Week 1: Ramadhan 2023

It’s been one week since Ramadhan started and I wanted to share how I feel, what I have learned and what I want to try and work on. Ramadhan is a time of great reflection for me.

Being hungry, and feeling thirsty leaves me with a sense of inner combat - at first this is hard but I have found it gets easier as time passes. For example, the first fast by noon I felt low energy. I felt like it was not going to be possible to continue the rest of the day, at least without water.

I found my hunger impacting how I was performing professionally, and interacting with my colleagues.

I found myself irritable and upset.

I thought about it a bit more, that day and the days since.

Angry at what?

I really didn't have a good answer. No one was making me do this, and no one would know if i didn't keep my fast. I found myself angry at the feeling of being hungry, not actually at being hungry.

What I had thought was hunger was actually, and this is surprising, boredom. I am so used to eating at defined times. Eating is part of the social fabric of my day. I was also less active, so I know metabolically my energy levels had not actually depleted.

I was angry because I felt hungry. And I felt hungry because I was bored. The first week of Ramadhan has taught me that the greatest gift I get back while fasting is time. If I can find ways to be productive, use agendas and time blocks in my day, and plan what I want to execute, I have so much more time to do it. I have started to do it, and will share with you how I time block my Ramadhan days in an upcoming video post.

But my output has increased by about 15% and I find myself with a greater sense of focus. But this required me accepting that I was taking on the challenge of fasting.

Once I accepted, surrendered, embraced and owned this task - I realized that it’s not a fight anymore. It’s a gift.

With love, peace and sending you my best during Ramadhan,

Heba 🕊