As a Muslim convert smoker, fornicator etc many years ago, I find it difficult if not impossible to fast and stop these evil actions. I haven’t been successful to fast a single day in my life. I need advice please.
In response to this question, Lets note that One of the purposes of the practice of fasting in Islam is to help us overcome our destructive habits and create positive and life-enhancing habits and thus prepare us to face the challenges of life.
Therefore, if you were to fast and turn to ALLAH for help, you can beat your smoking and other bad habits. Many people have overcome such unhealthy habits through fasting; so many of them have quit smoking, fornication etc expecially during the month of Ramadhan after having addicted to it for ten to twenty years or even more; they have never turned back. Even without Ramadhan, we have weekly fastings of Monday’s and Thursdays and and 13th, 14th and 15th of each Islamic month as our weapon against Satan.
You can also do the same, but before doing that you must gather enough courage and inner strength by talking to yourself about the negative aspects of smoking and other haraam lifestyle. No one can stop an unhealthy habit if he still continues to glamorize it deep in his heart. It seems you have been conditioned to associate smoking and other things with pleasure. Therefore, you ought to talk yourself out of it by visualizing all of the negative things associated with it, and picturing the pain and suffering (cancer, etc.) that it may entail. Also, you should think of the valuable resources you are squandering away through smoking, which could be used to feed many who are deprived of even the most basic necessities of life.
After convincing yourself and creating enough self-motivation, you should turn to ALLAH through dhikr (remembrance of ALLAH). Thus, every time you are prompted to lit a cigarette, to admire a passing sister or respond to a call of your girl/boyfriend, cancel that by repeating Subhaana ALLAAH (Glory be to ALLAH), al-hamdul lillaah (Praise be to ALLAH), ALLAAHU AKBAR (ALLAH is most Great), anytime you feel like fornicating, cheating, etc just do the above. You also need to beg ALLAH to give you enough power to overcome this MONSTER. ALLAH is certainly with those who strive for excellence in virtuous deeds. So, visualize that what you are praying for is already given to you. If you are sincere, you will be rewarded in your efforts. Islam is hard, and yet it is easy for those whom ALLAH has made it easy. You can expect ALLAH to help you, if only you turn sincerely to HIM and surrender yourself to HIM.
This is not only to the questioner but to all those in any bad habit.
May ALLAH keep guiding us through our efforts to be good Muslims and protect us from our bad habits.