Day One

Tuesday, November 9th, 2021

Overall, day one was an alright start to this virtue tracking. For this blog, I will focus on my strongest and weakest virtues.

First off, on the positives, my strongest virtue of the day was temperance, giving myself an 8/10. I created an SAT preparation schedule for a testing date in December. Depending on how well I do on following this plan may affect its rating, but for now, I am optimistic. On the other hand, my weakest virtue was cleanliness, rating myself a 4/10, as I did my homework at a messy desk space that often led to distractions, so cleaning that area would be necessary to improve both cleanliness, but also industry. I will make it my goal for tomorrow to declutter my working desk in order to improve cleanliness.

For the additional virtues, industry was a 6/10, and tranquility was a 5/10. Lastly, my productive downtime was a 5/10 since I scrolled mindlessly on my phone for longer than needed, but was able to make an octopus from seed beads by following a tutorial during my downtime.

Day #1 – 11/8/21

Overall, I don’t think there is anyway in which this day could’ve been a failure, as it is the day I set out to improve. Furthermore, I received wonderful guidance from my therapist which allowed me to articulate my needs and problem solve in regards to achieving them. I was introduced to the chain method, as well as reminded of the tools I had already acquired regarding setting out towards happiness, that being behavioral activation and using writing as to gain an increase knowledge of my daily going-ons. So, today I started sleep-logging, as well as using my time to help my family through cleaning the garage and thereby spending time with them.

Sleep Log
9:01-9:05 – Restroom + Water
9:05 – Work Break
10:35 – Water/Restroom
10:40 – Lights Out, in Bed
10:50 – TV off

10:57-5:58 AM – Sleep, 7:01 hours, 84 Sleep Score, 0 Notable Wake-Ups

With all of this in mind, plus the generally successful nightly schedule, I’m happy to consider my first day a general success.

Alaina Brunell-Wright ~ My Journey to Moral Perfection

In this project, I have chosen five virtues to better achieve moral perfection. Despite having minimal knowledge on Franklin, aside from what I’ve learned within the means of school, this project is modeled after Benjamin Franklin. Franklin chose thirteen virtues, and strove to model his life to fit with these, to hopefully achieve some sort of moral perfection. Though I do not think that I will be able to become morally perfect, through this project, I hope to see improvements in these chosen virtues, in across facets of my life. 

The five virtues I have chosen for this experiment consist of Order, Contentment, Acceptance, Self-Discipline, and Purposefulness. These are all aspects and areas of my life that I think I could improve on, to better achieve moral perfection. I have some trouble keeping my space in Order-despite feeling better as a whole when it is put together. I hope to improve upon consistently keeping my space orderly. In terms of Contentment I hope to find time for things in which I enjoy, but sometimes neglect during the school year. In regards to Acceptance, I sometimes find myself hanging on things that perhaps are out of control, sometimes allowing them to put my whole day or even week out of whack. I hope to work on finding acceptance in things that are outside of my control. Self-Discipline, this is something I struggle with in regards to getting my school work done, outside of the school day, and being on my phone too much. I hope to become more disciplined in both of those areas, though I do believe that they are very much related. Finally, in terms of Purposefulness, I hope to become more intentional with my time and how I choose to spend it. When I have down time, instead of wasting all of it on my phone, I want to take that time to spend time with my little brothers and family.

Though I don’t think that I will be able to achieve complete moral perfection, through my time spent in this project, I hope to be diligent in working on my virtues. In the end of this, I hope to see improvement, in these facets of my life. I look forward to seeing how this goes, for both myself and others. I hope that even when this is over, the potential growth I’ve made stays with me, to help better improve who I am-in the long run.

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. 

