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September 19, 2010

Post-Ramadan Teensie-Weensie Tip #4: Compare your pre-Ramadan and post-Ramadan selves

by Umm Muawiyah

Assalamu Alaikum.

So, just how did you envision yourself after Ramadan?

Think about the following things (or better yet, write them down):

1) What were your goals for Ramadan? Did you achieve them? Why or why not?

2) How different are you from your pre-Ramadan self? Have you improved? If so, then in what areas? Why?

3) How many things have you managed to continue doing after Ramadan? For example, do you still pray Tahajjud (even if it is just 1 rakaah)?

4) What were the reasons that caused you to continue or discontinue what you were doing during Ramadan?

5) How do you see yourself next Shaban?

6) How do you envision spending next Ramadan?

Go to a quiet room and spend an hour just thinking about the above questions.

The reason that we never seem to improve (or improve at a snail’s pace) is because we don’t set a plan or follow a plan that we did set.

Also, we seem to be dependent on Ramadan to change us but that shouldn’t be the case. We can change at any time. We just need to do dua and then push ourselves to act.

Before you know it, it’ll be Ramadan again (assuming that we are blessed to still be alive) and we’ll go through the same steps again i.e. listen to a few lectures in Shaban, have high hopes for Ramadan, do nothing much in Ramadan and then flounder in Shawwal*.

[*Okay, this doesn’t happen to everybody, alhamdulillah but sadly it seems to happen to most of us.]

This time, I think we should start thinking differently. We need to:

1) Keep the next Ramadan as a deadline to achieving our goals.

2) Aim to improve ourselves even further during it so that we can achieve even bigger goals after it finishes.

I would suggest that we all listen to those pre-Ramadan lectures again. Also, please read this post. It’s very useful indeed, masha-Allah. I did that last year and that’s where I got the idea for this post from.

Lastly, please don’t get defeated before you even begin. Have good thoughts about Allah and ask Him to make you a great servant of His. Then, make a plan to achieve that.

Even if you die without having accomplished all your goals, you’ll at least have sincerely intended it, and perhaps Allah will reward you solely for those intentions.

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