BALANCE DEEN AND DUNYA:

Straight Truth about Balancing Time as a 21st Century Muslim

Today, I want to talk about the #1 most requested topic of all time:

How to manage your time as a Muslim and balance your Deen and Dunya.

I’m so excited for you because TODAY is a beautiful day to start building a balanced, successful life as a Muslim.

A life that gives you permission to spend time on yourself and your career- because now you are consistently making time for your Deen.

Where you begin your day energetic and focused and end it deeply satisfied with yourself because you were able to achieve in a SINGLE DAY that which you haven’t been able to achieve in WEEKS. *Whaaa*

Because THAT kind of barakah has entered your day. 

Where you are in better control of the way you spend your time. Not your wandering mind. Not Shaytan pulling the strings of your Nafs. But YOU. 

Because now you’re actually finishing everything that you need to do in a day, even when you don’t want to do it. Because THAT kind of discipline has now entered your day. 

And motivation? Oh, you are brimming with energy. You wake up excited for a new day and set a greater challenge for yourself than yesterday. Why? Because you know you can do it. 

I know. It all sounds too good to be true. 

But I’m here. And I’m telling you this: it’s absolutely possible. 

That’s because if I can do it, you can too. 

So what did I do that helped me find the time to: 

1. Grow closer to Allah S.W.T by dedicating time consistently to my Deen- Islam  

2. Continue pursuing Medicine (my career of choice); take multiple post-grad exams and work as a Doctor while growing MYP to thousands of monthly readers 

3. Have deep conversations and lots of fun with my family every day while doing all of that (because family is everything) 

4. Work on my SELF- develop better eating habits, exercise regularly, read my favorite books, and above all- do nothing but RELAX for a few hours everyday 

5. Make a bigger impact by helping Muslims from all around the globe with my online platform, aka… Muslim Youth Programme

 

MYP-Library of free downloads that I’ve created to help my readers overcome the barriers of “Nafs” by taking practical action steps.
This is what Allah S.W.T has blessed me with Alhamdulilah: A chance to share the work I’ve done on myself with thousands of others. 

But I wasn’t always like this. 7 years ago, when I was running fast in the rat race of career, I would sleep every day with an overbearing sense of guilt.

I’d think that I was a horrible Muslim who was spending so much time on her Dunya-related goals (in my case- ‘career’).

I wasn’t able to pray all 5 prayers on time or read Quran consistently and felt quite estranged from Islam.

And it wasn’t ‘doing everything’… It wasn’t just ‘working harder’ that got me to a better place. I experimented with ALL kinds of time-saving techniques and began assembling parts of a system.

And using that system, with the help of Allah S.W.T, I (finally) got rid of the habits that were destroying my productivity- procrastination, daydreaming, and laziness- once and for all.

Today I get more things done in a day than I previously could in a week. And over time, I even started to save hours from a day to have “ME-time”. Alhamdulillah.

That’s when I started getting asked this question a lot “How do you manage to do all these things in a day?” It made me realize that I was managing my time better than most Muslims who weren’t even busy.

And to double-check whether I had just gotten ‘lucky’, I tested a small part of the system on all kinds of Muslims… people of different ages, countries, careers, and intellects!

This is what happened when my students applied only one tiny part of the system that I teach in my course Balance Deen and Dunya:

…I love it that you show us that working for deen and for dunya is possible. That was my biggest fault, I was thinking that this both together are not possible in our generation. But you show me that this is possible and I’m so thankful, for your hard work– Humeyra

My biggest take away is to have action on goals and not goal achieving mind. And I love how you laid every step I really needed… simple and effective steps to take control of myself and my life, with Allah’s permission. I have been feeling lost and unfulfilled for the last year and so. My quest to [search] for a simple and effective plan led me to your videos– DAH

Assalam aleakum, your goal setting formula has really change a lot in my life since I started following it. May Allah reward you in this word and the hereafter– FATAI 

HOW TO BALANCE YOUR DEEN AND DUNYA

Starting today, I’m going to teach YOU how to balance your time between all your Deen and Dunya-related goals.

Not by applying random time-management tips picked off the internet or using the latest ‘productivity apps’ to help you stop procrastinating.

Instead, we’re going to create the much-needed balance in our day by using:

  • The exact time-management strategies, frameworks and tactics that work for you (even if you’re working a 9-to-5 job)
  • Daily systems to “prioritize” your tasks and get things DONE.
  • Advanced strategies to discipline your Nafs so you can complete goals you’ve started, start goals you’ve been putting off for a long time and do things you ‘should’ be doing even when you don’t want to (these strategies have deep psychology baked into them)
  • In-depth solutions to all time-wasting problems such as “procrastination” and “laziness” (that are derived from the Quran and Sunnah)

BUT WHY?

WHY THE NEED TO BALANCE OUR TIME?

There are PLENTY of Islamic sites out there teaching you the Tafseer of the Quran, Sunnah, Arabic, Fiqh etc. Why aren’t you studying from them and changing yourself? 

