Part One. As you construct your initial post to the list, follow in Jefferson and Franklin's footsteps and write and discuss some self-help and character improvement advice with one another. In doing so, think of these and answer these questions:
What are the one or two pieces of advice do you wish you'd taken to heart earlier in your life?
Why are these lessons important to your own and our society's well-being, and you did you learn the lessons for yourself? How does your advice compare to that of Jefferson in his letter to Carr and Franklin's "The Way to Wealth?"
Make sure to read the advice your classmates post throughout the week on self- and character improvement. Respond to *two* of your classmates to whom no one has responded as yet. If everyone has received a response, then respond to the two contributions which interests you the most.
It is a basic principle of Enlightenment Public Discourse that society improves as topics are discussed and developed through the discussion of individuals. Franklin expected his advice to be discussed and debated in coffee houses, taverns, homes, and churches.
The biggest advice I received when I was younger that I wish I had taken was about money. My parents and grandparents and everyone always told me to save my money or put it in the bank or invest it. I never took their advice and in hindsight I wish I had. I know now that if I would have saved my allowance or chore money, etc. from when I was six and invested it from when I was six until now I would most likely be a millionaire.
I would say the piece of advice I wish I would have taken when I was younger would be to be humble. Pride has been a downfall of mine many different times, and it is quite unnecessary. Pride has a way of clouding your mind and impacting your judgement in a very negative way. Many times people are unable to set aside their pride and we see some of the most idiotic outcomes, such as a man murdering another over nothing more than a simple arguement. Our society, especially the government, is full of prideful people; and when one can never admit they are wrong, they can never truly take into account the opinions of others. Unfortunately I have been unlucky enough to have learned this lesson the hard way time and time again.
Alex, I totally feel the same way as you, that I wish I had listened and saved my money. I was fortunate enough to come into a good deal of money at a young age, however I did not listen to the good advice from my family and spent it all rather quickly. I have none of it now and actually have debt to show for it. Had I simply listened and saved my money my life would probably be much different right now.
It sounds Simple but advice that I wish I had listened to when I was younger would be to clean my room. Order is the vitue I will be working on now. If I had learned at a younger age the importance of keeping everyhing orderly my life would be alot less stressful now. Jefferson said that all things have their place and each part of your business should have its own time. I find it a great struggle now to ensure that my 'business' is in order and that all my things are in their place. I think that I would be able to acomplish alot more if I did not spend so much time finding things and spending so much time just to find the time to do things such as homework.
I agree with you on saving money. I also came into a great deal of money at a young age and was not wise with keeping the money and that I might need it one day. I wish I had took the advice to save money becuase a day might come when I need that money. The day has come now that I am married and have two kids and I often wish there was more money to go around.
I agree with you on the avice to be humble. I am quickly learning the importance of listening to what another person has to say insted of eing prideful and just thinking about why I am right. There are many fights in my marrage that would be avoided if I was more humble and just took the time to listen.
One piece of advice that I wish Id taken seriously earlier in life, was that situations will come to pass and to look towards the future. I think back to life in elementary, middle, and even high school, how there was so much urgency and focus on insignificant situations. In youth, those daily issues like school crushes, rumors, and annoying rules at home, would make seasons feel like forever. The "end of my world" had come several times a week! In retrospect, none of it meant anything beyond growth lessons. I could not handle stressing over everything at that magnitude, as an adult. I'm not sure how that correlates with Jefferson's letter to Carr. But, in comparison to Franklin's "Way to Wealth", rather than to take present experiences in stride, with more focus on the future, Franklin emphasized the betterment of character in present, to reinforce social and personal progression in the future.
I think that the piece of advice that I will I had listened to earlier in life was to save money. I am horrible at saving money which is why my savings account is currently empty. I just do not have anything in particular to save for, which is why I have a hard time doing so. Saving money is important to my well-being because it teaches me responsibility and it gives me a goal to look forward to. It does not really help anyone else but me. I am beginning to see more and more how important it is to save money now that I am getting older. "The Way to Wealth" is a good example of the advice that someone gave me. He talks about how staying out of debt is the way to financial success. This is one thing that I have a problem staying away from. I have debt on credit cards, but I have never missed a payment. I would really like to get these cards paid off so that I can start saving money for my future. I do not see how Thomas Jefferson's letter applies to my advice.
