The Loch Stress Monster, Author: Issa Abbasi

For college students, this time of year is critical.  Exams are around the corner or have already begun and students are looking for means to cope with their stress.  Some sadly succumb to prescription drugs that they should not be taking, others to drinks caffeinated so much that they are dangerous and the rest have exercise or their own technique.  This entry is designed to help an individual cope with these trying times and to remind us of our purpose before, during and after one’s exams.  Of course, you’ll also find out how to beat the Loch Stress Monster as well.

Before you crack open your books in the coming days to start studying for your exams, I want you to remember our purpose in this life, the purpose that Allah s.w.t. mentions in the Glorious Qur’an:

” I created the jinn and humankind only that they might worship Me. ” [Surah adh-Dhariyyat, verse 56)

If we remember this constantly in our lives, trust and believe that there will be much blessings and bounty in our affairs.  If you begin any action on good intention, you will be richly rewarded for it, if not now, then inshaAllah in the afterlife.  Even while you’re studying, take time to remember that you want to do well to show that Muslims can achieve anything in this world.  Be the best Organic Chemistry student you can be for the right purpose; to please your Lord.  While you’re studying, re-check this intention and after you exam, finalize your intention so that it may be kept pure.

Keep the following du’a in mind while you’re studying.  It is very important to note however, that just because you read these du’a (supplications) does not guarantee your success.  You must still study hard and put in the effort and rely on Allah s.w.t. at all times, especially on the result.  Nothing, and I mean nothing, can happen without the will of Allah s.w.t.  That is after all what being the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe implies.

Dua’s for studying:

Finally, I would like to share some personal tips for exam time I tried in my undergraduate and graduate years are below:

1) Create a list of your exams and what dates you will have to write them.  With the completion of each exam, cross off the exam you just finished.  Human nature desires completion, so the more you see that your load is decreasing, the more drive you will have to keep your studying pace going.

2) Prioritize your exams (see last week’s post “Procrastination Nation” for more on this tip).  Also, don’t even think about cheating.  It is un-Islamic and violates Academic Integrity.  One of my high school teachers always reminded our class before an exam that “cheaters never win, and winners, never cheat,” so, don’t be a loser.

3) Channel your stress into alternative means like exercise, leisure reading, etc. on a break.  Don’t rely on stimulants such as caffeine or prescription drugs to help you out.  Your exam will come and go, but your health is with you for a long, long, time.

4) Remember the Hadith (I will try to get the official citation as soon as I can) that if life were placed on a scale, it would be worth less than the wing of an insect.  Again, study and do your best, but don’t stress, worry, or agonize about the result.

5) Study in bursts.  One of the scholars I study Islam under believes in 40 minute lectures with a ten minute break because a human’s attention span is so finite.  Do your best to keep your study sessions short, then take a short break and come back to studying.

May Allah s.w.t. grant all students knowledge to benefit them and help to ensure their success on their exams!

P.S. Jazaka Allahu khairan to Ammar Idelbi for coming up with the title for this post!  His blog can be found at

P.P.S. Feedback is encouraged! Leave a comment or feel free to email us with suggestions for future posts!


~ by Yousaf on December 11, 2009.

One Response to “The Loch Stress Monster, Author: Issa Abbasi”

  1. Jazak Allah for sharing. I was actually going to do a similar post for my blog and indeed, it’s time to crack open the “Studying” dua book. Thanks for the reminder and posting! Smile and stay blessed
    Until next week,
    your sis in faith!

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