There’s BayyinahTV, Qalam Institute, UnderstandQuran, IOU and so many other great Islamic platforms teaching us Quran. 

Then why don’t you have a great connection with the Quran? Why don’t you have a great connection with Allah S.W.T? 

I’ve observed that we don’t need more informational sources of Quranic Tafseer to grow closer to our Deen and Allah S.W.T.  

Because no matter how many sources exist- if you don’t make time for them, they won’t benefit you. 

And for most of us- making time for our goals is the most difficult thing to do. 

Take another example– Prophet S.A.W had a deep meaningful relationship with his family. 

If there are so many authentic sources of Sunnah and Hadith on relationships and family, why don’t you have an open communication with your family? 

We all agree that every relationship takes work. Whether it’s with Allah S.W.T, your mom, your spouse or your friend.  

But what we forget is that- to give these relationships the best chance to work, you need to invest TIME.  

Do you have a friend to whom you say Salaam every now and then but don’t really stay in touch with? That’s fine. Because you don’t care much about developing a deep meaningful relationship with that person.  

But you care about your connection with Allah S.W.T. That’s why you’re here.

Then how can we expect to have a really close relationship with The Almighty Allah if you don’t make time for Allah S.W.T? 

TIME IS AT THE HEART OF TRUE SUCCESS IN ISLAM

Allah has defined success in many different Ayahs in the Quran attributing success to different acts of Ibadah. But at the heart of success is one fleeting object- time.

Look at this ayah: 

He has succeeded who purifies the soul, and he has failed who corrupts the soul. [Surah Ash-Shams 91: Ayahs 9-10]
Even the purification of soul requires >> Time. Doesn’t happen overnight.

 

In Surah al-Asr we are told:
By time, Indeed, mankind is in loss, Except for those who have believed and done righteous deeds and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience” [103:1-3].
Notice that in Surah Asr, Allah swears by time. And when Allah swears by something in the Quran, it means it’s SERIOUSLY important.  

But let’s dig a little deeper- Why does Allah S.W.T swear by time? And that too, right before He S.W.T. tells us about the 4 criteria of entering in Jannah and being successful?  

Obviously, Allah S.W.T is telling us that to have the slightest chance of following these criteria and making your way to Jannah, you need to make the best possible use of the biggest asset you’re given: TIME.  

And the much emphasis is because that asset is running out. Al-Asr: it literally means “Time that is running out” or The last part of time”. (Notice how Salat-al-Asr is during the last part of the day.)    

Truth is- it’s the only matter in this world that once gone, never comes back and that nobody can control or manage in the literal sense.

In another Ayah, Allah says:  

“Successful are the believers…those who stay away from lughw (things which waste time)” (Surah Mu’minoon 23:1 & 3)

Notice that He (S.W.T) is again associating “time” with “success”. He’s telling us that if we want to be successful Muslims, we better stay away from all things that waste our time- Lughw.  
In Surah Al-Imran He talks about patience, consistency and perseverance and how they are prerequisites to success.
Because even though a Muslim can do good deeds once in a while, the real challenge is doing them consistently. For that we’ll need patience & perseverance.  And all three- patience, perseverance and consistency are by-products of time.  

And although it has always seemed harder for millennial Muslims to even dream of living a balanced life like the Prophet S.A.W and his companions, I believe it can get easier with a little help from someone who relates to you.

 

You can build a different kind of life as a 21st Century Muslim

 

I remember I was ready to throw away even the thought of making time for my Deen at one point. I was so deeply frustrated with my relentless efforts to do everything I wanted to do in life as a Muslim, but getting nothing substantial done at the end of day.

So I’d finally settle on “there’s something wrong with me”.   

But when I looked around, I saw pains similar to my own. And for one brief moment, I would feel a sense of relief wash over me- I was not alone. 

Motivated again, I would go back to watching some more inspirational videos, downloading time-management apps and following the “Perfect routine” I had picked off the internet. And for a few days- life would be seemingly perfect.

I was organized, working out, learning about Islam regularly, praying on time and giving a solid 2 hours to the Quran everyday. I was managing my time the best I could. I would be proud.  

Then inevitably this would happen>> A small bump- an unconventional interruption, a sudden change of environment or an exam- and all my artisanally designed “PLAN” would fall apart. Like a wave of tsunami, a feeling of helplessness and INTENSE frustration would sweep away my “PERFECT DAY” and I would succumb back to binging shows.

This was my “Perfect Plan” from 6 years ago. (This page is taken from one of my old diaries)

 

Notice how I stopped following the plan “altogether” after some time. After all, can you blame me? 😀

And I wasn’t the only one. 

We would read up topics like: Time Management Tips. Work/ life Balance. Deen and Dunya. Productivity Hacks.

The problem was this: 

The secular productivity gurus would tell you all about apps, hacks, secret time-management methods & tactics. 

 

Then why did I feel like there was more to the story?

What about Nafs? And Shaytan?

