Have you ever told yourself, I’m going to read at least half an hour of the Quran each day, only to find out your “Quran habit” didn’t stick? Motivation naturally decreases with time. Here the importance of habit comes in.
Once your new habit is established you are less dependent on motivation and willpower to do it. 95% of your life is dictated by the subconscious mind— the part of your brain that runs activities on autopilot, like brushing your teeth, getting dressed, etc., without thinking about it. Here are four ways to create a new neural pathway for your daily Quran habit!
1. Start Small
Big goals are exciting, but small, “boring” goals are more likely to bring success. Small actions trick your brain. Your subconscious likes to be in control; it doesn’t like change, and a big change often sets up resistance.
Read at least one verse a day and interact with it. Open the Quran and just pick one verse. Read it, translate it if needed, and, most important, feel it.
For example, if the verse about Paradise, be there in your mind and imagine what you would see. If it’s about Hellfire, imagine the pain and regret. If it’s part of a story, like the story of Yusuf (peace be upon him), be a spectator.
2. Use Triggers
Pick a time which normally suits you best to read Quran. If you commit to always reading five minutes before you go to bed, then after a few weeks you’ll automatically think about reading before you go to sleep. Visual triggers work well too.
Have a Quran lying around wherever you are. You can have Quran in the bedroom, living room, and kitchen. Having the Quran next to your bed will encourage you to read when you go to bed in the evening.
3. Make it Convenient
Make your reading comfortable; sit in a comfortable position and relax. The more comfortable you make your reading, the more likely you will stick to it.
4. Don’t Break the Chain
A writer started the habit of writing new material daily using a wall calendar and a marker. Every day he managed to write he would put a big red X on the calendar. He didn’t want to see any blank days that “broke the chain,” so this encouraged him to write each day.
Try this for one month, insha’Allah!
That’s the Quran habit in your life, but what about all those others? Our friend asked this question, too:
“Did you distribute a Quran to those who don’t have one? If I can gift five Qurans every month, then I will be gifting 60 Qurans per year. If I am 60 years old, then I could have gifted 1200 Quran in the past 20 years! Can you make up what you didn’t give in the last 20, 10 or even 5 years?
The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
The best among you are those who learn the Quran and teach it. (Al-Bukhari)