Luke Kounkel – Reflection

  • Introduction: I chose my virtues by looking at what I struggle wiht and choosing virtues that were complementary to those problems. I don’t tend to suffer many problems outside of a few large core ones, so choosing virtues wasn’t difficult. This assignment shows my character through a peek into my daily life for 2 weeks and all of the actions I took. Unlike Franklin I really don’t have any lofty goals, and am really just looking to live my life.
  • Challenge: The virtue I struggled with most was the one I most needed improvement with, Industry. Focusing and getting through large swathes of work has always been a challenge for me, and improving here would have been very helpful to my productivity for the rest of my life. I improved slightly through implementation of a to-do list on my phone that always let me know what needed to be done, but my total industry remained mostly unchanged. In the future I might seek medication or treatment for ADHD, but right now I seem to be coping fine.
  • Success: One virtue I made improvement on was disconnection. I ended up spending an hour or so less on my phone each day doing other activities, and even though industry as a whole was a failure, disconnection will give me more time to get things done in the future.
  • Summary: Becuase of my successes in disconnection, I have more time to do work or to relax mindfully as opposed to mindless scrolling. This attempt to improve also showed me some methods that don’t work, so if I try this again on my own I’ll know what not to try.

conclusion

I’m going to be completely honest. I wish I could have taken this project more seriously and had been in a place to focus on it more. I just feel like too much has changed in my life and how I felt about myself between starting and finishing this project. Maybe that’s the point? Maybe my goal shouldn’t have been to have a beginning and an end to this project because is that not what life is, constant change and happenings?

Cleanliness: I feel like I did good things in cleanliness, it’s something that I have progressively been taking more seriously in my life. It’s something that people attach so much mortality to these days and I don’t know how I feel about that. I think of the ideals on cleanliness as being very similar to the ideals on food and how we feel about how food affects people’s bodies. There is no orality in food, food is not good nor bad it is fuel. There is better food but there is always better food and worse food. Similar to cleanliness, and every one has a different definition of what clean is. Life is weird i guess and maybe its up to what a person can do and what a prson feel like is worth doing.

resolution : i’ve gotten better at this, doing what i say i’m going to do and keeping my word. Something that I would like to continue to work on and think about and put focus into. i think that i’ve just gotten alot better at this overtime as it has been something that i’ve struggled with for a long time

Order: i’ve been trying to compartmentalize different parts of my life and actually doing what i need to do on a day to day basis in an orderly fashion. i will continue to achieve a sense of order and happiness

tranquility: i’ve gotten a lot better at this one, not letting things that shouldn’t be affecting me affect me. I am doing ok and i am happy and at peace with myself and with life in geral. If tried to be more stable and not get thrown off as easily as i have at other times in my life.over all i have seen a lot of success in this category

boundaries with others: ive gotten better at saying no and telling people when i don’t particularly need their opinion. I’ve been trying to pick apart why other people exist and make me feel the way that i do and maybe that is my next step. For example resentment often means that is lacking a boundary, or envy is just a show of my own lacking and low self esteem. I’ve been trying to take things less personally as well and just make my interactions healthier.

There is not much more to say, I will continue to work on my virtues and actively try to make myself a happier and healthier person while also being at peace with who I am now. I feel good about this 🙂

Day 10

Last day of complete and total blogging and honestly i think im seeing change in how i feel about myself and how others are interacting with me. I feel like im natually a more authentic version of myself and i feel more secure in my being.

Cleanliness: i didnt do as great with this as i would have liked to. I didnt pick up my room beofre i went to bed because i was very tired but honeslty sllep is important and i think an importantn aspect is knowing when you can sacrifice a vurtue for your own well being so maybe these days are imporant too 🙂 i give C+

order: i didnt have it in me to make my lunch for tomorrow. i worked closing and i think a lesson that i have learned form this is that i need to be extra careful as to make sure tht i dont need to do anythign when ever i get home form work on nights that i close so that i actually get it done. A part of my order may be incorperating that into my week as well. I give C+

Tranquility: I watched a video in hisotry class about world war two and what the deadly aspects of it were. This really scared me and kinda made me anxious and then i got anxious about wether or not i would be able to durvive something like fihting in world war two because im not complety sure i could and that kinda scares me. I dont want to die. I was shaking when i got home becuase of it and had to sit and mediatie for a little bit. I was able to take my anxiesty med and Itselad of letting myself spiral deeping into that mental hole i pulled myslef out of it in tme for work which is really good. I give B

resolution: i overall stuck to my commitments for the day and was a good day for resoution i give B

Reflection

(Just a reminder that my reflection and comments are late due to my absences) As a reminder, my five virtues were cleanliness, order, physical health, balance, and acceptance.  My end goal was to lead a more productive lifestyle and create a healthier mindset.  I tended to prioritize virtues that I could easily incorporate into that specific day, so sometimes it was focused on order and other days it was physical health. I was also out of town for a majority of this project so it was interesting to compare how I embodied my virtues in and out of school. 

The virtue I struggled the most with was cleanliness.  My goal with cleanliness was to solely keep my surroundings clean. To begin, I shared a hotel room with three other girls. As many people can assume, it was a struggle to keep our room clean. Although on our second to last day we allotted ourselves 10 minutes to clean it.  This act completely changed our entire environment – both physically and mentally.  Once I arrived home, my suitcase took over my room; clothes were everywhere. Similar to my cluttered and crazy room, my mental state was all over the place.  At this point I was finally able to grasp the real reasoning for picking cleanliness as a virtue: people’s surroundings coexist with their mental happiness.  

Although I improved on most of my virtues, the virtue I improved the most on was balance. Through this process I have learned that my body and mind needs breaks from the craziness of our society. When I was in Philadelphia, I did not open my computer to do any schoolwork on the trip. While this was partially forced because we did not have access to wifi, I was able to connect with my peers and live in the moment. Recently I have found myself worrying about schoolwork so much I have been unable to enjoy what’s happening at that moment. 

In the end, my outcome from my virtues was similar to what I expected it to be.  I was not extremely successful, but I learned key values I need to implement into my everyday life.  Furthermore, if I tried this again in the future I would focus on one virtue at a time just as Benjamin Franklin did.  I think it would be easier to conquer a virtue if I put all my attention into it.  I think it is also important to understand that achieving “moral perfection” is unrealistic, all that is needed to try to continually be a better person. 

Day 10 Nov 18

moderation- A

frugality- A

accountability- A

self-discipline- A

cleanliness- B

This was the last day of the challenge and it was much better than yesterday. Today I finally got back to the gym, I didn’t spend any money and I spent time with my family. I think today was a blueprint for how I want every day to go and I hope that I continue that now that the challenge is over. I wouldn’t say that I was successful in this challenge because I know I could have done way better. I can still work and practice my virtues after the challenge to live a happier and healthier life.

Conclusion

Writing these entries and sticking to my virtues was a challenge. I had to constantly remind myself why I was doing this and what was my purpose. My virtues were difficult ones as well as i chose to work on tranquility, silence, order, dedication, engagement. These were the aspects in my life I thought I could improve on. People have told me I need to be more quiet or more engaged so these words inspired me.

The virtue I struggled with most was dedication. As of late i wasn’t putting all my effort into school and was messing around a lot. I wanted to change this and become more focused and dedicated. Before I left for school I would always tell my self, be dedicated today. Waking up and saying this set a tone for the day and I feel really helped me. In soccer practice instead of doing the bare minimum I would do the extra mile so I could improve. I really started to see results as the days went on. It was super hard though. There were days when I just felt unmotivated and didn’t want to do anything.

My most successful virtue was tranquility. I felt like this was going to be the hardest for me but in the end did well. During school i was relax and not messing around a ton. This got me in less trouble and made me feel like a more respectable person. At my soccer instead of freaking out when my teammate messed up I was calm and said it was ok.

These virtues were not easy to keep up with. It was a constant battle to remember them. I would feel guilty if I didn’t follow through with my virtues because I said I would complete them. In the end I definitely became more calm and dedicated to even the little things in life. I will carry over these virtues into the rest of my life and maybe even get new virtues I can improve on.