Nicholas Karr – Day 1

Today, I did fairly well in a few of the virtues. Order is still a weak point, as I didn’t sequence my time well and still have a lot of work to do. I did make a couple todo lists. On the other hand, flexibility went well. I had to give an unexpected presentation and did it well. I thankfully didn’t encounter any serious scenarios involving tranquility, but I did use it during my lunch period. A few yellowjackets were chasing me. I previously would have been much more panicked about it, but I’ve gradually changed. I also did fairly well at industry. Robotics was the hardest place to maintain that because it required a lot of persistence to set up a slow computer. There is still a lot of industry to achieve before I go to bed in math homework.

The laptop in question. It’s a struggle to maintain my tranquility with something so slow.

Connor Lawson – Day 1 Update

For my first day, I did an adequate job. When I woke up, I put my alarm on snooze, and when my dad hollered for me to get up, I mumbled about how I would. I sat there for 30 seconds, contemplating whether to lay down for a few more minutes or get up immediately. As my brain cleared the fog of sleep away, I remembered about my virtues I chose, specifically sincerity, and that I must be sincere by staying true to my word and get up, so I did. For my self-control virtue, I did eat 3 Oreos that I packed in my lunch, and I snacked on a few chips. In terms of how much junk food I would usually eat, this is an exceptional start, and I hope to slowly improve on limiting the amount of junk food and candy I eat. I did not lie once for the entire day, which was a top-notch start to my honesty virtue. I kept as calm as I could, only grinding my teeth a little and staying silent when my dad started smacking his lips when eating, which is one of my pet peeves. This was about my tranquility virtue. I did not do much, if anything, with my diligence virtue as I did not have to study for any tests today because I don’t have any tests soon.

Connor Lawson – Blog Introduction

My motivation for this blog is to change my habits and become a better person. I wish to keep true to the virtues I have chosen. Benjamin Franklin was a man who kept true to many virtues. He created a process, in which I wish to replicate to some degree, to start and maintain virtues that he wanted to keep. 

Here are my virtues and strategies to commit to them: Honesty: Do not lie to others or yourself in any fashion. I will remind myself every time I might lie that it is always better to tell the truth, because the lie becomes evident eventually. Sincerity: Act accordingly to how you speak. I will always keep promises, to do this, I will set reminders on my phone for when I promise to do things. Tranquility: Do not get angry or upset at small or meaningless trifles. I will keep calm, tell myself that it’s not worth getting angry at, and take deep calming breaths. Diligence: Study for each test for at least an hour each day for 2 days before a test. I’ll Tell my parents to remind me to study, and tell them when I have tests. Self-Control/Nutrition- Minimize eating junk food and candy. I will limit the amount of candy/junk food in sight, this way I am not tempted to eat them.

I hope to gain and stick with at least one or two of these virtues even after the project. I believe that through committing to these virtues I will be able to better myself. I predict that I will be able to stick with most of the virtues, I believe I will make multiple mistakes, but for the most part I will stay true to the virtues.

Nicholas Karr – Introduction

Welcome to a blog where I will aim to achieve moral perfection and publish accounts of my progress. I created this blog because I want to become a better person. I have known of Ben Franklin for most of my life and had always kept a rough account of his inventions. This is my first time hearing about his virtues. They gain credibility due to Franklin’s credibility.

There are five different virtues that I hope to improve on. The most important is industry. Since it relies on rigid time management, it will be the most difficult. It also relates to another one of my choices: order. I plan to work on the effective ordering of time aspect of those two by practicing it by doing work early. I will also attempt to become more organized as part of order. The next virtue is flexibility. Changing can be difficult to me, but I can do things such as changing an aspect of my daily routine. Another useful virtue is resolution. I have a tendency to give up on projects halfway through them and never return. The best way to ameliorate this is to see a project through to its completion. Tranquility will be one of the most difficult things for me to focus on as it doesn’t come up that often and it leads me to think irrationally. It could be improved in the same way as flexibility.

As part of this blog, I hope to improve gradually in each of the virtues. I predict that I will be able to improve in at least 3 of the categories. Tranquility may never come up. I hope to put a focus on industry as it factors in to some of the other virtues. Thus, I begin the challenge and will write another passage tomorrow.