Introductory Essay

The purpose of this blog is to map out my progress on perfecting myself in five different virtues of life, through daily posts that track my progress on said virtues, as well as “grading” on how well I did on these five virtues, with a ranking scale of 1-10 (1 being the worst, 10 being perfect). It is important to note that three of these five virtues come from Ben Franklin’s view on what virtues are necessary for human perfection, and I am using his strategy of tracking my virtues and how I do on them throughout the week (albeit I’m focusing on more than one at a time, which Ben Franklin does not do in his tracking). Though I currently do not know much about the effectiveness of his prioritization of his virtues, hopefully, this blog will assist in my understanding of his virtues, in which I can make an opinion on their effectiveness and importance. I ultimately feel that the idea of being more productive with my time as my workload increases is a large motivator for working on these virtues, as many of them deal with some aspect of improving productivity within the time one has. 
As for the virtues I selected, three come from Ben Franklin’s Virtues, and the rest are from my own choosing. Benjamin Franklin defines the virtue of industry as the idea of always doing work with the time you have, and rid of those activities that only waste time. I believe that this one can connect to myself since during my work time I can be easily distracted by meaningless tasks, which causes me to take longer to reach my goal. Working on this could increase my time doing other productive activities, making a more fulfilling day. Another one of Franklin’s virtues is cleanliness, or the idea there should be no tolerance towards mess in the mind, body, and physical workspace. This would be a good virtue to work on as at my working desk space there are many distractions that keep me from the task at hand. Additionally, I struggle with keeping my body “clean” due to a lack of sleep from a bad sleeping habit, which only further decreases my productivity. Working on these would not only conserve time but make the time I have be more productive and efficient. The last of Franklin’s virtues that I have chosen is tranquility, which is defined as not being disturbed by minuscule or inevitable setbacks. This applies to me because often a small conflict, such as leaving the house later than normal, will spiral into me thinking that everything else is going to go wrong, in much more drastic ways. By controlling these anxieties and changing my mindset about them, I could improve my work ethic and mindset by not dwelling on the small trifles in life. For virtues outside of Benjamin Franklin, temperance is one that Aristotle prioritized and defined as taking life in moderation (though Benjamin Franklin also has moderation, he applies it only to food and drink, so using Aristotle’s definition would allow a broader area of improvement for myself). I believe moderation would be an important virtue for me to work on since I am prone to procrastination, and instead of taking assignments in small moderations, I will wait till the last minute and do all the work then, which results in a sloppier execution. Lastly, I believe that having productive downtime for myself, or the thought that when one is not actively working, they are using their time to do something mentally stimulating, yet still enjoyable. This would be an important virtue for me since I can get stuck in loops where I scroll mindlessly through my phone, never getting truly satisfied with myself and what I am engaging in. Instead, I could be more productive with my off-time such as reading a book or doing puzzle games, at least something that is more fulfilling and practical with my time. Overall, I believe that all of these virtues combined can definitely help me become a more perfect person, especially in the aspect of efficiency of work and time management. 
Ultimately, I hope by blogging my progress on mentioned virtues I can at least develop more healthier and beneficial habits. Though I do not think in the limited time I am doing this project I will make lots of progress, at least I predict that I will be more mindful in the future towards my faults when it comes to becoming a more efficient and content person. Optimistically, I can see myself improving on these virtues past the designated blogging stage, especially if I see improvements within said stage. Overall, I believe that the virtues I have selected for myself can really make a positive impact on my life if I am mindful of it and put in the effort to make these beneficial changes to my lifestyle. 

One thought on “Introductory Essay”

  1. This is really well written!! I love how you picked to work on industry and cleanliness, because those are virtues I need to practice as well. I definitely think it’s important to make time for yourself to relax and clear your mind :))
    -Kate Beaulieu

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