Yes, this book is great; The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People® as it has inspired millions of lives across the globe; includes me!
The title triggered me to search and read about Seven Habits of Highly Effective Muslims, I googled it but couldn't find any results although I found 7 habits of Bloggers, Christians, Catholics, Churches, Missionaries, Teachers and Believers which have been well thought and well written. This saddened me but at the same time initiated a thought process to come up with Seven Habits of Highly Effective Muslim. When I say effective that means a Muslim is having a positive and constructive EFFECT on himself/herself and also on the society; the society which comprises all kinds of humans regardless of any condition of religion, skin-color, nation and country.
When I compiled the list of 7 habits, I decided to split them in to two groups INTERNAL EFFECT and EXTERNAL EFFECT. I put Four Habits under INTERNAL EFFECT group and 3 Habits in EXTERNAL EFFECT category. By 'Internal Effect' I mean that these habits are impacting at the individual level and by 'External Effect' I mean that these habits if adapted by a Muslim will have a positive effect on society. However, the INTERNAL EFFECT Habits form the basis of EXTERNAL EFFECT hence all 7 habits are critically important.
1. Habit of COMPLIANCE: A Muslim, by all means, is supposed to comply with the mandatory requirements of Islam. This covers but not limited to Prayers, Zakat, Hajj, Fasting and belief in Allah & the Day of Judgment. A Highly Effective Muslim clearly understands that these pillars of Islam teach us several lessons which eventually have Effect on the Muslim himself and then on society both. For example, Hajj teaches the lesson of patience which is need of the hour considering the psychological conditions of the society. Zakat teaches the lesson to take care for others by financial means. Fasting teaches us to have control on desires. So all these mandatory things result in super-positive Effect on a muslim's personality.
2. HABIT OF SELF AUDIT: This habit makes a Muslim a Convicted (Mujrim) and the Judge at the same time. An Effective Muslim keeps auditing himself, specially at the end of each day. He asks himself several questions before he sleeps, for example, what Major sins I did today. Did I do lie, back-biting, harshness with parents, fraud, stealing, abuse, deceive, alcohol and/or illegal sex. In case the answer for any question is yes then he performs Touba. The process of Touba purifies a Muslim's thoughts and indirectly improves his personality by taking out all bad habits. To develop the habit of Audit, an Effective Muslim always remember his death and always remember that he is going to be answerable for his deeds which he is doing every second in this world since every single activity is being recorded by Almighty.
3. HABIT OF HONESTY: The Effective Muslim is always honest, honest at home, honesty at office, honest in every single deed he does. He is honest in earning, he is honest in paying tax, honest in treating people, honest in all kind of financial matters, honest in judging people and resolving conflicts. He loves people and use things; not vice versa. This quality cleanse his heart, mind and soul. The article written by Junaid Tahir (mjunaidtahir at gmail dot com)
4. HABIT OF DIFFERENTIATING HALAL-HARAM: An effective Muslim clearly understands the difference between Halal (allowed or lawful) and Haram (forbidden). He understands that Halal is not limited to eating only rather the concept of Halal-Haram is applicable to every aspect of life. He understands that if he earns money by illegal ways (financial frauds, by lying, by deceitful ways, by not giving his energies to his job as per the company's requirements) then his earning is not pure. He stays away from all Haram things.
5. HABIT OF GOOD MANNERS (Ikhlaqiat): An Effective Muslim is a live example of Great Manners. He speaks politey, he does not dishearten others by his tongue or deeds, he sets example by actually doing good things. He respects the elders and kind to youngsters. He is helpful, friendly and an easy going person. He stays away from gossips, back-biting and other social diseases. He understands fully that "The most hated person in the sight of Allah is the most quarrelsome person." Ref: Sahih Bukhari Volumn 003, Book 043, Hadith Number 637. He wins people's hearts by his kindness, gentleness, politeness, courtesy and helping nature. The article written by Junaid Tahir (mjunaidtahir at gmail dot com)
6. HABIT OF PROMOTING GOOD AND STOPPING BAD: An Effective Muslim knows the importance of Amr bil maroof and nahi a-nil munkar. This is what Allah has mentioned in Quran that Muslims are the best nation because they Promote/encourage for Good and discourage/stop the Bad. The Effective Muslim understands that he is supposed to help others in the manners of goodness and righteousness and he is supposed to discourage the evil matters. He does not take the law in hand but handles the bad situation by involving the right Law Enforcing Agencies or by dialogues. The article written by Junaid Tahir (mjunaidtahir at gmail dot com)
7. HABIT OF BRINGING PEACE: An Effective Muslim always endeavors for peace. He is patient in the situations of brawls and quarrels. He understands that two people can definitely have difference of opinion so he respects this fact and respects others too. He strives for resolving conflicts whenever observed. He believes that every single soul on earth has his/her rights so he respects the humanity regardless of skin color, country, nation, level of education.
So these are the 7 habits which every single Muslim must adapt in order to have a Positive and constructive EFFECT at individual and social level. How many habits are you practicing? Are you an effective Muslim? I appeal you to please go through these 7 Habits one more time and evaluate yourself and change your life style to become an Effective Muslim starting today. Always remember, everyone of us is answerable to Allah for every single deed we do so we have to change ourselves the way our religion demands. May Allah guide me towards the right path. Prayers requested.
Article Reference: 0008-mjunaidtahir-paradigmwisdom-30Jan12- The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Muslims