"Temperance in all things!"

~ Harry S. Truman

Extreme or Temperate?

You can see it on TV almost every day - extreme football, extreme wrestling, extreme police chases, extreme everything. The TV networks seem to be competing to capture our attention with one-upsmanship to the extreme.

If you're in your 20's to mid 30's, doing things to the extreme may be attractive to you. If you're 35-45, you may be starting to question whether it's necessary to carry things quite so far. If you're over 45, your age of wisdom may have set in - leading you in another direction - towards temperance. The good news is that it's beneficial at any age.

Recently on TV, there was an old interview with Harry Truman at the age of 77. The interviewer David Susskind asked, "To what do you attribute your energy and vitality at age 77?" Truman shot back with noticeable conviction, "Temperance in all things. I take plenty of rest, sleep well at night, and eat the right foods. That leaves me ready to face the challenges of being president."

What a simple word - "temperance." Webster defines it as "moderation in action or thought; restraint; marked by moderation, as in keeping within limits." It does not mean total abstinence or prohibition of action. It is merely a concept that takes into account reasonable, self-imposed limits.

Some see temperance as "clean living." By whatever name, it can bring peace, tranquility, good health, high self-esteem, satisfaction, and financial freedom. What are your self-imposed limits?