Reflection: November 19th

To summarize my introductory essay, I chose Benjamin Franklin’s virtues of Industry, Cleanliness, and Tranquility, as well as two of my own: temperance/moderation and productive downtime. Personally, I prioritized the balance between Industry and Tranquility, since as my workload increases I am looking to stay on top of it, without growing restless and burnt out. By having this balance, I feel like it would allow myself to accomplish more, while enjoying myself during the process, which can drive me to do tasks that would possibly fullfill both my industrious side, while making myself feel tranquil. Essentially, by balancing the energy that I had hoped to make more out of my days. Now, though I had set out to achieve all of these virtues, there were some that I had done well at while others were put on the backburner so to speak.

Throughout the process of blogging my virtues, it became clear to me that cleanliness and productive downtime were going to be my struggle suits. First off for cleanliness, I had already developed a habit of having a cluttered workspace that part of myself got used to it and the dirtiness either did not effect me or simply caused myself to avoid it alltogether by moving to another area. At times I had succcesses with cleanliness, but my motivation for it simply was not there, and I often opted for the easy solution since the time I had for it was limited. For the future, I would like to make my goal for cleanliness more specific, by possibly dedicating 10 minutes per day just to declutter. Hopefully by having something more concrete I would be able to see improvements in the area. Moving on to my productive downtime virtue, I also heavily struggled with this subject. Though I had the NYT mini crossword to get me through, it just does not take enough time for all the downtime I had. And with the downtime I had, I just wanted to recharge before my next industrious task and simply give my brain a break. Additionally, my idea for productive downtime would be doing something in the arts, and part of me was not motivated to start on a whole new art endevour in small intervals at a time. Overall, I feel like my productive downtime could be a lot more successful by planning something out that I would do in my downtime that I could revisit at ease at anytime, such as a paint by numbers painting or a puzzle. Overall, though I struggled with these virtues, I still have motivation and innovations to try to fix both my mindset and the way I approach these virtues.

As for my successes in this experience, I believe that my temperance/moderation virtue was the strongest. Even if I did not get through as much school work as physically possible, I still took it in chunks rather than procrastinating on it, which is a huge improvement for myself. Additionally, I had created a set plan for my moderation virtue by also creating a plan for SAT prepartions for a test in December. By taking SAT information in small chunks rather than cramming the final week, I feel that I will be more successful and less stressed come test day. For the future, if I keep a schedule with what I plan on doing, I feel that I would be able to balance my industry and tranquility virtues a lot better since I would have my work done at earlier periods, allowing for more tranquil downtime as well as less stress when it comes to procrastination. I am very proud of being able to improve upon moderation in my life since procrastination is a bad habit that I feel like this virtue can start to fix. Ultimately, my successes in temperance I feel could lead into other areas of life, pushing myself even closer to perfection.

Overall, I feel like this blogging experience allowed myself to be mindful of what I want to improve for myself, which caused the goal of “perfection” to be more obtainable. In improving these virtues, especially temperance/moderation, I was able to have a lifestyle that more accurately reflects what I want for my future. Specifically, with temperance, I was able to increase both my industry and productivity by simply being organized and rationing my work out over a long period of time, which made my work process plenty more enjoyable and effecient. However, there definetly is room for improvements too, which could further guide me to match my goals for my future. If I were to redo this experience, I would give myself specific activities that I could do that would measure my success with the virtues, but would most certainly continue the self reflection. Ultimately, the purpose of this project for myself was to shape my current self to better match what I want my future self to be. Even if perfection is impossible, it should not stop myself from trying to improve myself where I can.

Nicholas Karr – Reflection

Over the course of my virtues project, Order was the most difficult for me to engage in. It cascades over time as the schedule from one day affects the schedule of the next. The key to improving on order is to continue consciously practicing. I picked this near the top because I knew I always had trouble with it. It shapes the way the other virtues behave. For example, it controls what order various industrious projects happen in. Even though it was the most important, it wasn’t the only virtue.

I embarked on this project to improve on five different virtues in total. They were prioritized based on which I thought would make me feel the best and be the most productive. They were also ranked on their general importance to my life. I would like to do a lot of good in my life, and all of my most important virtues reflect that. To me, resolution is the one that best represents the long term challenges required to achieve a good life.

Some of my other virtues were more successful than order. I managed to be more industrious than usual. It left me feeling more productive, though it wasn’t always in the order I would have liked. I also put a lot of work towards resolution through some long-term projects. That is where a lot of my industry went to.

I also faced troubles with tranquility. It was much worse than usual because I was sick for about half of the total time spent on the project. I won’t have a hard time returning to my previous levels, and may even improve over Thanksgiving break. Flexibility is even difficult to grade because I don’t feel as if I had any opportunities to truly use it.

Overall, the project offered a great chance to reflect on my actions through analysis and consciously focus on improving them. Thinking about working on individual virtues helped me to safely traverse my weeks in a successful manner. Though I may be an incorrigible person when it comes to order, I still believe I can and will have to improve.

Click to see my comments.

Reflection 11/19/21

The central theme behind all of my virtues was productivity, whether this be in terms of creativity, school work, cleanliness, or my own physical and mental wellbeing. I believe that living and thinking in a passive manner is harmful, if one really wants to make an impact one has to actually take actions with the intention of actually going through with them. Don’t just worry about and lament your problems, try to solve them. I quickly discovered that, in order to make measurable progress, I needed to focus on specific virtues rather than broadly resolving to improve at all five. Every day I would take two of the five and genuinely attempt measurable progress. The results varied (as I will expand on later) but I believe that having virtues and being mindful of my own behavior was beneficial in itself. 

My greatest challenge in this whole endeavor was not a specific virtue but a common problem that spanned several. I faced an epic struggle with the virtue of Resolution. Resolution was not on my list of five virtues, but it was the phantom thread that strung them together, the elephant in the room on every blog entry. I had plenty of ideas on how to improve myself and put my virtues into action, but oftentimes, I simply lacked the resolution to put these ideas in motion. For instance, I frequently decided to try meditation to increase Tranquility and several times was forced to report failure to actually meditate. Similarly, I never got around to fully cleaning my room which was my main goal with Cleanliness. I consistently committed other, smaller failures on my various virtues and eventually, every success I did experience became, in my mind, a victory of Resolution.

The virtue of Industry was as close as any of my virtues came to literally meaning Resolution, so perhaps it’s a good thing that it was in Industry I experienced the greatest success. Since the beginning of this school year, I have struggled with getting homework done in a timely manner. I find myself easily distracted and unable to find a productive rhythm.  However, with the virtue of Industry in mind, I have been able to break out of this habit a little and become more productive with homework. Having the goal of Industry to consider has allowed me to become more aware of my actions while working on homework and remind myself to focus when I notice that I’m falling off course. On the whole, I’d say that I’ve gotten back on track for the year and have genuinely improved in Industry. 

In addition to teaching me to be conscious of my own Industry, this experiment has encouraged me to pay greater attention to the ways I spend my time and if these things are consistent with the goals I would like to achieve. Am I creating a life I enjoy living or mentally sitting backseat as I go through the motions? As I said earlier, I don’t ever want to be passive, especially in my own life. This experiment has helped me take greater initiative in my life and, while it wasn’t entirely successful, has taught me to pay greater attention to the world around me and the effect I’m having on it.

Reflection

At the beginning of this journey towards moral perfection, I chose five virtues that I wished to strive for: Tranquility, Moderation, Order, Patience, and Joy. These virtues were chosen with special care in order to allow myself some grace and peace within my life. Tranquillity, Patience, and Joy were specially to help me with this practice. Moderation and Order were to enhance my life through organization and scheduling events and time so that I could figure out where I was the most productive and fulfilled. While all of these I have deemed important, Joy is truly the one I hoped would improve. I found that along the way, working on all of my virtues led me to find joy more easily. So, while all of them are each valuable in their own way, Joy was the one that I thought would enhance my life the most. I feel as if I have contributed more of myself to my family and friends while doing this project. I have been overall a more positive person and I think that it shows in my daily interactions. I hope that while this process is now over, I will continue to improve and keep my optimistic personality alive so that I spread more joy to myself and others around me. 

