Benjamin Franklin is one name you can’t help but be familiar with. Whether you learned about him in school or you’ve heard it mentioned randomly, his name has been marked in history. In addition, he is most recognised as one of the founding fathers of the United States.
Benjamin Franklin was a thinker, inventor, scientist, publisher, writer, diplomat, advisory and soldier. He was also a founder of hospitals and libraries, designer of bills, a member of the assembly, and more. Now, that seems like a lot, doesn’t it?
However, if you take out time to read his autobiography, you would realise he is just as human as you are. The only difference is in the virtues and principles he led his life by. He was also renowned for his productivity, which some base on his daily schedules. Many who aim for productivity adopted his timeless schedule.
Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography is one read that will change your life for the best. He wasn’t born with a silver spoon but was born in a family of modest means. His parents scraped up enough cash to send him to school with the intention of him joining the clergy. However, he beat the odds and finished at age 10. Benjamin then began his career at the age of 12 when he started working as a print shop apprentice. You can imagine a young boy of 12 climbing around on printing presses, sorting letters and mixing ink. He basically did everything needed to keep a printing press running.
From then on, he became even more successful and accumulated enough wealth. Also, he dedicated his life to public service. He is one of the men in history who deserve to be called legends of their time. In his biography, Benjamin Franklin attributed most of his success to these 13 virtues below.
13 ways Benjamin Franklin’s virtues can change your life
These are the virtues that Benjamin Franklin lives by that helped shape him into the man we remember him as.
“Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.” Self-regulate what you put into your body; eat and drink for good living. Practice temperance.
“Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.” If you don’t have anything to add value to a conversation to, then say nothing. It’s better to listen rather than speak.
“Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.” As he quoted, let there be order in your life, from your time to your possession and every other aspect of your life.
“Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.” Carry through with whatever you decide to do. If you say yes, then do it. If you aren’t sure you can do something, then simply say ‘no’.
“Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself, i.e. waste nothing.” Don’t waste money no matter what.
“Lose no time. Be always employed in something useful. Cut off all unnecessary actions.” Spend your time doing only productive things. Don’t waste your time idling around when you can be productive instead.
“Use no hurtful deceit. Think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.” Honesty is the best policy so let it be yours. However, try not to be hurtful with your words, but find a nice way to express the truth.
You can download a generic duplicate of the virtue card HERE.
“Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.” Don’t bring harm to others for your own benefit, but find common ground.
“Avoid extremes; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.” Don’t take positions or behave in ways that bring harm to others.
“Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes or habitation.” This is next to godliness. Therefore, practice good hygiene.
“Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.” Try to manage your emotions and don’t let them rule you.
“Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.” Avoid letting your physical passions become a distraction or the main focus in your life.
“Imitate Jesus and Socrates.” These two figures in ancient history lived relatively perfect lives, so try to imitate their behaviour and actions.
Which of these virtues do you already practice daily?