Benjamin Franklin used to carry a list of virtues with him, and each day when he attained one of those virtues, he would place a check on the list. At some point he checked off every virtue except one: humility. His contention was as soon as he felt he was being humble, then he was no longer being humble.
As we enter the new year, I am struck by the idea of a list, or even a single trait for each of us to aspire to. Maybe there are more important resolutions than keeping a clean house. Maybe we could each boil it down to one word, one trait we would focus on for the year.
If you think that’s a good idea, let me offer few suggestions of suitable words: mercy, compassion, discipline, kindness, justice, understanding, sympathy, generosity.
Don’t use these: arrogance, selfishness, jerky jerk-face. Those won’t get you very far.
What words would you add?
Happy New Year!