I struggled with Order the most. I selected this virtue because I am not the most organized person when it comes to spaces and items. It is important to me to improve this because when I go into my bedroom, it often reminds me of stress and chaos with the state it is in. I truly believe that when my room is cleaner, I am calmer and am able to relax in it more. I have a hard time starting to clean when I have put it off for so long. Because it is not the most thrilling task, I often don’t make time to do it. To overcome this feeling, I want to continuously put away any items that I use right after I am done using them so that they don’t pile up into a big heap of stress. I am going to continue to work on this virtue because I believe that it will make me feel consistently better if I keep my room organized and clean. 

Throughout this process, I have been mostly successful on all of my virtues, minus Order, but the one that stands out the most is Joy. The benefits of this virtue are pretty simple and easily comprehensible. When I feel the happiest, I am truly myself and my life seems so much more vibrant. It’s almost like seeing color for the first time. Of course I have been joyful in prior years, but at this point in my life, I have found myself and found who I want to surround myself with. Through this journey, I have taken note of all of the things that have brought me the most joy every day, to try and find the patterns and continue to do more of what makes me feel fulfilled. I have found two things: I don’t always find joy from expected places and when I am with my friends and family, it’s hard to feel anything but warmth and bliss. All in all, this has really helped and changed the way I look at ordinary things and events and has made me much happier. 

Continuing to work on these virtues will help make my life better in many ways. For one, it will relieve a lot of stress and make me a much calmer person. It will also help me take a step back and enjoy what is right in front of me before looking ahead too far into the future. I hope to come back to these methods as often as I am able because these past two weeks have been significantly better as compared to previous ones. In response to Benjamin Franklin’s “Speckled Ax” essay, I understand and agree with the fact that sometimes perfection doesn’t have to be reached. And often–actually in all cases–it never is. However, I also don’t believe in settling for anything less than who you want to be. Our flaws make us special and unique, and marks and scratches on our surfaces are inevitable, but trying to smooth the edges makes the blade of our lives even brighter. While my ax still has rust on it, I accept it and will continue to enhance my virtues so that I can make my life even more shiny. If I continue to focus on the virtues of Tranquility, Moderation, Order, Patience, and Joy, I hope to gain a much more gratifying life.

Reflection

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.

Reflection on Moral Betterment

In the entirety of this project, this blog in which I attempt to achieve moral betterment on the behalf of myself, I find it ever so apparent that I have an innate struggle with Enjoyment and Sincerity. Both of these are incredibly important to me, and I believe that a mastery of such traits will allow me to be closer to my ideal image; if I were to achieve them I would become an elated and productive individual. As such ideals are the most abstract, I understood when undertaking them that they would inherently take more time: perhaps the achievement of such utterly will be a lifelong struggle in which perceived success will never be reached.

Despite this, I will endure regardless in such a struggle, and I will recount what has vexed me so. When considering the Sincerity of oneself at any point in time, one truly needs to be actively Aware of their actions, their words, and how they are perceived by oneself and others. Generally, I consider myself quite successful at the onset of such, but putting such Sincerity into execution has been a miserable failing on my part. I realize now that I feel the pressure of peers too intimately: I try to leave the people I enjoy burden-less, and with the individual I believe will bring them the most contentment. It’s a depressing exercise, one in which is constantly a drain upon my mental energy, but also an incredibly difficult pattern of behaviors to break. I have to be actively aware of what I wish to do before a conversation, lest I fall into old patterns which leave me frustrated and ashamed.

In further regards to Sincerity, I will also acknowledge that such an endeavor is one that couldn’t be reasonably accounted for within the span of eleven days. It will soon be a long-term effort of mine, one which will need to take effortful steps as to make true progress in it. As of now, I have learned within this time that I need to start off small; labor towards Sincerity with the individuals considered to be closest, and once that has been achieved slowly expand outwards until mastery is reached. I have made some progress in such a front, but further progress upon it is a goal of mine. However, I am glad to have had the opportunity to focus on it, as such focus has allowed me to recognize the importance of working further upon it, and how being Sincere leads to my greater happiness.

On a further account of my trials, I recognize that the magnitude of Enjoyment, both in how it challenges me and how broad such an idea is, is one that I could not fully account for within the time-frame allotted. At this time, I believe myself to be in a depressive episode, one I predicted months prior. However, such prediction has led me into an impending doom of malaise, one in which I have been trying to actively combat since the start of this project. Overall, progress has been slow, but I would expect no less with the circumstances I have acquired. It is a struggle to find joy in a life where previously Enjoyed activities no longer lend me fruits of euphoria. It is furthermore a struggle to find joy in repeating tiring behaviors as to gain a sense of normalcy.

However, despite the enduring struggle, I will continue onwards with my current schedule, as doing anything is better than the cynical ruminations which come with everlasting time. Any Enjoyment I can encounter will be reaped, and from there I will make slow, minimal changes until I see an everlasting impact. To hasten this impact, I will discuss alternative options with individuals understanding of my current position alongside my desires. One of such options is to continue working on my self-actualization, as accountability for myself will lead to healthier habits, and from there a potentially better state of mind. Most importantly, I will try to find the innate sources of my emotional malaise, and from there adjust accordingly so I can create a present which I can Enjoy.

The creation of a brighter present moment would not be possible without the virtues that have been the most successful in execution, as an ability to master concrete ideas will lend itself to being applied to more abstract and difficult pursuits. In the concept of Awareness, I have found myself with an acute radar for compulsive concepts, and from that I can simmer on unsavory ideals until they trickle away, rather than directly engaging. Furthermore, efforts in regards to engagement have been successful, whether that be through participating in a side activity or by simply redirecting current mental energy. Resolution has generally been ample in supply, and although further work needs to be completed, the groundwork has now been lain for future habits; a continuance of effortful planning and work will soon turn circumstances more into my favor. Such can be proven in the actions that have occurred throughout the duration of the project, as boundaries for my sanity have been set and stable, and productivity has kept its general trend, though work can be done even further. The one in which I believe true mastery has been achieved, at least to an identifiable extent, is the mastery of Regulation, and how thankful am I for such. Stable recording upon my endeavors for a proper time of restfulness has led to an increased Awareness of issues in my nightly schedule, as well as which habits are conducive for my wellbeing. Overall, if a pattern of Regulation continues after the conclusion of this series, I can easily identify myself maintaining a healthy state of being for months to come. The tides of schedules are quick to change, but the longer they occur for the more resilient they become to the tribulations of life.

Reflection

I struggled most with the virtue of Tranquility. I chose this virtue because I tend to worry about things I can’t control or put myself in situations that induce stress. My high stress levels tend to negatively effect my moods, sleep schedule, eating habits, and school work so it was very important for me to try and improve this aspect of my life with the tranquility virtue. I currently have many different ways I chose to relieve my stress like work out classes, using a planner, and sticking to a schedule, but it was hard for me to stick with these things. I often myself having busy days and forgetting about things I needed to get done which I should’ve written down to do but I forgot. Whenever this would happen I would have to stay up late to get it all done so I can fall asleep without thinking about it. I definitely had some good aspects and accomplishments with this virtue, but overall I think it was the one I struggled the most with. 

I felt that I was most successful with the progress I made towards the virtue of Order. I was tested in this area especially over the past week involving my travel and many deadlines to meet for school. Using a planner and to-do lists is one way I keep myself in check and stay organized enough to complete my daily tasks. Over the course of the experiment I was able to keep up with most of my tasks when it came to deadlines. For example, I was able to be at all of my destinations while traveling on time and I was able to make time to complete assignments that were due while I was there. I did run into problems like not having wifi at the hotel, but I was able to problem solve and did the work other ways then communicated to my teachers the situation. There were definitely moments where I probably waited too long to do something or didn’t prioritize well, but in the end I still completed everything I needed to.

Although I do believe that I was able to improve certain aspects of my life with this experiment, I think it would probably be more beneficial the longer I stick with it. Whether each virtue was successfully met or not, I was able to start myself on the right path to improving on each topic. This experiment has ultimately benefited me and given me skills to practice managing my stress, organizing my time, and making smart decisions to make sure I don’t feel behind or overwhelmed with my current situations. Things I have learned to let go of are making everyones problems mine to fix and having the mindset that just because something isn’t happening in five minutes doesn’t mean I have to wait to prepare for it. Although I never was able to focus on all five of my chosen virtues in a s single day, I believe that the practice of the individual morals provided me with a new pathway to improving myself and my lifestyle. 

