This is part two of a multi-part series which discusses a method Ben Franklin used to develop his character as a man. Last week, I covered the first two. Today we’ll go over the next three: Resolution, Frugality, Moderation. Franklin provided a quick explanation that I’ll provide as well as my own interpretation, as well as how to employ these virtues in your life, and how it relates to red pill theory as a whole.
Virtue 3: Resolution
Resolution: Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve
I take this as doing the things you may not necessarily want to do, but the shit you have to get done in life. It means to figure out the shit that is important and devote time to it. Don’t take on more than you can handle, but don’t sit around being lazy as well. Think about things that are on your plate, and remove anything that shouldn’t be there.
The latter part means to commit to your duties 100%. Don’t be the guy going around making promises that he cannot keep. Half-assing it in life will get you nowhere and make you look like an incompetent fool. There are times you must say no to someone, so when that time comes, stand your ground. You don’t have to be a dick about it either, tell them you’re engaged in something else, and offer a time to talk/work on it later.
Virtue 4: Frugality
Frugality: Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; ie waste nothing.
I interpret Franklin’s message here as making sure you’re not pissing your money away on shit that doesn’t matter. Obviously if you make good money you’re not going to just live off of ramen and lentils but to quote Fight Club:
“The things you own end up owning you.”-Tyler Durden
Honestly you do not need to get a new smartphone every single year, nor do you need to go out and buy a brand new car. Shopping wisely is important. For example: I purchased a used, refurbished smart phone that isnt even a year old for $200 that is still retailing in stores new for $500. The thing works perfectly fine, no cosmetic issues, and I saved $300.
Franklin even accepts the fact that you need to spend money on yourself and others, within reason. Don’t limit yourself to a life of shit if you have the means to make it better. As for others, buying your kid a new toy is fine here and there, but dropping hundreds of dollars on jewelry for the wife, or some expensive gadget for the kids too often is bad. We need to teach them how to handle money, and a disregard of this teaching will set them up to be mindless consumers.
I think the biggest message is to be sensible with your cash. You may go through $300 dollars at the casino, but that money would have been better spent on something you actually need. Live and reward yourself, but be smart about it.
Virtue 5: Moderation
Moderation: Avoid extremes; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve
This in a way plays off the last virtue, but has a broader reach. Knowing how to moderate yourself is crucial. Positive and negative things can get out of control if you let them.
If you’ve been lifting weights for a month and load up 600lbs on the bar and try to bench press it, its going to end badly. Even though weightlifting is something good for you, if you try to go crazy, it becomes a danger.
Same with alcohol or junk food. Having 1 beer or a burger here and there wont do you much harm if you eat right and exercise, but chugging a case in a night or eating fast food everyday will harm your body.
The last part seems to speak to dealing with people who may have screwed up and how you react to them. If it is a minor screw up and this person is typically on point, then letting them know about it in a calm way is typically best. Tearing into someone who is typically doing things well fucks up the morale and can turn a good worker into disgruntled one.
Same goes for your family. Lashing out like a lunatic when your kid does something wrong is sending all the wrong messages (depending on age and the offense obviously.)
That wraps up part 2 of the series. Today we went over:
- Resolution: Doing what you say you will. Doing it to the best of your ability
- Frugality: Not spending excess money if you don’t have to and being smart on the things you do buy
- Moderation: Keeping things balanced and in check. Not going giving up on other areas of your life to focus on just one
Drop a comment below with any questions and insights on today’s virtues and get ready for the next article which will cover the next two virtues: Industry and Cleanliness.