Ways to Stay Productive in Ramadan Involving Nature.

What is Ramadan?

Ramadan is one of the holiest months for Muslims. Within this month, Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset for 29/30 days. The Islamic Calendar follows the moon in which the commencement of each month is identified by the birth of a new moon/ lunar cycle. There are two ways to “sight” the moon, actual moon sighting or going based off of calculations. There is major controversy on which one to use however, Islam is all about unity and puts emphasis on the fact that a person should follow the way of the community. Here in Champaign-Urbana, the local mosque, Central Illinois Mosque and Islamic Center (CIMIC) follows calculations in which all the Muslims on campus and in the area follow. 

Why is it Difficult for a Student to Stay Productive During Ramadan?

During Ramadan a person can only eat from sunset to sunrise meaning throughout the day we students do not have the energy or motivation to do our assignments. However, after we eat we all go pray and grind out all the work that we normally would have done during the day. This schedule is not ideal when it comes to exams and quizzes since those are generally taken during the day. Going outside and staying connected with nature is a main way to stay productive. Here are a list of things you can do in order to stay awake and be productive throughout the day even without food as a source of energy.

What are Activities that can be Done in Order to Stay Productive?

  1. Go for a walk.

My roommates and I always go on walks in the middle of our fasts in order to keep our blood flowing and in order to keep us moving. Since everything is online, staying in one place, staring at a screen makes it harder to stay awake and increase our level of drowsiness. 

2. Study in public.

One thing I have realized that works is that when I work or study in public I am more likely to get work done because I am not going to fall asleep in front of strangers. Also, seeing other people around you be productive causes you, yourself to be more productive. There are many places on campus to study outside such as the blue tables by the Union, the Undergraduate Library, and the Siebel Center.

3. Play Sports/Outdoor Activities.

My friends and I will always stop in the middle of studying and working and go play football on the quad. We take thirty minutes out of our day in which we stay active and have a moment of friendly competition where we bond together and then decide to go back to studying. 

4. Schedule out your Day.

Staying productive in Ramadan is one of the hardest things to do. In order to stay productive planning out your day and the times you want to do everything is a good way to keep yourself on track. Have a friend do the same thing because it makes it much easier. 

5. Open your Fasts Outside.

One way to connect with nature during Ramadan would be opening your fast outside with your friends. A few good places would be the Main Quad, South Quad, Japan House, or the blue tables by Grainger. This will not only wake you up in order to do study afterwards but it will allow you to get some fresh air.

Although, staying active and productive in Ramadan is hard, remember to replenish your intentions and your reasons for fasting.

Nature Practice: Week 2

Sam Iwinski

This week, my partner and I decided to finally clean up our backyard. To give some context, our backyard becomes very muddy and wet when it rains, snow melts, or if our dog digs (which is now a usual occurrence). We decided to cover some holes, lay down a tarp, and clean up our deck for more optimal seating. After we did this, we were able to feel more comfortable using our backyard and relax with some tiki torches and the trees’ sounds. My dog may still get extremely muddy when in the backyard, but now I feel like we have a calmer and more organized place to sit and relax. I always loved hanging out in my backyard as a kid, so it is very important to me to have this outdoor space to explore and grow.

Brendan Murney

Monday

To kick off the week, I had a busy schedule which stressed me out. I had to take care of volleyball administrative duties as well as schoolwork. Around 7 p.m. I went for a walk while listening to music. It has become sort of a routine for me to get outside and walk in order to destress and get back into a positive mindset.

Tuesday

To start off my morning, I showered and then had an exam to take in one of my classes. The exam went well and then I went for a bike ride around campus. I stopped near the South Quad and sat on a bench under the Bell Tower and enjoyed the sight of the purple flowers on either side of me.

Wednesday

I just got back home after sitting in the grass of the Main Quad for a couple hours while getting some homework done and watching lectures. I think I might have gotten a little sunburnt under my eyes which makes me happy. Although sunburn is not always fun, I feel happy about it because the weather is getting much nicer.

Adrianna Glisen

This week was very warm, so although I was suffering from a terrible cold, I went on a walk to the quad and spent some time sitting on the bench in front of the English building. Having graduated in December, I haven’t spent much time on the quad, and it was so nice to sit down and take in the scene and fresh air again.

Andrea Blood

This week we finally got some nicer weather which made going outside a much more pleasant experience. I took advantage of the weather by taking a walk around the quad and other parts of campus with some friends and ended the excursion off by grabbing some bubble tea. It felt nice to leave my bulky winter coat, hat, and gloves at home for once and I’m hoping that’s something I get to do a lot more as spring gets closer and closer. I didn’t realize exactly how much I missed being able to comfortably walk outside and it felt like I was able to take in nature in a way I really hadn’t since winter started. When the sun is out I can physically feel my mood lighten and I just had more motivation to get work done. Although the weather was by no means hot, it did kickstart my excitement for summer and all the outdoor activities that come with warmer weather (and not to mention a break from schoolwork).

Maya’s Humans in Nature Weekly Journal

Journal Entry: 02/15/21 – 02/21/21

This week’s weather was extremely cold. Consistent snowfall and ice covered the sidewalks and streets. I was also very preoccupied this week; may I say drowning in school work. After attending my lectures and completing other daily school requirements, I was especially stressed for my first big exam in my human development and recreation course. To apply a source of nature in my routine, and reduce stress when I found needed, I decided to take breaks and color! I thoroughly enjoy an adult coloring book while listening to some music. And so far, I have colored one of my favorite places: Honolulu Hawaii!

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The HIN Art and Nature Collection

Inside on a rainy day? Stressed out late at night or having a hectic evening with kids? Here are some quick suggestions for some nature inspired art activities to embed nature into your daily indoor routines !

Stay creative and inspired with HIN printable Sketch Art

As a reminder of HIN’s mission to #GetOutside and stay thinking about nature throughout our daily routines, check out HIN’s nature inspired art activity. Just download and print the sketches and color them in or further draw to create personal creations that are unique to you! – Don’t forget to tag us on Facebook or Instagram using the hashtags #HINProject #GetOutside #Humaninnature so we can see your fun creations and support for our HIN mission.

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