in the words of benjamin franklin

when i consider all the possible sources of inspiration in my life, i produce a lot of names: steve jobs, gandhi, madonna, audrey hepburn, the dalai lama, anne frank, kanye west. just kidding about that last one. although i am morbidly intrigued by his ability to disregard an entire nation’s animosity toward him.

i wouldn’t necessarily place benjamin franklin at the top of the list, but i realized today that we all absolutely should. in addition to discovering some of the most useful inventions in history, he also left a legacy of profound philosophies. for one of his classes, dan is reading mr. franklin’s autobiography, and he texted me a picture today that reminded me of all this.


these are all the virtues by which benjamin franklin aspired to live. he believed in moderation, productivity and simple consideration of others. nothing too complicated or offbeat, but all his ideals fit nicely together and make a lot of sense.

though they all show preference for a certain state of mind, my favorite of the above is tranquility. my new mantra demands that i view everything for what it truly is and keep perspective. living a life on violent seas is not nearly as fun as it seems to be, and doesn’t ever allow clarity of mind. such a great reminder of vital life tenets, and even more, an impetus to focus on my own virtues. after thought and consideration, i made my own list.


most of mine are fairly self-explanatory; there are a few i thought might need explanation.

prescience: i believe in the power of planning. though i know that some of my type a tendencies get me into trouble emotionally, i still can’t deny the benefits of carefully weighing your options and mapping out the future.

pride: taking stock in who you are, what you produce and how you live.

awe: you simply must watch this.

but it’s easy enough to make a list. the harder part is infiltrating every bit of your life with the list you made. that’s what it’s all about.

2 thoughts on “in the words of benjamin franklin

  1. Love this! I love your list, and that video. There had to be a way to live well somewhere between the roller coaster and the flatline. And a sense of wonder — we can lose ours so early in life. I’m committed to exercising and growing mine. Have a great weekend, Molly!

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