I remember watching a Ted Talk about procrastination in which this guy – Tim Urban, said: “There’s an instant gratification monkey in your head that makes you procrastinate”. I laughed out loud at that. 😀 

Really? A MONKEY? That’s the best they could do?

The “more scientific” secular productivity gurus had a really predictable approach. They would spend decades just trying to find the cause of all these internal human struggles and finally settle on LA’ BRAIN. *eye-roll*

Anything that’s difficult to figure about the human psyche- make it about the brain. *scoff*

But Muslims had bigger fish to fry. We already KNEW the cause. It was Shaytan and our Nafs. Our belief system made that easy for us.  

So I knew only relying on these modern productivity techniques was not going to be enough. I’d go back to deep-diving into the ocean of knowledge. I would spend hours looking up “Islamic duas for productivity”. Or “Time management in Islam”.  

I’d find material on “the importance of time in the Quran”. 

Thing is– I wasn’t looking for material on the importance of time! I ALREADY KNEW the importance- that’s why I was looking to manage my time better in the first place! *F-R-U-S-T-R-A-T-I-O-N*

I’d find motivational quotes from Ibn- Qayyim, Ayahs and Ahadith, and they would get me all motivated. But it wouldn’t be long before I’d swing back to my old ways. 

All this time, I was learning.

I LEARNED THREE THINGS:  

# 1 I realized that information alone COULD never be enough to make the best use of my time.

If it was, why were we still stuck? We can get all the information we need today in a blink.

Because like the psychologist BJ FOGG says, if information alone was enough, all of us should be able to change our behavior easily.

Nobody wants to procrastinate. 

Nobody wants to be lazy and unmotivated. 

Above all, nobody really wants to waste time.

We just don’t know how to change our behavior.   

# 2 Despite the fact that the internet was OVERLOADED with information, it was also missing a key ingredient: how?

How could I apply all of that information to my personal life?? What worked for someone else might not work for me. 

# 3 I decided that there had to be a way that combined the modern productivity techniques with the belief system of a Muslim.

A system that “weaved” the psychology of Nafs into the scientific time-management info.  

And that’s exactly what I did.

I didn’t want to make an encyclopedia full of productivity tips and methods!  

I spent hundreds of hours just studying the invisible psychological barriers- the limiting beliefs that were shaping our actions (or the lack thereof). But more on that later. 

I dug deeper into the WHY of all our problems. I took the Doctor’s approach of “DIAGNOSING” the underlying cause of our shackles.   

Did I figure out “a magic formula” or made a “groundbreaking discovery”? Of course not. 😀 But I did learn what I needed to know about the missing ingredient: how 

I started testing a portion of that information by creating practical tools that would help my readers in everyday life.

And overtime strange unexpected things started happening: those methods actually started working!!

I couldn’t believe it. I started receiving emails like “I feel like you’re reading my mind”  *gasp*

There was no greater feeling than knowing that my material was changing the lives of other Muslims. Alhamdulilah.

I have painstakingly compiled all that I’ve learned about making REAL time for Deen as a professional Muslim from my 7 year-long experimenting, 9-months of deep psychological dives, and 2500+ hours of time & energy invested in the making of the Balance Deen and Dunya system. 

And now I want to share all that I’ve learned- with you.

 I WANT TO HELP YOU FIND:

THE DIRECTION

I want to show you what’s important and what’s not. Where to start and what to do next. So what if you don’t have any major goals in life? I want to show you how to find the confidence and purpose to live a meaningful life even without any apparently “big” goals. 

 

THE FLEXIBILITY

You have goals and dreams you want to follow in this Dunya? I want to show you how to create the flexibility in your time to follow your career in Dunya without losing connection to Allah S.W.T periodically. 

 

AND PEACE OF MIND

I want to help you find the sense of self-satisfaction that can only come if you’ve spent your day in a way that you’re actually proud of.

I CAN HELP YOU BUILD A DIFFERENT KIND OF LIFE

YES! I am here to help you create balance in your day. This series is all about time-management and productivity. You can expect a lot of GOODNESS along your way! 😉 InshaAllah.

Here’s a brief overview of what you can expect from this series of articles>>

  • Time-management models [including the one that will be best for you]
  • 3 things you can do to bring massive amounts of Barakah in your day
  • The biggest mistakes you might be making that KILL your productivity [and how to change that]
  • The best strategies for managing your time well
  • How to GROW your time [yes, time-growth is not an airy fairy concept, it’s totally REAL]
  • And MUCH more…

SO ARE YOU READY TO START SPENDING YOUR TIME THE RIGHT WAY?

I’ve put together some of my very best material on time management for you but before I send you more of it, get started by joining my email list>>>

Remember- you CAN build a different kind of life as a 21st Century Muslim. One that gives you the flexibility, the freedom and the peace of mind to follow your dreams for Dunya and Akhirah. InshaAllah.

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3 Keys to getting closer to Allah S.W.T. as a working Muslim

 

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