Hakim al-Umma Mawlana Shah Ashraf Ali Thanawi (Allah have mercy on him) instructed a seeker,
‘A little determination is required to stay away from all that is sinful. In addition, sit and recite daily with contemplation hundred times ‘Allah’ ‘Allah’. Do this in spite of not having the desire to do so.
I have a strict criteria (in instructing those aspiring spiritual progress) to stay away from all that is sinful.
Holding one’s self from indulgence in sinful is the most undesired (yet most beneficial) of all the spiritual struggles and exercises for the lower self (nafs).’
Tarbiyet us Salik, volume 3, page 1026