Life Lessons From the 1900s That Are Still Relevant Today

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Everyone’s talents are useful

Like in the early 20th century, the economy today is evolving rapidly, requiring new skills and talents to adapt to the changing world. At the same time, talents acquired from years in the workplace are still valued. And don’t be bashful about using them. As Benjamin Franklin once said, “Hide not your talents, they for use were made. What’s a sundial in the shade?”

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You are responsible for who you are

Responsibility means taking ownership of your actions and taking control of your life. This became a challenge for people in the early 20th century as life accelerated. Failure to take responsibility for who you are can result in failing in your career and your personal life.

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Forgive

Forgiveness is a theme revisited many times in the Bible. Among the biblical verses that discusses forgiveness is Matthew 6:14-15: “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” People find it hard to forgive for several reasons — they feel that the offending party should be punished or that forgiving would condone their actions. However, forgiveness is a powerful and empowering thing.

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People can change

If change means altering one’s habits and behaviors, then people have the ability to change. But the person must first recognize that his or her behaviors might be harming their lives and have the desire to make those changes.

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Learn from the past

One of the most-quoted phrases of the 20th century was by essayist and philosopher George Santayana: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”