Time Management from the Sunnah

The Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) said; “ There are two gifts from among the gifts of Allah wherein humanity is deceived. They are health and free time.” I will discuss health at another time, but this post is about time management. This subject is a pet peeve of mines. After years of struggling with managing my time, I am so grateful to Allah that I have learned how to utilize my time for maximum benefit. Michael Hart wrote a book in 1978 titled; The 100, Ranking of the Most Influential. This book is about 100 of the most influential people in history. Michael Hart was a Jewish American that attended Cornell and Princeton. He held a PhD in Physics. His book sold more than 500,000 copies and was translated into 15 different languages. The first person on his list surprised readers at that time. That person was none other than our beloved Prophet Muhammad (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam). One quote from the book states; “Muhammad was supremely successful in both the religious and secular realms.” So in other words our prophet (“Muhammad was supremely successful in both the religious and secular realms.” So in other words our Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) was successful in deen and dunya. Many Muslims are successful in only one or the other but rarely both. This is a great motivation for me. Before I didn’t like being busy. Probably because I was raised in an environment that feels “busy” is wrong or unhealthy. I can not count the number of times I this conversation at work; “How’s your day going?” And the responder follows up with a sad look on his face; “busy and hectic man!” When my wife tells me that she had a busy day at home, My follow up is; “busy is good.” Muslims should take pride in being busy. This means we are accomplishing something and being productive insha Allah. I am worried about the person that is not busy, the one that has too much free time on his hands. When I call my brother and I get voice mail, or we play phone tag, I think to myself, “ masha Allah he is productive.” I personally have a very busy life. I am first of all a husband and father of two; I am employed full time, a full time graduate student, and a regular Khatib for Jumuah and Taleem. I am also involved with other activities within the community. With all of this, I still work out 7 days per week and spend quality time with my family. I sincerely believe this is a result of my scheduling my life around Salah. My day starts at 4:30 am 7 days per week. I am thankful that I can start my day out with Tahajjud. One scholar said; A busy life makes prayer difficult, but prayer makes a busy life easy. I am grateful that I never need coffee or tea to wake up. I don’t even drink the poison. My entire day is full of energy and vigor because of prayer and exercise. I will write about this in a latter post Insha Allah.

The Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) was supremely successful in deen and dunya. How could he do it? The messenger and last prophet of Allah (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) was active as a social reformer, diplomat, businessman, philosopher, orator, legislator, military leader, husband and father. Wow, many people cannot even accomplish being a great husband and father. I believe he was able to do it because he made effective use of his time. Time management is a quality of very successful people. Success is not an accident. Insha Allah I will follow up with part II on time management within the next couple of days. My plan is to show examples of how our Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) managed his time, and what he said about time. I decided that it was time for me to be productive in my life and the Sunnah was the best way to go.