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Ultimate Ramadan Survival Guide

by Musa Bukhari

Ramadan is a mighty blessing given to us by Allah to fortify the landscape of our hearts. It is a time where we turn to Allah and ask for healing and guidance within our lives. We fast, we pray, we read the Quran, we give charity, we attend the night prayers. We immerse ourselves in the different acts of worship with the goal of attaining closeness to Him. However for many of us, Ramadan can be tiring. We become fatigued and it can take its toll. If you are struggling, we have compiled a survival guide to aid you in this month, so you can excel at the highest level, inshallah. Below, we listed some information to help you refresh your understanding and renew your intentions so you can have a deeper, more meaningful Ramadan.

Ramadan Vocabulary

Here are some common words used during Ramadan:

Sawm - Fast

Sehri - The time before Fajr when Muslims wake up to eat.

Iftar - The time when Muslims break their fast after sunset, Maghrib adhan.

Sadaqah - Voluntary charity

Zakat - Obligatory charity

Kaffarah - If you don’t fast or break your fast without a valid reason kaffarah is the compensation you should pay in the form of money or the duty to fast for 60 consecutive days.

Fidya - Is what you would pay if you are unable to fast due to a valid reason, like health concerns, pregnancy, or old age. You would pay for someone to be fed on your behalf.

I’tikaf - When you spend the last ten days of Ramadan (either wholly or partly) in a mosque, devoting yourself exclusively to acts of worship. You do not engage in any worldly activities.

Laylat al-Qadr - This marks the Night of Power, hidden within one of the odd nights in the final ten days of Ramadan. According to the Qur’an, this night is deemed to be 'better than a thousand months' (97:3).

Halaqah - When a group of people come together to learn and discuss Islam.

Eid al-Fitr - This is the festival marking the end of Ramadan. It happens when the moon is sighted for the new month.

Tarawih - These are extra night prayers during Ramadan. They happen right after isha prayer and the goal is to read all 30 Juz over the course of the month. . Qiyamul-layl - Spending the night, or part of it (any amount you can do), in prayer, reading the Qur’an, remembering Allah (dhikr) and partaking in other acts of worship.

Tahajjud - Waking up in the last third of the night and worshiping Allah.

What to Do and What Not to Do


● Make sure you eat a good healthy breakfast in the morning

● Spend your free time remembering Allah

● Have attainable goals, like memorizing a surah or reading 5 pages of Quran everyday

● Revaluate your life and what you can do to improve

● Get plenty of rest

● Work towards understanding your deen and incorporating better practices

● Attend Tarawih and spending more time in the masjid

● Stay fit by going for walks

● Seek Allah’s mercy and do things that are pleasing to Him

● Stay away from oily and greasy food


● Revolve your day thinking about food

● Overeating at iftar

● Waste time by watching TV and idle talk

● Waste food

● Do things that are displeasing to Allah

● Just do the basics

Tips for the Introvert and the Extrovert

Introvert: If you are an introvert, the social aspect of Ramadan can be hard. Ramadan is about spending time by yourself and also spending time with your community. Here are a few things you can do to help you get the most out of this month:

● Spend time immersing yourself in the Quran.

● There are countless Islamic books you can read to help you learn about the religion and yourself.

● Try to go for walks and observe the nature around you. There are so many lessons you can learn.

● Listen to lectures.

● Go to the Masjid and attend Tarawih prayer. It doesn’t have to be social; you can pray in a group and then come home.

● Have iftar with your close family and friends

Extrovert: If you are an extrovert it can be hard to engage in worship by yourself because you enjoy being surrounded by people. Here are some things you can do to get the most out of this month:

● Attend Halaqas, you can learn valuable insights from other people and also share your own.

● Have iftar at the Masjid.

● Attend Tarawih prayer

● Spend more time at the Masjid

● Do Ithikhaf. Challenge yourself to spend the last 10 nights of Ramadan in worship. But this way you won’t be completely alone as you will be with other people who are doing the same thing.

● Motivate your friends to do a Quran challenge. See how many pages you can read each day. It's an activity you will do by yourself but you are being held accountable by your friends.

How to Keep Your Energy Levels Up

In Ramadan it can be hard to keep your energy levels up. Make sure you eat a good healthy sehri in the morning so that your body will naturally keep up its energy levels. You can incorporate sunnah foods like dates, barley, watermelon, olives, honey, and cucumbers for your breakfast. The more natural foods you eat the more energy you will have. Also be sure to drink a lot of water and eat hydrating foods to keep hydrated throughout the day.

It will be helpful to plan your meals in advance.

Example sehri to Eat:

Boiled Eggs




English muffin




It can be tempting to indulge in a lot of food for iftar but this will make it harder for you to engage in worship afterwards. You will also be impacting your sehri if you overeat. What you eat at night will impact what you eat for sehri, thus impacting how you feel during the day. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enjoy your iftar but make sure you eat in moderation and eat foods that are light and not so heavy.

*One Key Tip: When going grocery shopping while fasting make a list so you won’t be tempted to impulse buy what you are craving.

Memorise this dua, it is a GAME CHANGER.

اَللَّهُمَّ إِنَّكَ عَفْوٌ تٌحِبٌّ العَفْوَ فَأَعْفَوْ عَنِّي

Allahumma innaka afuwwun tuhibbul ‘afwa fa’fu anni’

It was narrated from 'Aishah that she said: "O Messenger of Allah, what do you think I should say in my supplication, if I come upon Laylatul-Qadr?" He said: "Say: 'Allahumma innaka 'afuwwun tuhibbul-'afwa, fa'fu 'anni (O Allah, You are Forgiving and love forgiveness, so forgive me).'"

(Sunan Ibn Majah 3850)

This guide is here to act as a simple basic structure on how to make the most of your Ramadan. You can always do more. Inshallah with the right intentions and the right company Allah will make this the best Ramadan.

Do what works best for you, whether it be reading Quran, paying sadaqah, doing dhikr. Don’t feel constricted to only doing one thing, diversify your deeds. These nights are for us. May Allah bless our Ramadan and accept our ibadah, may He strengthen our bond with Him and allow us to taste the sweetness of eeman, Aameen.

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