11/18/21 blog

Last day of blogs! Today I finally felt some Resolution to the recent issues I’ve been experiencing. I’ve been trying to ask questions and get answers to help me find Resolution which in return will provide me with a stronger sense of Tranquility. I am babysitting right now for a new family which I really like. I’m hoping this can be a new regular family for me, which can provide for more of an Order to my schedule. The more things I have booked in my schedule the more Orderly it will be. When I have an organized schedule, I tend to feel less stressed as well.

11/17/21

Today was an okay day when it comes to virtues. I was able to go to a workout class which definitely cleared my mind and be more productive for the rest of the day. I think that this contributed to progress on Resolution because I found a healthy way to get back on track and do what I need to do. When I got home I worked on some homework, but didn’t do all of it because it seemed overwhelming, leading to me being stressed about it for tomorrow. I didn’t do great on Tranquility progress today, but I feel like I have been fairly strong about it in my previous days so I’m not mad at myself. This shows progress on my work towards sincerity, and realizing that I don’t have to be perfect. 

11/15-16/21

(combined days due to absence)

The past two days have been kind of rough for me and I haven’t really been able to focus on my Virtues very often. Someone I know got themselves into a bad situation and all I want to do is help, but there’s nothing I can really do. I’ve been very stressed and worried which have made me realize I might need to pay more attention to my Tranquility and Moderation virtues. I am in to meditating so I think I’m going to try to use that to help me find peace with it and take the situation with Moderation so I don’t spend all of my time worrying about it. I hope to be able to refocus myself on my Virtues so I can get the most out of the two week experiment.

11/13-14/21

(combined days due to out of town)

Today I am officially back in town. Yesterday was definitely the highlight of my trip and I was able to practice tranquility and resolution. We finished up our workshop classes yesterday and had an award ceremony and won lots of awards for Harbinger. After that we went to the Eastern state penitentiary. This was the only activity we did in Philly that wasn’t educational and was more recreation so I was very content. There were a variety of haunted houses to go through and ghost tours which I found very interesting. Some may find it weird to find peace in haunted houses considering they are meant to scare you, but I was able to find a sense of tranquility knowing that I didn’t need to stress about anything and could just enjoy the houses. The end of a trip is always kind of sad, but I was able to practice Resolution by realizing all that I had learned and how much I enjoyed the trip. 

11/11-12/21

(combined days due to absence)

Over the past two days I have found myself staying on top of my progress and goals for this project. I would say the most prominent virtue I have been working on is order. Being in a city that is not my own without my parents has made me have to take responsibility. We have times that we are expected to be places to get started on the day and keep things running smoothly so I have to be orderly enough to make sure my plans get me everywhere on time. An example where I had to use these skills was today when my friends and I had to be at a building that is a 15 minute walk from the hotel for our tour of the day. We had gotten back to the hotel with 20 minutes to spare so we had plenty of time to walk, but two of my friends needed to grab something from the room and took too Long so I had to research the subway systems and figure out which train to take to get there on time. We barely made it but it ended up working out and I felt accomplished with my planning skills. 

11/10/21

Todays I had an exhausting yet fulfilling day. I woke up at 4 am to go to the airport, then traveled from 5:30 am-2 pm. After getting settled in the hotel room we were back at it again and left to go on our historical bus tour. Then we returned and got dinner and ice cream as a group before going to bed. The main virtues I worked towards today are order, sincerity, and tranquility. Order was very important when it came to managing my time so that I would be packed and at the airport on time This morning. I also had to plan out what time to order the airport once I got to Philly to take me from the airport to the hotel. I practiced sincerity during the bus tour of the history around Philly. I’ve never been a fan of history and it is very hard for me to stay engaged when it’s the main topic of conversation. I had to try and pay attention and act interested as the tour guide went on because I knew that this was his job and he is clearly passionate about it so I need to be respectful and not dismiss his interest based on the lack of mine. I was able to try and practice tranquility throughout the day during my travels. Traveling can be stressful for me so it took a lot of focus to make sure I wasn’t panicking about making our next flight or getting to the hotel. Overall I feel that today was a good day in the sense of virtues. 

11/09/21 blog

I am writing this at 12 am because I forgot I was supposed to start today so I guess that’s a great start to working on virtues such as Order and moderation. Today was mildly stressful to me because I had to pack for my trip tomorrow and get lots of things done in preparation for it. I definitely did things out of order for the whole day until about 10 pm when I realized I had to be up in five hours and had to pack. I wrote down categories of things I would need and then listed things under them to pack. Once I packed them I would cross them off the list. This strategy definitely helped me find Order and I think that me realizing that I needed to think of my moderation of  sleep definitely helped me prioritize getting important things done. 

Reflection 11/19/21

Like Franklin I ended up struggling the most with my Order virtue. It just was so hard to bring Order to the busyness of life. The ability to do such is something that I have struggled with for my entire life, and I wish to continue this virtue even after the project is over. Some days when I did do well at this virtue it really brought me back to the essence of why I chose to focus on it. The days with strong order would lead to bettering all of my other virtues. If I could simply focus on organizing and ordering my day, then I would have more time to focus on my other virtues. The virtue of Order was the key to all other virtues. Although I acknowledged to some extent this at the beginning of the project, my appreciation of this fact has only grown with the progression of the project. Although I was able to bring this key with me for much of this journey, my Order was not always perfect and I often would lock myself out of the rest of my virtues. Moving forward I need to start scheduling out my days and allocating appropriate time for each of my activities. This will allow me to gain better control over my life and finally allow me to have structure in my busiest of days.

Despite my struggles on Order, I still had success in my virtue of Industry. Before the project I seemed to always do everything in the least efficient way possible. If I had a thirty minute assignment, I would somehow find a way to take an hour to finish it. I have learned strategies along the way including setting a specific time for me to do my homework. This made me focus in on the time it takes and ultimately gave me goals for the specific assignment. This really helped me to have more free time and time to myself as I now was not spending so much time on homework. I expect to keep these strategies for completing work quicker, and I am very happy to see that I was able to make so much progress on this, because it seemed that I never had any free time before this.

I felt that even though I had varying degrees of success on each virtue, overall I did well on all of them. Even with Order, which I struggled at throughout, I still felt like the fact that I am now focusing on it and realizing my weaknesses at it is something that will benefit me for a long time. Like I said previously, my improvements in Industry were probably the main thing that I was able to improve on, but I also felt that another virtue that I did very well on was Resolution, as throughout the project I was able to stay focused on what I was doing. Another virtue that I did well on was Justice. I think this is something that I really would like to keep with me even after the project since being able to treat others objectively and not let feelings get in the way is something that is so important to successfully getting along with people. Although I did not do as well on Moderation as some of the other virtues, I felt like this is a beneficial one to keep with me. Being able to balance your life and not let any one aspect of your life take over, is very important to personal bliss and well being. Overall, despite some of my failures in specific virtues I still felt like I did a good job on my virtues, and they have given me many ways that I can improve my life in the future.

Reflection:

I have completed my virtues experiment and I am very proud of the outcome. Attempting to follow these virtues had a positive impact on how I act and treat others. Through this assignment I have realized that I am able to keep a promise given to myself. At the begging of this journey I made a promise with myself that I would try my hardest to better myself by following my 5 virtues. I have seen improvement in every virtue over the past 10 days. The virtue I struggled with the most would be Sincerity. Sincerity was very hard for me because of my busy schedule with sports and school work. Doing this experiment made me realize how much family time I miss with everything going on in my life. When doing this experiment, the days I was able to spend more time with my family made me a lot more happy. The conversations I have with my brother make me have a much better day and can improve my tranquility also. The virtue I had the most success with was Order. The way I maintained Order was by writing down all of my homework and to do’s in my notes app. I would check this frequently, allowing me to keep Order throughout the day. This virtues experiment helped me realize how important setting goals is for yourself because it gives you something to work for. After a good day of virtues I would feel good about myself boosting my inner moral. Overall, this journey has been very rewarding, and plan to keep some of these virtues on my mind.

