20 Time Management Tips For MuslimsSaturday, August 06, 2011 Read more → Abdullah-Osman, imaan series, series, top tips In the name of God, entirely Compassionate, especially Merciful | Peace be with you
In his opening address to his Jinni followers, Shaytan (the devil) said, “We can’t keep the Muslims from going to mosques or reading the Qur'an. We can’t even keep them from forming an intimate, abiding relationship with Allah.
Once they gain that connection with Allah, our power over them is broken. So let them go to their mosques; let them have their conservative lifestyles, but steal their time, so they can’t gain that relationship with Allah.
Distract them from gaining hold of their Lord. Keep them busy in the non essentials of life and invent innumerable schemes to occupy their minds,” he told the Jinn. “Tempt them to spend, spend, spend, and borrow, borrow, borrow.
Persuade them to go to work for long hours so they can afford their empty lifestyles. Keep them from spending time with their children. Over-stimulate their minds so that they cannot hear that still, small voice. Entice them to play the radio whenever they drive, to keep the TV, VCR, CDs and their PCs going constantly in their home and see to it that every store and restaurant in the world plays feeds their appetites constantly. This will jam their minds and break that union with Allah.”
“Soon they will be working in their own strength, sacrificing their health and family for the good of the cause. It will work! It will work!” It was quite a convention. The evil Jinn went eagerly to their assignments causing Muslims everywhere to get busier and more rushed, distracted from their real goals.
Although a fable, the message of clear. If you’re chasing your tail from morning to evening, waking up early, working late, not sleeping enough, studying hard and pursuing all the luxuries of this world, how much time do you devote towards you Lord? Apart from the 5 daily prayers, (I’m assuming we all manage that much at least) are we able to spare a few extra minutes everyday to read Qur'an? 5 minutes a day to read a Hadith? 5 minutes at the end of each day to thank Allah for his bounties, or to pray for guidance? A few minutes after each prayer for the remembrance of our Lord?
Why don’t we have the time?
From a young age we are moulded to pursue a material lifestyle. We are told: go to school so you can study, go to university so you can get a job, get a job so you can make money, make more money so you can afford that house, that car, the holidays, the gadgets… But once you’re in the system, it ain’t easy to unplug. We are all guilty of it. Unfortunately the lifestyle many of us pursue is not conducive to the simpler lifestyle that Islam teaches. However, I don’t believe they are completely incompatible.
As I mentioned in “The jar of life”, sometimes the less important things in life can distract us, filling up our time and keeping us away from our own peace of mind. If we get our priorities in order, we can fit everything in. The key is to prioritize, do what’s most important and insha'Allah (God willing) you will see Barakah (blessings) in your time and Barakah in your life.
As a Muslim, prioritize your faith. Be punctual and sincere in your prayers. Try to devote some time each day to your Lord. Spend time with your family and do charitable work. Fulfil your religious obligations and seek extra knowledge in your faith, even 5 minutes a day is worthwhile. Your career, no matter how important it may be, must come after your religion and family. You will find that if you are able to maintain this balance, your work, studies and other responsibilities will find a way to work around your faith and you will succeed in them too.
A few things I’ve learnt to aid in better time management are:
- Wake up earlier to pray Fajr
- Eat regularly with smaller portions, and eat healthy during Ramadan
- Read at least 10 verses of Qur'an a day
- Stay focused with daily exercise, even if a ten minute walk
- Always make du`a/Qur'an/family checklists and use them, use a journal to keep track of what you have learnt
- Work the hardest in the first half of your day
- Take breaks to de-stress
- Skip the music – listen to Islamic lectures or nasheeds
- Avoid unnecessary distractions during fasting or exam season (Facebook, Twitter, aimless surfing) – there’s a time and place for this!
- Remember Allah when you're not working and reflect upon His bounties
- When doing things for others, make a sincere intention – sometimes the only difference between a random act and a spiritual act is the intention
- Make quality time for your family, go out together, plan an event together
- Avoid gossip and bad company. Control your tongue or just leave
- Thank Allah for his provisions, this is called shukr, say alhamdulillah
- Read an enlightening book that imparts morals. No good deed will go unnoticed
- Avoid spending evenings with the t.v. or gaming
- If you do watch t.v., don’t let it be the last thing you do before bed
- Renew your faith by visiting the mosque daily
- Make a sincere intention to wake up the next day for Fajr
- Make wudhu and sleep early
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