One piece if advice I wish I has taken to heart when I was younger was to not care what other people think of me. When I was younger I was worried about what other people thought that I let it consume my thoughts and actions. I wanted everyone to approve of me and like me. When I was younger, I got so upset when people did not like me and my first thought was, why don’t they like me? What am I doing wrong?
Since I have grown up, I have learned that it doesn’t matter what people think about you. All that matters is that you are happy and fulfilled with your self. The only people that matter in a persons life is the people that they love and the people that love them.
When I was younger I used to always care about what others thought of me as well. My mom would always tell me that it did not matter what others thought, that it only mattered what I thought about myself. That did not mean anything to me then, but now I think back to what she said and it really only matters what I think about myself and not what others think. As long as my actions and my confidence about myself makes me happy, then that is all that should matter. I am glad to hear that you feel the same way that I do about this advice.
I have trouble keeping my room clean. I know where everything is, but my schedule is so busy that the only time that I have to clean it is on the weekend. I wish that I would take the time to keep it organized during the week, but I find that it is a little easier said than done. Hopefully we can both get better at this :)
One thing that I learned that I should of listened to and taken it to heart is to always be your self no matter what. I was never a really girly girl. So now I always worry about how people will look at me different or weird if I start to dress different now. Even though I want to change my style I dont want to deal with how others will react because when I wear girly stuff everyone always say something. They dont say anything bad but I'm a shy person and dont like all the attention that people give when they complement me on what Im wearing.
When I was younger my father and Mother would always stress the importance of saving money. Today as an adult I am faced with the responsibility of managing my money and I often find it very difficult to save money. Another lesson that I wish I had taken to heart is not caring what other people think about me. In a way they relate because I spend my money on things I do not necessary need and ultimately it is approval from others.
I am struggling with organization and prioritization I tend to wait to do things in the last minute and usually end up being late especially to an appointment. When I was younger my mom used to tell me it is always better to be early then late, it is better to wait for someone then let that person wait for you. Of course I did not listen but I am trying to teach my children that now and hopefully they will not be like I was.
I agree with I have that problem too. I hate to have things unorganized but I think now days we all live a busy life and just don’t have time to make sure that everything is in the right spot. I agree with what you said it does make it easier when things are where they need to be. I have a problem with changing things around all the time and my husband gets mad at me because he can’t find easily what he need.
The one lesson that I wish I could've taken to heart and do it in everyday life is cleanliness. I've always been a slacker when it comes to cleaning up my room, cleaning the dishes and whatever else that involve cleaning. I started having this trouble once I turned into a teenager, but before then I used to be the one who always tried to keep things cleaned and organized. It is bad for myself because it shows to others that I am not responsible for myself and don't how I represent myself. It is bad for society because it is a threat towards this world. We have to make sure we keep our world clean as much as possible because I believe it is that that is destroying it. I know that it's one of my weaknesses and that I need to work on it.
In Franklin's, "The Way to Wealth" essay he talks more about the way a human being should represent themselves more than the actual wealth of money. I think cleanliness is a major factor in what Franklin was trying to express because it's a very important because it shows very good representation of ourselves.
The letter to Carr, written by Jefferson, explains in it how everyone should have some moral stability in their life. He expresses that everyone has some type of moral responsibilities but some people don't have as much experience or knowledge in it but we all have it. Cleanliness is a moral responsibility that we all have in one way or another.
Lucy, I have trouble with that also. I could never save money up and if I did I spent on something really expensive so I was back down to having no money again. It is really important to save it as an adult and I'm sure I'll be getting in the groove of saving money after a while.
Jeromy, I can honestly say that I have a real bad problem with being humble in some situations. My family is the type that will go to the end of the world just to win an argument and unfortunately, I took that It is something that I need to learn to control because I tend to argue over very stupid and little things that don't matter at all. It is tough trying to change something that you've been doing your whole life but it is a must if you want to survive in this world.