By Umm Ibrahim
Every year, Ramadan is either 696 hours or 720 hours. From the first Maghrib of the month to the last, that’s all it is. That’s all each one of us gets after waiting for a year. The real resource we have is time. Whatever good we can earn in this month, we have to earn in these limited hours.
Allah says about Ramadan:
Ayyamam Ma’doodaat– “A fixed number of days”
With our routines changing drastically in Ramadan, time management can become a problem for many people. Here are a few simple, tried and tested ways you can benefit from:
1- Make a timetable for yourself, where every hour of the day is accounted for. Don’t just drift in and out of the days and nights.
2- Take advantage of the hours after Fajr. Don’t sleep immediately after Fajr. Make abundant zikr and dua’, and read the Quran. If you feel sleepy, take a quick shower or go for a walk until your body becomes tuned to this routine.
“O Allah, bless my ummah in the mornings.’ [Abu Dawood, Al-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah]
3- Take full advantage of other blessed times such as the hours before Iftar and Suhoor time, when duas are accepted. Make sure your heart is connected strongly to Allah during this time, even if your body has to be busy with eating and serving food.
4- Keep remembering Allah throughout the day, even while you are doing your chores or working in the kitchen. Whenever you forget, bring your focus back towards him. Allah says in the Quran:
“..And remember your Lord when you forget..” (Surah al-Kahf: 24)
5- Identify and leave off the time-wasters that are not benefiting you such as TV, long and pointless phone calls etc. Ramadan is the best time to kick them out of your life.
6- Regulate your Social Media usage. Be strict with yourself in this matter. There can be no doubt that this is Time-Waster and Distracter # 1 for today’s youth. Just fix an hour of the day where you are connected online, and you can relax as well as sift through all mails, updates, messages and other important matters. For some people, this might prove to be a tougher test than leaving off food and drink! But, sometimes to connect to Allah, you need to disconnect from the trivial and mundane.
7- Don’t ignore snippets of time. Little drops make an ocean. Even if you get 5 minutes to spare, you can easily read a page of the Quran or any beneficial book in it. Keep your Mushaf with you and stay in a state of wudu as much as possible. You can use your travelling time to listen to Quranic recitation or any beneficial audio series
8- When you feel lazy, remind yourself of the virtues of Ramadan, and remind yourself how little of it is left, and make the Prophetic dua’:
“O Allah! I seek refuge in You from sorrow and distress, and I seek refuge in You from disability and laziness.”