Conclusion/ Reflection

I chose my virtues based on what I knew was possible as well as what I knew I needed to work on. I decided that silence was easily my most needed virtue for me to work on. I think I can positively input what I have learned and focused on while working on this blog by continuing to work on these virtues in everyday life. I would like to use my virtues not only to better my life but the people around me. I think the virtue I struggled with the most had to be “order”. Originally I wanted to show my order by keeping a schedule, but I either struggled to make a schedule or follow this schedule. I think the virtue I am most proud about has to be “silence”. If you read my blogs I comment on silence multiple times. It wasn’t necessarily the easiest to work on just because of my personality, but that is why I believe I am so proud about it. I could have wrote about silence for hours, and the examples were endless. I hope I can continue to implement silence in my life going forward. While working on this project I didn’t truly have a plan to implement the virtues everyday. If I would have a had a true plan on how to work on the virtues I believe I would have benefitted much more. I think a way to benefit off this project is by spreading the idea of the virtues. If one person a day works on virtues the world will become a much better place.

Day 9- November 18th

Hello, it is day 9 with moral perfection and it is almost over! I can’t believe it. I have come so far since the beginning and I truly feel like this experiment has changed me even if it was doing little things, because now I know what it feels like to accomplish something for myself repeatedly. There is one day left of this journey and I have been trying to think of ways I can end on a good note. As each day goes on I have noticed that I try and practice different virtues for different days but sometimes without knowing, I am working on them all. My confidence has been getting better because I have been writing in my journal nightly good things about my day and self. Forgiveness has been better, I haven’t been getting so mad at my family for certain things. Although, one thing I did today that I wish I didn’t was buying Chipotle. With frugality I have been trying to save money by eating more at home and not out, but today that fell through. My room has been extra tidy and so has my car which is great for my cleanliness virtue! I am hoping tomorrow, with it being the last day I can feel confident and content about my progress on this journey. 

Day 8- November 17th

It is now day 8 and I have had a very lazy day today. I babysat after school and honestly just wasn’t really feeling the motivation like I usually do. Instead of feeling bad about wanting to lay in bed and take a nap I decided to forgive myself because I deserved it. I think it’s 100% OK to have lazy days and not do what you normally do. It’s hard to try and do my best every day all day. I noticed that even by having lazy days I can still work on virtues. Overall, I am feeling like this experiment has been changing me for the better. I haven’t been as anxious when I am alone while working on my independence, I have been forgiving myself easier and people around me, and many more that I will get into tomorrow and the day after that. I am feeling good today but also sort of bad that I didn’t do as much as I could’ve, but there is always tomorrow!

Blog #10 Nov 19

Today, November 19 2021 marks the end of this blog journey. It has been an honorable run. Over the last week and a half I struggled heavily to remember to blog every day. If you want a perfect example of growth while blogging, I am writing this with 40 minutes left in school. Over the course of these long 7 hours I have found a couple examples of me showing my virtues. To start, I woke up and instead of falling back asleep I got straight into the shower showing my order. After getting out of the shower I prayed showing my faith and hope. Just recently a friend was making of my blog, but I showed my silence by not responding. An example of sincerity would be lending my mac book charger to a classmate even when I had never talked to him before. Overall for the last day of my blogging career it was definitely a positive. So long blog its been a pleasure.

Blog #9 Nov 18

I worked on silence on Thursday. While in 6th hour marketing I was emailing coaches, and I got a few responses, but fellow classmates did not think as highly of the emails as I did. Two classmates were just being completely rude and disrespectful. Although I was angry and annoyed I decided to keep. my mouth shut and not express my feelings. Even if they were joking I do believe, me not responding and staying relaxed showed my virtue progress. With the last day of blogging tomorrow I plan to work extra hard on virtues.

Connor Lawson – Reflection

I struggled most with my Self-control virtue. I selected this virtue because I know that I need to eat healthier and gain and retain healthy eating habits so that when I am older and my metabolism drops, I won’t get fat and unhealthy. I seriously fear getting fat and being unhealthy in the future, that is why this self-control virtue, to limit my intake of candy, junk food, and other sweets, is so important to me. I know I exercise currently, and I hope I can carry this habit into the future, at least it will be easier to do so than a healthy eating habit, since I’ve already developed a habit of exercising. During this blog, I had ups and downs regarding Self-control, somedays I would do great, not eating any junk food or sweets. Then, on other days, I could eat 3 donuts. My problem was consistency with my virtue, if I had just kept with it the whole time I would feel much better about it.

I did succeed most with regard to my tranquility virtue, of which I interpreted as keeping calm and not getting upset at trivial issues. I believe this success is because I was already a somewhat tranquil person, so I didn’t get upset unless it was warranted or needed, such as communicating in a soccer game, which is a place where you cannot be tranquil. I did benefit from this progress, because as I realized, to calm myself down about certain issues, I just have to remind myself that it’s not worth it to get angry. Just a simple reminder to myself, which started because I didn’t want to break my virtue, has helped me a lot. This is important to me because I don’t enjoy getting angry, I don’t think anyone does, especially over trivial things. So being able to not get mad over these  small incidents makes me a much happier and overall better person.

I was able to improve in some aspects of myself, but one can only do so much in 10 days. I believe I started on the path to creating some good habits, wether I ultimately failed or not. I now know a way in which I can truly calm myself down quickly. I also know that if I want to improve myself in the future, all I need to do is give myself constant reminders of what I am trying to improve and that if I keep it in the front of my mind, and one of my first thoughts throughout the day, then I can achieve my goal. If I let it slip to the back of my mind, then I start compromising myself by forgetting or choosing to abandon the virtue for a moment. I think this is why I did bad on some days with certain virtues and good on other days, I could never fully focus on all five virtues at once. I do not find myself incorrigible, and I have found a way, or formula almost, to improve myself.

Reflection- November 19

Over the course of the past couple of weeks, I had picked five virtues (Passion, Academic Acceptance, Patience, Tranquility, and Moderation), just as Franklin once did. When I first started blogging and practicing each of these virtues, I didn’t think that it would be much of a challenge. However, I was proven wrong in the sense that I had the most trouble being accepting towards my grades and school work. Academic Acceptance was the most important virtue for me, and the most challenging because I feel as though I consume myself with school, constantly worried about my grades and how they will affect me in the future. To practice Academic Acceptance, I would set reminders on my phone with smiley faces and emoji’s that would remind me to not get down on a bad grade and that grades do not define who I am. I so badly wanted to succeed in this virtue, but in reality, I sadly did not. I had some days where I did amazingly with this virtue and others where I did not do so well. For example, chemistry is a harder class, and I expect to get A’s on my tests and quizzes, but I came across a few days where I would miss a couple questions on a quiz and I would have to tell myself that it’s fine getting an imperfect score. Other days, I would get really down on myself for getting a B on any test or quiz in my classes, and I would let that one grade essentially bother me for the rest of the day. Now that my virtues assignment is over, I do not want to give up on practicing Academic Acceptance. In the future, I want to be able to look at a bad grade and not let it affect me. It is hard for me to come up with new strategies on how I can improve and practice Academic Acceptance because my last strategies did not do as well as I thought they would, but I am positive that I will create new ways for me to not get stressed over grades.

As for a virtue I was successful with, was Passion. I had been pushing myself to take photos as much as I can these last couple of weeks, and that I did. As I mentioned in one of my earlier blogs, I got to take photos for the PowderPuff game held at East, which was exhilarating. I also got to take photos of my best friend for her senior photos which was the most fun I have ever had taking photos. In order for me to have succeeded in practicing Passion, I would set my camera and camera bag somewhere visible in my room to remind me to go outside and take photos, or even view Pinterest for photo inspiration. I believe that I will benefit from this virtue by teaching myself to do what I love or want to love more and transfer that knowledge into my future. Finding your passion is very important in life, I believe that life can be mundane without finding something you truly cherish and enjoy. Being able to improve taking photos and enjoying it more has taught me to be more bold, brave, and confident with myself and my camera, which will benefit me later in life.

