By: Zaghra Savahl
In a few days time, Muslims around the world will be observing the Holy month of Ramadan. It is the most important month in the Islamic calendar as not only is it a time where blessings and rewards are increased, but it is also the month in which the Holy Qur`an was revealed.
The following Qur`an verse says: “Ramadan is the (month) in which was sent down the Qur’an as a guide to mankind also clear (Signs) for guidance and judgment (between right and wrong). So everyone of you who is present (at his home) during that month should spend it in fasting but if anyone is ill or on a journey the prescribed period (should be made up) by days later. God intends every facility for you He does not want to put you to difficulties. (He wants you) to complete the prescribed period and to glorify Him in that He has guided you; and perchance ye shall be grateful.” (Surah Al Baqarah: Ayah 185)
During Ramadan, Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset every day. As citizens that contribute to the economy, Muslims need to balance their daily work with that which is required of them while observing fasting. Although this can be testing, here are five ways in which you can manage your workday during Ramadan to ensure balance:
1. Prepare in Advance
Keep track of your Islamic calendar. Leading up to Ramadan, find out the approximate dates for when fasting will begin and check your work schedule during that time. This helps to mentally prepare yourself, especially for workdays that might be overwhelming. It also gives you an opportunity to finish as much as you can in advance so that you can alleviate some of the pressure when the time comes.
2. Communicate with your Co-workers
Depending on the organization you work for, this is more of a courtesy than an actual requirement. Some co-workers that are not informed of Islamic practices might not even be aware about what the month of Ramadan entails and means to Muslims. Your co-workers that work closely with you will appreciate you telling them in advance, especially if you are planning to take leave for Eid-Ul-Fitr (the conclusion of the month of Ramadan). If you work in an understanding environment that encourages diversity, this is a great way to connect with your team and let them know why you won`t be eating with them during lunch breaks for the next month.
3. Time Management is essential
Because there is an increase of blessings and the
gates of Jannah being open for the whole month, Muslims dedicate extra time for acts of worship. To accommodate the requirements of your workday, time management is essential. Allocate time to work on tasks when you know your mental alertness is high and consistent. An ideal time to work on your tasks or goals is immediately after Suhoor and during the evening after Iftar. You would have just finished a meal and prayer, which means your focus and alert levels are in a good state for work. Capitalize on these moments to get some of your work done.
4. Opt for filling meals for Suhoor and Iftar that will keep you going for longer
If you can, have meals for Suhoor and Iftar with a slow energy release that can fuel you for longer and increase your mental alertness. One of the things that need to be emphasized on is the importance of drinking water. Drink lots of water to keep you hydrated for those long hours without food and drink. Fatigue will set in but being conscious of feeding your brain during these times can help increase your focus for your workday.
5. Maximise work breaks with acts of Ibaadat (worship)
Usually for workers, their breaks are an ideal time to eat, meet up with a friend, take a walk, or do anything that will re-energise them before they get back to work. For the month of Ramadan, why not use these breaks for Ibaadat (acts of worship)? Aim to get closer to Allah (SWT) as this will keep you mentally strong and calm. It is also a form of meditation that can help you to re-focus so that you can give your best when getting back to work.
The month of Ramadan is a testing but rewarding and fulfilling experience. It serves to reflect and increase your good deeds for the sake of Allah (SWT). The more you do things for the sake of Allah (SWT), the more Barakah will be granted to you, including in your work.