Twelve Ways for Moms to Beat the Routine (Part I)
By: By Manal Hatab

Part I

Life is about the mundane for most of us moms. We wake up early in the morning to a strict schedule of school duty and chores. Many of us juggle between work and household duties, with hardly any support. As a mom, I am constantly looking for windows of opportunities to improve my condition and keep my emotional well-being in check. There are twelve suggestions in this series—for my fellow mothers—to break an unyielding routine and infuse some meaning and order into it!

 

  1. Master a Skill

Human beings are created with different capabilities and means for ingenuity. It is important to realize those capabilities and cultivate them. I personally find solace and empowerment in writing, as I look forward to harnessing my intellectual energy into an orderly piece of work. Writing has proved to be a great outlet for me. Consequently, I advise mothers to tap into their hidden skills and experience a sense of worth by channeling them into purposeful activities. It is important to pursue and practice skills with the correct intention. Whether it is critical reading, public speaking, sewing, managing charitable events, organizing school activities, sharing professional expertise, or advocating for a cause close to her heart, each mother will find tremendous fulfillment in mastering a unique skill with the intention to create beauty around her and benefit others in her community. Involvement of any sort takes up time and requires that we are time conscious.

 “Oh Allah! Purify my intentions so that I only seek your pleasure and accept my good deeds.”

  1. Be Time Conscious

Imam Shafi’i (may God be pleased with him) is quoted to have said: “Time is like a sword: if you don’t cut it, it will cut you.” Time management is empowerment. It is of essence, especially in planning the course of the day and snatching those few minutes to discover our potential and to rectify our spiritual states. I find myself constantly multitasking, and I am exhausted towards the end of the day. Every mother needs time to take care of her physical and emotional wellbeing; otherwise, she will be overburdened with life’s stressors and eventually lose focus. Plan everyday for some physical activity and attempt to meet a simple goal for self-improvement. A planner always comes in handy, as well as a checklist of goals. More importantly, supplicating for a blessed day, in which time is not squandered and each minute is invested in what is beneficial, makes a big difference. Personalize your morning supplications to reflect your daily objectives. Pray for yourself, family, friends and community.

 “O Allah, make the start of this day amendment, its middle prosperity and its end success.”

 

  1. Be Active and Healthy

Exercise is great in controlling anxiety and general fatigue. Whether it is aerobics or walking, engage in the type of exercise that will keep you going for the day.

Being vigilant about diet is equally important. There is a lot of literature on nutrition but a good start is to cut down on processed foods and avoid sugar, except for what originates from fresh fruits and vegetables. The elimination of processed food is key to a wonderful boost of energy. Whatever you do, make baby steps and instill changes gradually. Major changes can cause us to lose interest quickly. The Messenger of Allah (peace be unto him) said: “By the One in whose hand is the soul of Muhammad, the believer is like a bee which eats that which is pure and wholesome and lays that which is pure and wholesome. When it lands on something it does not break or ruin it.” (Ahmad)

The bee approaches the flower with gentleness, takes only the precious nectar, and gives pure honey. Similarly, the believer eats wholesome and pure food and takes his portion without conspicuous consumption. Buzz your way through a daily routine of clean eating, ample gentleness towards the environment, and lots of dhikr (remembrance).

 “O Allah, make me healthy in my body. O Allah, preserve for me my hearing. O Allah, preserve for me my sight. There is none worthy of worship but You.”

 

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