To conclude this amazing, virtuous journey, I am proud of my overall result, and I definitely saw improvements with myself. I tend to have a perfectionist attitude, but although I didn’t improve with every virtue like I had hoped, I have accepted the fact that failure is how you learn. As I have already stated, Academic Acceptance will be extremely difficult, but I am willing to master this virtue and challenge myself everyday. I am glad that I was able to participate on my road to moral improvement, and the main aspect that kept me motivated was the comments I got on each post. I found it encouraging having my fellow classmates being optimistic and motivational towards my virtues. I am excited to see what the future has in store for me and my prolonged voyage to Academic Acceptance

Day 10

I have started to forget to think about my five virtues. I think the first couple days I was really paying attention and trying to better myself, now I forget to practice them. Today I struggled with getting my homework done and I put it off till 9:30. I really tried to be productive but I was just not in the mood today. I had two tests and was very stressed all day, so I came home and accidentally fell asleep. I woke up around 5:30 and then had to babysit, which I think made it even harder to get my work done.

Reflection 11/19/2021

I found these five virtues being most important: Cleanliness, Order, Productivity, patience and Acceptance. I picked these out of the many ones, because these five seem to be what I struggle the most with and I think they are important skills to have to better your future self. I think learning these virtues would also benefit the people around me. I never have a plan with anything and I think that stresses other people out too. 

I found that I struggled with being productive the most. I usually put everything off till the very last minute, and I have realized that it causes so much stress. I also feel like I could be better at the things I am doing if I gave myself more time to complete them. It is also hard to hold myself accountable for doing the things such as homework that I need to get done, because I would rather do something on my phone or hangout with my friends. 

I think I made a lot of progress on acceptance. I hope this teaches me that it is okay to not have everything go my way, and I’m not always going to do things as I expected. This is mainly with school, I always expect to do so well on all my tests and work. I try very hard in school but I need to accept that I am not always going to do well. I am very much of a perfectionist when it comes to my grades, and I hate having anything but A’s. Being in high school is a lot harder, but having a B is still a good grade. 

Overall, this assignment showed me what I need to work more on. I think having to think about the five virtues everyday for almost two weeks will keep me thinking about them more often. I hope after I practice them for a couple more weeks, I will start seeing results in bettering myself.

Reflection – Nov 19

Throughout this endeavor, I have had great success in most of the spheres of which I was attempting. However, I found that the goal of Confidence was as arduous a journey as I had feared. I was often unable to meet the expectations that I had set for myself, and was left disappointed in myself.

I knew from the offset that this would be a challenge for me. I have struggled with Confidence for all of my life, though less so this year than previous ones. Even before formalizing my goals for this journey, I had begun the slow process of becoming comfortable and happy in unfamiliar spaces. I believe this to be immensely important to a happy, successful life. I had hoped to hone these sporadic attempts into a more concerted effort. I had some success in this regard, but I could not meet my own expectations.

I do not mean to imply that I had no success in this regard. I have been making small steps, and a few large ones (namely, running Ping Pong Club), but these have been few and far between. My true downfall, with regards to Confidence, was my lack of direction and strategy. For my other virtues, I set concrete goals and stratagems for achieving them. For Confidence, however, I simply told myself that I would try, a vague and rather pointless statement. I believe that, had I had a clearer idea of my goals from the beginning, I would have reached much farther.

My greatest success was in the virtue of Responsibility. Before embarking on this quest for perfection, I often struggled with procrastination, putting off work until the last moment. However, for the past two weeks, I have spent almost every night relaxing for a couple of hours after finishing my work for the day as much as two hours earlier than I had before. For many of the nights, I had little to no work whatsoever, due to my Responsibility earlier in the day. I plan to continue this trend, as I have found that it has a dramatic positive effect on my levels of stress and my mental health.

As for my other virtues, I am satisfied with my attempts. Of the other three, I believe Order was my most lacking in growth. Fortunately, it was also the virtue that needed the least growth, as I never struggled all that much with it in the first place. I did clean and organize my work, but I failed to set any habits of it to help in the future. For Resolution, I met and somewhat surpassed my expectations. Not only did I complete my goal to paint a miniature in the two-week period, it ended up being one of my favorite that I have painted. With regards to Health, I certainly succeeded, but not so much so as I did with Responsibility or Resolution. I believe my success was supremely increased due to the fortune of wonderful weather. I was able to enjoy multiple walks around my neighborhood, and running Ping Pong Club also helped immensely.

Overall, I am happy, though not overly so, with my efforts. I could have worked harder, but I certainly could have been less diligent as well. The purpose of this quest was not to dwell on my failings and go back to my old ways in despair. I shall instead take my successes and capitalize on them, creating habits that will, if all goes well, help me in becoming a better person.

Reflection

My journey to moral perfection was not at all easy, but it was not too hard either. I faced some challenges but overcame those with successes. I think that the hardest virtue for me was tranquility. I find myself to be a very tense and anxious person, so when it comes to calming down and relaxing it can be hard for me. To overcome this, I set aside time for myself each day to do something that I had been worried or stressed about. Most of the time it was cleaning my room or doing a project or homework. Setting aside time that I knew I would be able to get these things done made me a lot less anxious. It helped me a lot knowing that I would be able to get something done and not be stressed about it.

Although, it was sometimes hard to stick with my virtues, when I did, it was very rewarding. I found that the virtue I stuck with the most was my Health virtue. I tried to go to a workout class almost every day, and when I did it felt great. I worked really hard on eating healthier foods, and that was the part that came less easily, but I still improved! It felt great to know that I was doing the best things for my body that I could, and I will really try to stick with it.

To bring this whole journey to an end, I am very glad I got to do this experiment. I was successful everyday, even when it was less than the previous day. I found this journey to be so helpful for myself, and relationships with people around me. I will continue to improve myself for days and weeks and even years to come, and I cannot wait to see where this takes me.

Day 9

Today was a really nice day. I didn’t do a ton and wasn’t super busy and feel like i could have been more productive but honestly not every day has to be super productive.

cleaning: i succeeded in cleaning under my bed and i found a sweatshirt that i’ve been missing for a while so that was joyus. I also succeeded in keeping personal hygiene and keeping my space generally clean and such and i feel like i’ve been on a role with that the past couple of days. Overall i give myself a B+

Resolution: I was like 10 second late to my first class which kinda hurt this mertua today but that’s ok it will happen and i didnt let that hinder the rest of my day. I stuck to what I needed to stick to and didn’t avoid things that I wanted to avoid. overall with a few bumps this day went very well. i give myself a C+

Order: I worked on some more meal prep for the remainder of the week. I’ve found that if I know what I’m doing for food it just takes a lot of stress out of my day and I could see myself continuing this well after we end this project because it seems to be a good way to navigate food as a whole. I give myself a B+

Tranquility: I let myself take time to go slow on the day that I could. I talked to someone who always brings me a sense of calm and is a very sweet and nice person and we watched criminal minds and made really good food and its moments like those that make me feel like life is the best thing in the world. I allowed myself time at night to meditate and reflect on the day without allowing myself to over think i give myself a A-

My own personal boundaries: I was able to keep pretty good personal boundaries with how I felt people perceive me and what I was willing to do and what I was not willing to do and everything. I was supposed to give a buddy a ride when they didn’t show I texted them, gave them 15 minutes, texted them again and moved on. They had gotten a ride from someone else and had forgotten to tell me. When they explained why they weren’t there I asked them to tell me next time so I wouldn’t waste time. This seems like a really simple conversation and situation and such but it was a really big deal to me because I not only didn’t freak out when they did show but allowed myself to explain how their actions had affected me and all that which is a big step that I would have not taken in the past. Overall, I didn’t have to pay too much attention to this virtue today which I think is a good sign because it’s kinda becoming a second nature. i give myself B+

Day 10 – Nov 18th

Today is the last day of blogging, and I’m ending this experiment on a pretty good day. Being able to sleep in on late start days automatically makes my day better. Getting almost nine hours of sleep left me feeling tranquil and ready for the day. I focused on Kindness, Tranquility, and Cleanliness, and I would say they were all a success. In Spanish my class got to relax and watch Beauty and the Beast. Compared to our usual worksheet, reading, and discussion packed hour, this improved my day and especially my Tranquility. In addition, I worked on Cleanliness and Productivity by making a to-do list and organizing my schedule for Thanksgiving break. Being organized will allow me to optimize my relaxation time, while still being productive. 

