Allahu Akbar! 4 Ways to Avoid Being Procrastinators

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  1. The_truth
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    4 Ways to Avoid Being Procrastinators


    In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most merciful.


    Firstly what is procrastination? Procrastination is defined as "the action of delaying or postponing something".

    So for example when we have commited a sin, shaythan will whisper to us "there's no need to repent right now, you will repent later on". Or he whispers "Do the sin just one more time then after that you can repent and change". Then what happens is the sin never does stop but we keep doing it until it becomes a daily or regular habit that we cannot stop.

    Or when we want to adopt a good habit like pray on time, awaken for Fajr, recite Qur'an; "You will do these good things but not now, do it after so and so or after your exams, or this project you need to complete".

    Therefore is no doubt that procrastination is one of the biggest causes of us losing time and the opportunity to repent and do good deeds. So it is crucial that we find ways or strategies to immediately overcome this detrimental behaviourial trait otherwise we will continue procrastinating until our time is up and our soul is taken.

    Almighty Allah says in the Qur’an: “Until, when death comes to one of them , he says: “My Lord! Send me back. “So that I may do good in that which I have left behind!” No! It is but a word that he speaks, and behind them is Barzakh (a barrier) until the Day when they will be resurrected.” Surat ul-Mu’minun : 99-100

    What a wasted life that would be that we were prevented from doing good and gaining closeness to Allah and forgiveness from him because we kept delaying and putting it off. This is the one chance we have to get the closest to Allah and gain the highest ranks in the Hereafter so we cannot allow procrastination to continue!

    So make a firm resolve right now that you will try your best to implement the following 3 things to help us overcome procrastination so that we can be the best we can be in this life so we can have the best life of this world and the Hereafter!

    1. Create a sense of urgency by remembering death often:



    We must realise that death can come to us at any moment and any age. Regardless of our health or situation in life. Death does not discriminate. It will take us no matter where we are or what we are doing. It can come whilst we are doing good or whilst we are doing evil.

    Therefore we must ensure we ask of Allah to take us only whilst we are doing good and therefore we need to ensure that we are always doing good so that we have more chance to be taken whilst we are doing good. If we are always remembering our mortality and death then we will naturally always be careful about our actions and more likely to think that will this or that action benefit me or harm me. Therefore we will turn away from that which will harm us and turn towards that which will benefit us.


    2. Pray as soon as the prayer begins



    Procrastination with prayers is one of the major sins as it causes us to delay the prayer beyond its time and often miss the prayer whilst doing other things of lesser value. Therefore we must start praying all of our prayers as soon as they begin or at last as soon as the Adhan is called for that particular prayer.

    If we keep doing this over and over again then it will eventually be instilled into our behaviour and enable us to reassure ourselves that we are someone who does not procrastinate and therefore we can implement this in all other aspects of our lives where procrastination may be an issue such as with lateness. We can begin doing this by making a weekly or monthly target sheet where we tick the prayers each day that we have prayed on time and evaluate ourselves at the end of each day and learn from any mistakes. That way we will become better and better at praying on time each day regardless of the situation like if we are out, at work etc.

    3. Implement the "5 minute rule".


    So if you have a task that you have to accomplish but you cannot do it all at once then at least do 5 minutes of it. Like for example if you want to memorise the Qur'an then instead of spending an hour or so memorising a few ayah's then just spend 5 minutes memorising. If you want to read an Islamic book but keep putting it off then just pick one up then read it for 5 minutes. If you want to do any good deed but cant get yourself do it right now then just do it for 5 minutes.

    By doing this constantly we can eventually overcome this automatic block that comes into action as soon as we have a good intention or thought to do a good act. It is better to do a little good than to do none at all. Always go with the first good thouht. Just say to yourself "I will do it just for 5 minutes". You may find you will end up doing it for longer but even if you dont then at least you have done the good act even though it was for a short while.


    4. Become a planner and write things down!



    Planning and scheduling the way we spend our time each day can help us overcome "mental block" and living our lives "going with the flow". It can make us much more efficient with the most valuable asset we have "time"!

    So invest in a good diary big enough to give us enough space to be able to write down in reasonable detail what we plan to do each day. Do this prefferabley the night before or if not then first thing. Plan and schedule everything including sleep and wake up times, prayer times, breakfast, snack, lunch, dinner times, times where we will relax etc, allocate short slots for dhikr, reciting Qur'an, memorising Ayah's adhkar etc.

    By doing this we are reducing the ill effects of procrastination which mostly stems from being unprepared. But be careful not to go over the top. Allocate shorter slots for good deeds at the beginning and gradually build up. Ensure you give yourself enough time for yourself. Most important of all ensure you are sleeping early and awakening early. This is crucial for helping overcome procrastination as you wil have more time in the day to do things.

    Also get into the habit of noting down things. This could be how you are feeling, or what is stopping you from doing a certain good action. By putting your feelings and thoughts onto paper you can get things into perspective much easier as things become more clearer and therefore you are also more likely to be able to reduce distractions and specifiy the areas of procrastination you need to work on that are having a detrimental affect on your life.

    Lastly,

    The Prophet (Sallallāhu 'Alaihi Wasallam) gave us a beautiful Dua in order to help us overcome all kinds of mental obstacles that prevent us from reaching our full potential in our spiritual and worldly lives. Therefore we should all learn this Dua and recite it at least once each day and InshaAllah we will immediately notice the difference in our productivity:

    “Allahumma inni ‘a’udhubika minal hammi walhuzni, Wal’ajzi walkasali, walbukhli waljubni, Wa dal’id-daiyni wa ghalabatir-rajal.”

    ‘O Allah, I take refuge in You from anxiety and sorrow, weakness and laziness, miserliness and cowardice, the burden of debts and from being over powered by men.’ [Bukhari]


    May Allah give us the ability to overcome procrastination and laziness and not allow it to supress the good we want to do and enable us to live our lives getting closer to him, constantly asking for his forgiveness and enable us to die whilst we are doing good and have made significant gains for the Hereafter. Ameen

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