Experience is a harsh teacher. But many of us only learn by making mistakes and hopefully learning and growing. Instead, Ben Franklin learned in as many ways as possible. Yes, he believed in experimentation but he wanted to live based on age-old wisdom. Ben Franklin did not have to reinvent the wheel and with his help, neither do we.
Franklin like so many successful people through the ages used reading or now watching as an easy learning technique. Youtube and the wide availability of eBooks make watching or reading on almost any topic possible wherever you are.
Reflection is a key part of learning for outstanding people. Consuming information without reflecting often leads to overwhelmed and prevents new skills from sticking. A calendar, journal, diary or even a checklist like Franklin’s assist reflection. It gives a chance to think out the lessons learned and develop new ideas.
At heart, Franklin was a scientist who believed in experimentation. It is essential for life’s progress. Test new theories or ideas, no matter how crazy they are. Neither learning nor innovation comes from constantly repeating. Even if the experiment fails, valuable lessons are learned. To empower selfhealing we have to try many practices, techniques and modalities to learn what works in our unique body & circumstances.
Perfectionism is thought of at the least as difficult and at worst a disorder. Hence, we do not strive to be perfect. What is strived for today is excellence. We individually work towards success in our relationships, health and life. Interestingly, Franklin recognized himself as the most important obstacle in arriving at moral perfection. Today we use excellence as a substitute for perfection.
He was brilliant in all areas but even he conceded that “moral perfection” in a human being would be a much harder feat than all of the things he’d accomplished throughout his life.
When Franklin created his 13 Virtues, as a young man, he envisioned them to be tackled one at a time, which scientific research has proven to be a good idea. He was tackling faults and understood that it would require more than constant monitoring and self-evaluation. It required changing habits; which is difficult to do. Like Thomas Edison, Franklin understood persistence and diligence were keys to success. Click To Tweet
By diligence and patience, the mouse bit in two the cable.— Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Franklin recognized that recording his behavior helped to change. First, he noticed his behavior, then he saw or observed the patterns in his actions. He turned self-improvement or in his words “moral perfection” into a science by observing, recording, and measuring his behavioral patterns. That scientific method is needed to empower our selfhealing.
The diversity and simplicity of his virtues I find intriguing. Covering large and small aspects of a balanced, productive and good life Franklin focused on one virtue at a time and then he started all over again.Search others for their virtues, thyself for thy vices.— Benjamin Franklin Click To Tweet
With the above quote in mind, I challenged myself to a year of Franklin’s self improvement virtues and had many positive outcomes. It is really is the mother of all coaching programs. Try the Franklin Challenge for 2018. At the beginning of each month, for each virtue, I will post suggestions to incorporate into your challenge. Do you have the gall to take on the mother of all transformations?
Start with the challenge… For support buy calendars for yourself and family and friends.
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