As the holy month draws near, all of us are busy preparing for Ramadhan. It’s important that we finish all what needs to be done before Ramadhan so that we don’t end up wasting even one precious moment of the holy month.
You can whip up a quick Ramadhan preparation checklist to help you get through it all as well. Here are a few simple steps to help you prepare for Ramadhan.
1) Finish All Pending Fasts
If you had missed any fasts during the previous Ramadhan, now is the time to complete them. If you are unable (due to reasons such as pregnancy, travel, sickness, etc.) then it is advisable that you pay Fidyah, which is a compensation for not fasting, where you must feed the poor.
Fidya is not applicable to the poor. Those who are young and healthy can complete their fasts when whatever is stopping them from doing so now is over.
“(Fasting for) a limited number of days. So, whoever among you is ill or on a journey (during them) - then an equal number of days (are to be made up). And upon those who are able [to fast, but with hardship - a ransom (as substitute) of feeding a poor person (each day) ….” – [Qur’an 2:184]
2) Make the Intention
The intention is the basis of everything a Muslim does. He will be punished or rewarded according to what he intended upon happening with whatever his actions are. We must always do everything with the hopes of pleasing Allah, and nothing else. Similarly, we must make the intention that we go into this Ramadhan with the intention of fasting for Allah and doing all other deeds for Allah alone.
3) Clean the House
The purpose is to get as many chores done in preparation for Ramadhan so you won’t need to do them during the month. One such chore is cleaning the house. Set aside a day to do a complete cleaning of the house. You can also collect some used clothes and things in the process to be given away for charity during Ramadhan.
4) Get Your Shopping Done
All of us are excited about Eid, even before Ramadhan begins, but don’t let that be your sole focus during the month. Add shopping to the top of your Ramadhan preparation checklist, and get your clothes and gift shopping out of the way so you can focus on getting the most out of the holy month.
It’s also a good idea to get your grocery shopping done a week or so before Ramadhan begins. Obviously, you can’t store fresh fruits and vegetables for an entire month. But you can buy and store lots of other ingredients like dried beans, flour, sugar, oil, etc.
5) Pre-Make Meals
We also tend to spend way too much time in the kitchen during Ramadhan. And sometimes, you can’t help it when you have to feed an entire family all by yourself! That’s why a great idea for what to do before Ramadhan is to pre-make some food.
You can make large batches of food and store them in the freezer in individual portions, so when the time comes you can just take out one of them and heat them through! Soups, curries (without the use of coconut), and pickled vegetables are few that come to mind.
6) Visit the Doctor
Another thing to add to your Ramadhan preparation checklist is a visit to your doctor. If you are having some concerns, discussing them with your doctor and treating them beforehand will save you a lot of trouble during Ramadhan.
If you have a longstanding disease like cholesterol, diabetes, or high blood pressure, then you have to visit your doctor anyway. If you are already taking medication, then your doctor will be able to advise you on how to revise the timings to fit into the fasting day.
7) Clear Your Schedule
If you have a standing lunch with your girlfriends, or a weekly night out with your buddies, it’s best you cancel them during the month of Ramadhan. Make sure whatever you need done is taken care of, and whatever you can put off until after Ramadhan can be set aside.
8) Prepare a Ramadhan Checklist
This is a way great way to maximize productivity during Ramadhan. Having your “goals” listed out in a checklist will help keep you on track. You can set the tasks out yourself, so you know you can do them, which will give you the motivation to complete all the tasks. Daily checklists for what needs to be done every day, while monthly checklist will list goals meant to be completed by the end of Ramadhan.
For more information about how to prepare a Ramadhan checklist, check out HalalTrip’s “A Must-Have Ramadhan Checklist for Every Muslim” article.
9) Print Out Some Ramadhan Supplications
One of the things that you can do in preparation for Ramadhan is to get some duas and supplications that you can print out and hang around the house. This way, whenever you look at them, you will be reminded to recite them.
If you have kids, you can even make it a fun pre-Ramadhan project for them; they can decorate frames and write the duas themselves. Not only will this keep them occupied, it will also encourage them to learn the duas themselves.
10) Gather Information
Get your local prayer timings, along with iftar and fajr timings and hang them up in your house. Check your neighborhood and the local mosques to find out when and where Taraweeh prayers are taking place. Find out about any Ramadhan programs or sermons in your locality so you can make time to participate in them. You can even go to any pre-Ramadhan programs or sermons to learn more about how to prepare for Ramadhan.