The method of offering istikhaarah salaat is as follows: First two rakaats of nafl salaat should be offered. Thereafter, the following dua should be made with full concentration:
اللَّهُمَّ إنِّي أَسْتَخِيرُك بِعِلْمِك ، وَأَسْتَقْدِرُك بِقُدْرَتِك ، وَأَسْأَلُك مِنْ فَضْلِك الْعَظِيمِ ، فَإِنَّك تَقْدِرُ وَلَا أَقْدِرُ ، وَتَعْلَمُ وَلَا أَعْلَمُ وَأَنْتَ عَلَّامُ الْغُيُوبِ اللَّهُمَّ إنْ كُنْت تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الْأَمْرَ خَيْرٌ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي وَعَاجِلِهِ وَآجِلِهِ ، فَاقْدِرْهُ لِي وَيَسِّرْهُ لِي ثُمَّ بَارِكْ لِي فِيهِ ، وَإِنْ كُنْت تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الْأَمْرَ شَرٌّ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي وَعَاجِلِهِ وَآجِلِهِ فَاصْرِفْهُ عَنِّي وَاصْرِفْنِي عَنْهُ ، وَاقْدِرْ لِي الْخَيْرَ حَيْثُ كَانَ ثُمَّ ارْضِنِي بِهِ
When he reaches the underlined words, he should think of the thing for which he is making istikhaarah.
If he has not made up his mind after the first day, and some doubt still persists, he should do the same the following day. In this way, he could continue doing this for seven days. Insha Allah, he will come to know of the advantage or disadvantage of that matter.
If a person intends going for hajj, he should not make istikhaarah as to whether he should go or not. Instead, he should make istikhaarah to decide as to whether he should go on a particular day or not.
It is mustahab to recite alhamdulillah and darood (الصلاة على الرسول) before and after the above dua. A person who is not able to offer the two rakaat salaat may do the istikhaarah with only the above dua.
Translation of dua:
'"O Allah, I ask You to show me what is best, through Your knowledge, and I ask You to empower me, through Your power, and I beg You to grant me Your tremendous favor, for You have power, while I am without power, and You have knowledge, while I am without knowledge, and You are the One who knows all things invisible. O Allah, if You know that this undertaking is in the best interests of my religion, my life in this world, and my life in the Hereafter, and can yield successful results in both the short term and the long term, then make it possible for me and make it easy for me, and then bless me in it. Allah, if You know that this undertaking is NOT in the best interests of my religion, my life in this world, and my life in the Hereafter, and can NOT yield successful results in both the short term and the long term, then turn it away from me, and make it easy for me to do well, wherever I may happen to be, and make me content with Your verdict."