When I began my journey to moral perfection, I chose three of my own virtues and two of Franklin’s: Cleanliness, Acceptance, Productivity, Tranquility, and Kindness. I chose to prioritize Tranquility and Productivity as those were two I felt were particularly important for myself. I have a busy schedule, and it is often hard for me to find time to relax. I thought that by working on finding a good balance between the two I would decrease time spent on work and therefore have more time to myself. By working on Kindness, I spread more positivity to those around me, and by working on my other virtues I was happier, more organized, and relaxed.
I struggled the most with Productivity, but overall I did a decent job with it. I included Productivity in my list of virtues because I believe if I master it my daily life will improve dramatically. I usually waste a couple hours after coming home from tennis and school. I call this time my relaxation time, but in reality I’m just procrastinating on my work. I thought if I could be productive and knock out my homework right when I get home, I would have more time at night to do whatever I please without assignments lingering in the background of my mind. However, this proved to be difficult as when I get home from seven hours of school and three hours of tennis, I am exhausted. It’s incredibly difficult to start on homework right away and stay focused. I did have days where I accomplished this and it felt great to have that free time after, but I couldn’t maintain it. On a positive note, if I wasn’t able to completely omit the transition time I usually spend doing useless things, I was able to decrease it.
The virtue I did the best with was Tranquility. I found time in my day for meditation, walks, reading, stretching, listening to music, watching tv and many other beneficial activities. Not only did these specific activities benefit my Tranquility in that moment, I felt the positive influence of Tranquility in several aspects of my life. In tennis, school, and with my family I felt more relaxed and I found more enjoyment in life because I wasn’t so stressed and anxious. I expect to greatly benefit from my improvement so far and I hope to continue making progress. My other virtues Cleanliness and Acceptance went hand in hand with Tranquility as when I was organized and not expecting myself to be perfect, I felt more at ease.
Looking back on this experiment, I definitely see improvement in my mindset and my life. While I certainly did not achieve perfection, I bettered myself and as a result the people around me. Finding time to practice my virtues each day was sometimes a struggle, but the outcome made it well worth it. I hope to continue working on my virtues and maybe even adding some more to work on. With a little time, effort, and goal setting I am proud of how I made small, but important improvements in my life. I will remember the knowledge and strategies I gained from this experiment and continue to implement them in the future.