The Way to Wealth
John Wood here, with your final edition of The Writer’s Life this week.
July 7th, 1757.
It was a big day in the history of publishing.
It’s the day Benjamin Franklin published Father Abraham's Sermon, also known as The Way to Wealth.
The Way to Wealth was a compilation of ideas and sayings from Poor Richard's Almanac, a publication Franklin put out from 1732 to 1758. It's overflowing with some of Franklin's best wisdom and best-known sayings.
Franklin (as Father Abraham, a fictitious character he created) dishes out some of the wisest advice ever committed to paper, including many of his best-known sayings. The first of which is a phrase from the Poor Richard's Almanac of 1733 – a phrase that has been repeated continually throughout the years …
"God helps them that help themselves."
Here are some of the highlights of The Way to Wealth, categorized by topic. It's timeless and relevant stuff that you should follow if you're currently trying to boost your career – and income:
Sloth, like rust, consumes faster than labor wears, while the used key is always bright.
But dost thou love life, then do not squander time, for that's the stuff life is made of.
Lost time is never found again; and what we call time-enough, always proves little enough.
He that riseth late, must trot all day, and shall scarce overtake his business at night.
Early to bed, and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.
Laziness travels so slowly, that poverty soon overtakes him.
There are no gains, without pains.
Diligence is the mother of good luck.
Doing things now
One today is worth two tomorrows.
Constant dropping wears away stones, and by diligence and patience the mouse ate in two the cable; and little strokes fell great oaks.
A life of leisure and a life of laziness are two things.
Trusting too much to others' care is the ruin of many.
Taking care of the "small" stuff
For want of a nail the shoe was lost; for want of a shoe the horse was lost, and for want of a horse the rider was lost; being overtaken and slain by the enemy, all for want of care about a horse-shoe nail.
Beware of little expenses; a small leak will sink a great ship.
Wise men learn by others' harms, fools scarcely by their own.
The value of things
If you would know the value of money, go and try to borrow some.
Keeping up with the Joneses
'Tis as truly folly for the poor to ape the rich, as for the frog to swell, in order to equal the ox.
Disdain the chain, preserve your freedom; and maintain your independency: be industrious and free; be frugal and free.
These maxims are just as relevant today as they were in Franklin’s time, which goes to show that for all the history since then, human nature remains unchanged.
If you're looking to earn more money, a good way to start is by improving your daily habits. I recently wrote an article titled “Nine Ways to Increase Your Personal Excellence Starting Today” … which will help you make sure that every day of your life is a productive winner.
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