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Author: admin_kt

Setting S.M.A.R.T Expectations in Ramadan and Beyond

The day I converted to Islam, which happened to be the first day of Ramadan, I whipped myself into ‘shape’ immediately. On that first day, I began to pray 5 times a day, wear hijab, fast and read Qur’an. My first 30 days of Ramadan whizzed by, leaving me dizzy and exhausted. Not eating or drinking from dawn to dusk and struggling to meet my religious obligations was a balancing act to which I was not familiar. It left me staying up all night, sleeping during the day between classes and skipping one too many meals. I even passed out in the middle of a science lecture! Frustrated with my ‘failure’, I vowed to do better the following year. In retrospect, my unrealistic expectations put me on the fast track to spiritual burnout.

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My First Solo Travel Experience (Muscat, Oman)

Although I had traveled to umrah “alone” (within a tour group), I hadn’t ever ventured very far without a safety net. I made the decision that I was going to travel on a “starter” solo trip. Throughout my time in the Kingdom, I’ve heard whispers about the people of Oman…murmurings of soothsayers, amulets, and the evil eye. When I inquired about traveling alone to Muscat, I was met with reactions ranging from highly positive (“It is so beautiful there!”) to the eerily negative (“They are really into black magic there. You’d better be careful! They can make people disappear…”).

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