Voyage of Virtues Reflection

As I worked so very hard on Tranquility, I believe that was the virtue I struggled with the most. I chose this because, as I continuously worked on this virtue everyday, stress would come around and cause me to become impatient, stressed, tired, and all together I would be short tempered with everything that happened in that specific day. This virtue was the most important to me because I am normally a calm, fun, outgoing person, but when I am stressed, I want to do nothing but work harder in school. When I get interrupted, it ruins my flow and I do not stay tranquil. I believe in order for me to get through this year without my brain exploding I need to learn tranquility, so I am able to manage my team between work, friends and school without getting overly stressed. I would like to continue volunteering, and improving myself as a whole. I would like to improve my day, so I can help improve other peoples lives.

A virtue I made an obvious improvement in is Cleanliness. Staying organized, eating right, and working out has helped my stress decrease. Living a healthy lifestyle from these past 10 days have helped with the way I sleep, and my mood. I expect to see an even bigger improvement as I plan to continue this virtue. I have a new gym membership, my family knows my commitment to eating right, and I have scheduled times to do laundry and clean my room. By setting goals and letting it be known to the people who know me best, I will be held accountable for my Cleanliness virtue. This is important to me because I think changing eating habits and my lifestyle has already helped improve my life, I cant imagine how it will help me in a time span of a year or two.

I started my voyage of virtues strong. I had a good week and I kept up with my goal of virtues. One rough day led to another, and I found myself struggling to get out of the funk. I have learned acceptance with my grade, which has decreased the amount of stress in my life, I have learned Liberality, as I hung out with friends even if I was stressed hoping to distract me, and I found it worked! Bettering my life will better me as a person. When working on getting to a less stressful lifestyle, my mood will change, I will have more free time, and have time to volunteer, make new friends, which will better me as a whole. I will see a whole new side of my life if I continue working on these virtues. I hope everyone continues their virtues past this assignment. Have a lovely break!

Reflection

This blog was definitely an adventure for me. It allowed me to actively work on becoming a better person, and it did not go without its challenges. I chose five virtues: silence, cleanliness, appreciation, bliss, and order. At first glance, this may seem easy, but this blog pushed me each and every day. I believe using these virtues as a blueprint on how to live my life in the future would be good for me and my character. I plan on thinking of these virtues in everyday life, and practicing each and every one. I will keep myself accountable, as will my friends and family I and sure.

Every virtue in this daunting list had its challenges. Some pushed me to be more put together, while some pushed me to enjoy my own life. If I had to choose, cleanliness would be the virtue I had the most trouble with. Ever since I was a kid, it has always been hard for me to clean my life up. My room and car usually are coated with my stray belongings. Some would say it is a metaphorical representation of how I live my life. I often just throw things I don’t want to deal with on the “floor”, metaphorically speaking. This blog helped me work on this flaw of mine. It allowed me to notice when my room or car was dirty, and encouraged me to fix it. Sometimes, however, the urge to do something more stimulating took over, leaving the mess still there. Although this activity did help me achieve a bit more cleanliness, it is still definitely something I will have to continue improving on.

On the other hand, there was one virtue that really improved my way of life over these past few weeks. I was unaware how powerful an effect focusing on appreciation would have on me. Every morning I would wake up to get ready and during this time I would recognize the alone time I was granted by doing so. I then would carry on my appreciation throughout the day, appreciating the little things that made my life easier. Whether it was a hot coffee, or an easy day of Calculus, I was able to appreciate so much of the good in my life. It was such a healthy practice for me, and I cannot wait to continue working on it.

This virtues affected me in ways I did not expect them to. They almost turned me into a different person completely. Before this, my family and friends would often label me as stressed and messy. Now, it seems I have a bit more of a hold on my own life. This feeling of control is so incredibly important to me. Working on these five virtues, and possibly more, will help me throughout my life. Before this assignment, I was unaware of the importance of these virtues. My life was lived sloppily and day by day. Although I wasn’t anything near perfect, I believe through work and dedication, these virtues will help my life be more productive and enjoyable.

Reflection

November 19, 2021

Around ten days ago, I began my journey of moral perfection. I picked the virtues tranquility, silence, moderation, patience, and contentment. When practicing these virtues, I found one virtue, in particular, to be the most beneficial. This virtue was moderation. I had an interesting comment from one of my peers that I would like to expand on. He said that he found it unusual that most of my efforts were being put towards allowing myself to become more relaxed. However, as I am supposed to better my life, and by extension, the lives of those around me, I think relaxing is more important than it seems. Focusing on these virtues allowed me to really become introspective about my life, and choose the best and most productive paths for myself going forward.

If I am reflecting on my journey honestly, I would have to say that I struggled to practice these virtues more than I could have imagined. The virtue that I found to be the most difficult was patience. Patience was difficult to record and remember. I selected patience because sometimes I think that I am a bit brash and unwilling to learn from others. Being patient was important to me so that I could really listen and gain new knowledge and insight from others. Although I feel like I improved, I still had a hard time remembering to be patient with others on my busy days. I am planning to continue to practice this virtue as I did find some success in it. My belief is that I will become more open-minded and an active listener if I continue practicing patience.

Although I saw many improvements in all of my virtues, I found that my greatest success was in moderation. As a busy person, moderation allowed me to slow down and really begin to take time to enjoy people and activities that make me happy. I now try to add moderation into my schedule each day, and honestly, I feel much more joy in my life than I had in a long time. This happiness has spread to every corner of my life making even the most menial tasks enjoyable.

Overall, I found my progress with these virtues to not be exactly what I wanted, but to still be a success. I am very proud of how hard I worked on focusing on my virtues, even in my busy life. The recorded progress has provided me with more insight into my life and the things that I need to incorporate in my life to bring me joy and peace. I never thought that I would be proud of being a “speckled ax,” or someone who is content with not achieving perfection, but practicing new things take patience and time, and now I am beginning to see the good side of both.

Day 9 – Nov 17th

My virtues of focus today were Acceptance, Tranquility, and Kindness. I had a physics test yesterday and I felt like it was very easy. When I got my grade back today, I was a little disappointed because I was expecting a higher score. However, I accepted that I am not perfect and let it go. I’m a perfectionist when it comes to school, so I am proud of myself for accepting my grade and moving on. Tennis practice was enjoyable, and I got good exercise which allowed me to feel more relaxed the rest of the day. I have found that exercise is a great way for me to boost Tranquility and relieve stress. Finally, I worked on the virtue Kindness. My tennis club is collecting donations for the Johnson County Christmas Bureau, so I decided to donate multiple cans of food. I hope my donations help people in need and I want to continue to spread kindness and positivity in the community.

Day 10

Today I focused on creative productivity and industry. I experienced success in creative productivity, though not as much as I would have liked. I’ve agreed to help out a friend and do a scene in a play (Almost Maine) that is going on this weekend, as the actress who was originally going to play the role got Covid and had to skip. The play is happening on Saturday and I got the script Wednesday night. However, I didn’t start working until tonight when I realized that I had four long pages of dialogue that had to be ready in two days (on top of school and work). Feeling a little stressed out and hopefully, I will be able to pull that off. I do give myself points for working on it. I also had a freelancer meeting today after school and we were very productive with rating, which is positive. So, all in all, I’d say it was a fairly creatively productive day and I’d give myself a 4/5.

My industry today was definitely not as impressive as it was yesterday, although it wasn’t totally bad. I had a headache while working on homework and that really impaired my ability to focus and be productive. Plus I got distracted talking on the phone with a friend. I might have been able to overcome this had one of my Apush assignments not been so grueling, but, as it was, I was unable to keep a positive mindset. Despite all of this, I did manage to get some work done, but it was far less productive than I would have liked. I give myself a 3/5 on industry.

Reflection – November 19, 2021

For my five virtues — Order, Cleanliness, Balance, Patience, and Kindness — I would say I was relatively successful. I could use this assignment as evident of my positive place in society by showing these blogs and genuinely seeing how I was working on being a better person, for my others around me as well as myself. I would like to keep up with improving on these virtues and maintaining good and positive energy to the community.

