A Week in the Life of Benjamin Franklin

Taking on the Challenge

Last week I wrote about Benjamin’s Franklin’s habit of practising virtues. In the post, I explained how Benjamin Franklin maintained a list of thirteen virtues and practised one of them every week on repeat for most of his life. I questioned why more of us aren’t doing it too.

I have to admit after writing about it I still didn’t do anything to change my behaviour. I thoroughly failed to put my words into practice. So, this coming week (starting tomorrow) I’m going to try it out.

Instead of switching virtues once per week, I thought I’d start the habit in beta-mode and switch every day.

Here’s my Franklin-inspired list of ‘virtues’ I’ve just come up with:

  1. Abstention. Restrain yourself from consumption.
  2. Order. Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.
  3. Industry. Lose no time; cut off all unnecessary actions.
  4. Delight. Make every interaction with the aim of delighting the other.
  5. Grit. Embrace being uncomfortable or in pain, so that you may become more resilient.
  6. Tranquility. Don’t be disturbed by common or unavoidable accidents.
  7. Resolution. Perform without fail what you resolve.

I’ll be practising one of these virtues every day for the next seven days.

For complete transparency, at the end of each post I’ll write a little footnote about how it went that day.

To kick off tomorrow’s virtue (Abstention), I’ve decided to go 40 hours without eating. Wish me luck, and stay tuned!

Angus has just completed his third week of blogging!👏👏👏 Meanwhile, Fraser is partying in Mexico. This is post #22.