will help do the opposite. It also provides an opportunity to get outdoors and observe the nature of Allah swt, a reminder to be grateful and thankful for the life around us.
5. Stay Realistic
We sometimes have big, massive goals. This is great because we should aim to be great giants, not mediocre mice. However, we often have an unrealistic mind set in achieving these goals. You may wish to memorise portions of the Qur’an this Ramadhan, and this is great! However, your goal should not be so big that is unattainable in the time you wish to attain it is. By giving ourselves goals in an unrealistic time frame, we risk losing confidence when we do not achieve it as quickly as we want. Be realistic in your Ramadhan goals and hopes and always ask Allah swt to help you achieve everything you wish to.
About the Author
Aishah blogs over at Grains&Gains. Her blog covers a range of personal development topics including productivity, health, fitness and spiritual growth. Visit her blog over at www.grainsandgains.com and follow in facebook and instagram.