Tips to prepare and make the most out of your Ramadan1. Watch and Read about Ramadan and its Virtues
Naturally, the more you learn about something, the more you become fond and excited about it. Imagine spending days learning the life and legacy of a particular scholar and then being told that you would get a chance to actually meet him. You won't be able to contain your excitement and eagerness. We want to have the same feeling towards Ramadan. We want feel excited and pumped up for this blessed month.2. Make Dua to Reach Ramadan
The companions used to supplicate six months before Ramadan for Allah to allow them to reach it. The fact that Allah has allowed us to observe Ramadan is a huge blessing so increase this dua till the last day before Ramadan: Allahuma Balighna Ramadan (Oh Allah allow us to reach Ramadan)3. Repent and make lots of Istighfar
What better way to enter Ramadan than to be in a state of repentance and purification of the soul. Sometimes our sins act as a barrier or holds us back from committing lots good deeds, so by asking Allah constantly for forgiveness and being cleansed from your sins, this will give us a good start for our spiritual journey in this blessed month.4. Forgive and cleanse the heart from ill feeling
It's important that we meet Ramadan with a clean heart. Having grudges or bitterness towards others will hold us back in our spiritual development and in our strive to reach the highest status with Allah.
One of the special features of Ramadan revolves around forgiveness; so how is it that we are asking and expecting Allah to forgive our sins and have mercy upon us when we can't even forgive our fellow human beings? Did not the Prophet (pbuh) say: “Show mercy, and you will be shown mercy; forgive, and Allah will forgive you.” Saheeh at-Targheeb (2426)
Forgiving others is not for them, but for you. It's a characteristic that only elevates the status of the forgiver as the Prophet (pbuh) said "No one forgives, but Allah increases him in honor" (Muslim 4689) So seek that status with Allah every chance you get.5. Make a schedule
Prepare a schedule for Ramadan Ramadan is the month where our daily routine is completely changed. Our sleep, meals and ibaadat are all fixed to accommodate the fasting and extra worship we have taken up in this blessed month. To ensure that no time is wasted or misused, it's best to make a schedule for all the acts of worship you're aiming to perform throughout the day. This will prevent you from slacking off or procrastinating good deeds.
6. Set your Intention
One of the most important pre-Ramadan preparations is to have a niyyah (intention) for this blessed month. Having an intention for anything is the best step to benefit from greater rewards. We should all enter Ramadan with the intention of fasting the whole month.
Some of the intentions to also have for Ramadan are as follows:
To fulfill an obligation from Allah
To fulfill one of the five pillars of Islam
To gain Taqwa (God-consciousness) as stated in Quran 2:183
To receive the mercy and forgiveness of Allah and purify our sins
To get closer to Allah and spiritually develop ourselves
To be saved from the Hell-fire
To adopt good habits and quit bad ones
To enter from the gate of Ar-Rayyan (gate in Paradise specifically for those who fast)
To witness and get the reward of Laylatul Qadr
To build a relationship with the Quran