As we all know, Ramadan is not just a physical fast where we abstain from food and water. It is much more than that. It is spiritual, the submission to a higher authority, our creator. It is the path to self-improvement, to embrace a life.
Reflections â€“ Structured approach
We all make many changes to our daily routine during this holy month. But often, we get back to normal routine as soon as the month is over. So, before this month comes to an end, we must take some time to reflect upon ourselves, our physical and spiritual well-being with the aim of trying to incorporate some of these changes into our daily routine.
Reflection, if followed by a structured approach is a lot more beneficial. Here are some techniques which will help you in achieving maximum out of your reflection exercise
Thank Allah(swt) for health and well being
Expressing gratitude and thanking the Almighty is something that brings inner peace and happiness. So, thank Him for blessing you with good health as well as the mental strength to prepare yourself for Ramadan and for being able to observe the fasts.
What were the additional activities that you included in your schedule during Ramadan?
Start your reflection by making a note of all the additional activities that you included as a part of your daily schedule during this Holy month. It could be changes you made to your diet like eating healthier or more home cooked meals or trying to memorize Surahâ€™s of the Holy Quran or increasing your charitable activities. Make a note of all the positive changes that you have made.
How has that benefitted and impacted you
Once you have made sure to include all activities, then reflect upon the benefits that you have achieved â€“ Spiritual, physical, mental etc. Then rate these activities based on the ease to incorporate them in daily schedule post Ramadan and the benefits achieved by making it a habit.
Plan to include at least one of them post Ramadan
Once you have prioritized these activities resolve to include one activity for each benefit â€“ physical, spiritual, and mental. If that is too much, then based on your needs you should choose at least one activity and plan it in your daily schedule post Ramadan. Talk about your intention to Allah(swt) and ask his help to be able to successfully make this change.
Benefits of reflecting and expressing gratitude
- There are many psychological benefits to being grateful and reflecting on your month. These include feeling happier and lowering stress and planning towards an improved lifestyle.
- Reflective practice has huge benefits in increasing self-awareness. It can also help to developÂ creative thinking skills as well as keep you motivated
- It helps improve concentration and focus
- There is also scientific evidence that expressing genuine gratitude can improve physical health as well by improving quality of sleep, cardiovascular health and immune function
- Gratitude promotes optimism and helps us to develop a more positive outlook.
So make sure you make a habit of one of the good practices that you have started following this Ramadan and you will definitely see an improved and happier life.