Working on moral perfection was a great process for me. The virtue I struggled with the most was definitely balance. However, I expected this to come a little bit harder for me because of my busy schedule and school filled evenings (usually), on top of sports and my much needed alone time. I selected balance for the purpose of spending more time with family and friends, while also not letting school and health go down the drain. In order to master this virtue, I believe I need to keep working on it, and remain consistent with carving out time strictly for balance.

I believe I most improved in my Order virtue. It started a habit of me organizing my room every morning before leaving, getting organized and having a good breakfast, and making sure all my work and activities for my day are planned out. While I had done some of this before, it was never a habit nor consistent in my everyday life, giving a much more minuscule benefit. I expect this to help with my stress and simply make my days run smoother with less chaos. This important to me in order to keep my anxiety low and enjoy everyday, regardless of what happens.

Overall, I greatly benefitted from every virtue in some way. With Order, I have become more organized and been able to create methods to remain this way after this assignment. Cleanliness additionally helped me stay more organized, yet also serve the purpose to cleanse my mind and body, in a very positive way. With Balance, I have been able to seek time to carve out for family, friends, myself everyday in relation to school and other activities also. Patience helped me take everything a little bit slower and just relax, no matter what people around me are doing, and give myself grace in situations. Lastly, kindness, helped me focus on being more optimistic and stray far away from anything negative, especially to other people. All five virtues will help better me as a person as a whole, and I look forward to working on these and staying consistent, although I will never be perfect.

Day 10:

Today is my last day of recording these virtues, so I wanted to be my best for the day. To start off, I was able to maintain Order by writing down all my homework that is due over Thanksgiving break. I rate this method a 10/10. Next is Humility which I’m gonna rate it a 9/10. Staying humble is important and something you can always improve on. Next is Frugality. I give my Frugality a 6/10 because I spent money on gas. I can work on improving this by carpooling more with friends. Next is Tranquility. Today I had a very high Tranquility. I had tests but since I was prepared for them I had no worries. Lastly is Sincerity. Today I worked on Sincerity by offering to take my brother to his practice and giving my mom a break. It was good to have some alone time with my brother. I would give this method a 8/10. Overall it was a very successful day.

Day 10

I had a great day today! I woke up energized, which is always a great start to my day. I was ready to go to school for my odd period day. I thought about focusing on forgiveness today. I felt like I had not been doing my best with my health virtue, because I was not eating very healthy the days previously, but I decided that it was okay to forgive myself and to not let that ruin my mindset or anything else. I found it was very helpful to do this, because it let me not feel guilty, and focus on other things throughout the day. I would say today was an 8/10!

Day 9

Today I found myself focusing on tranquility. I felt very stressed and anxious for some reason, and I hated feeling that way. I decided that it would be good for me to try to relax and not stress about the little unimportant things. I got home from nannying and I was so tired, I usually never allow myself to sleep after school knowing that I won’t be able to sleep that night, but I knew my body needed it so I took a quick nap. Afterwards I found myself a lot less stressed and anxious, and I got all of my work done and even got to spend some time with my family later. We watched a movie and it was a great way to end the night.

Day: 9

Today I wanted to focus on Order. This virtue was very important for today because I have 2 tests. I maintained Order by giving myself a layout of how to complete homework and also be able to make it to soccer practice. I give this method a 9/10 because I didn’t leave anytime for free time. For Tranquility, I would give myself a 7/10 because I’m nervous for my physics test. For Humility, I would give myself a 10/10. For Frugality, I gave myself a 10/10 because I was been able to save my money. Lastly is Sincerity. Today my sincerity was a 4/10, because with all my homework and soccer practice, I only got to eat dinner with my family.

Day #11 – 11/18/21

I’m not going to lie, this day was probably one of the hardest and most stressful I’ve had throughout the duration of this blog, and with that I’ll try to be gentle on my failures, as as much as one tries to control emotions it’s hard; I ended up just riding them out. In regards to Regulation, I’m really happy with the general progress I’ve made, though I think my sleep schedule is shifting and I don’t quite know how I feel about that (considering it’s shifting towards school hours when a break is about to happen). As well, I only used my phone for about 5-10 minutes before bed, and then went to bed soon after. I do wish to eliminate the habit in entirety, but going from hours to minutes is a pretty large step. In regards to Resolution, I realized today that once I have a clear and concise plan for my difficult work, I do well with completing it. Specifically, I learned that for chemistry, and was able to complete what I wished to complete. As well, I’ve been better on setting out when I’m hanging out with friends, and my limits on such. In regards to Enjoyment, I’ve been trying my best, but in general it’s hard to find success in it each day, as I have to figure out what I want to do with my time in the first place, and that’s already difficult. Spending time with friends is where I got most of the Enjoyment this day, but I also had a really nice FaceTime call with my sister. In regards to Awareness, I’ve not only been better about recognizing my skin-picking, but also other nervous habits, and I participated in few of them throughout the day despite the stress I’ve been feeling. My weakest was definitely Sincerity, but I always find it hard to be Sincere when having an anxiety attack, and I think the fact that I recognized that difficulty during the moment was progress enough. However, I wish I could find it in myself to be a bit more open about it afterward, as I know sometimes I concern the individuals without the intention to do so.

Sleep Log

8:56 – Ended Call with Sister
9:02 – Milk
9:17 – Pajamas + In Bed + Lights Of

9:39 – 6:17 AM – 8:38 Hours – 87 Sleep Score, One Notable Wake Up (1:56 – 2:15)

Tomorrow, I hope to continue my pattern of Awareness. As well, I think I simply need some time to reflect on my general social life and priorities, as of now I feel discombobulated and I think that is generally causing me to be weak in regards to Sincerity. As well, after the course of this blog I wish to further work on recognizing what brings me joy, and continue my nightly schedule Regulation.

Post 6: November 18

Today was just like any other Thursday. Late start is always amazing, but somehow the day seems to take forever.  After school we had our first day of basketball practice, accomplishing my physical health virtue.  We received all our gear and then transitioned into brainstorming standards we wanted to set and work on for the rest of the season, very similar to our task with our virtues.  For dinner we went out to a pizza place called 1889.  It was a nice break from our ordinary nights at the Eck household. This break was important because it created a balance between school and home. Although the break was nice, it affected the order of the rest of my night. I was up so late trying to catch up on work and finish homework for the next day. Since I was up so late, I just had to accept the fact that I was not going to get a lot of sleep. I did not spend a ton of time in my room today so I managed to keep it pretty clean.

Nicholas Karr – Day 10

Industry: 3
Order: 3
Flexibility: 3
Resolution: 4
Tranquility: 1

Today was a difficult day for my virtues. I’m done with feeling sick, but the work still stacked up. My tranquility rating is low because I spent a lot of time worrying about a science test. In the end, I did fine on it so it wasn’t really a valuable concern. It’s very difficult to strike a balance between being legitimately concerned and too anxious. I have a better score for both industry and order because I studied for it about as well as possible. Resolution is high because I spent a while after school working on a long-term project. It will continue throughout Thanksgiving break. That will also be a great chance to refine my tranquility and go on a nice road trip. Finally, my flexibility is a 3 because I successfully adapted to the test I was taking.

Post 5: November 17

Today is the day I finally tackled my messy room. Although it is not perfect, I am able to say I achieved my virtue of cleanliness for the day.  After school I had my final day of basketball tryouts.  I know I will be able to continue to work on my virtue of physical health because we will have practice everyday.  At the end of tryouts we were told our teams, but before finding out I had already accepted the results because there was nothing I could change now. It would have been unnecessary stress to worry about something out of my control at that point. Tonight I was able to relax. I balanced my crazy week with a night to just decompress and not worry about school. 

Post 4: November 16

Today I was able to achieve the majority of my virtues.  During seminar, I took a physics quiz I had missed from being absent the previous week, and then I completed my math homework.  I was able to achieve my virtue order through my productivity and efforts towards school.  Just like yesterday, I had basketball tryouts again which checked physical health off my list of things to work on.  After getting home for the night, I studied for my physics test. I completed all of the review and accepted the grade I was going to get on the test because I had done all the preparation I could do.  Without a surprise, my room is still messy with a suitcase and clothes scattered everywhere so cleanliness still needs to be more of a priority.