I recently read The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. It's an inspiring read, I highly recommend it. The fourth agreement is, "Always do your best. Under any circumstance, always do your best, no more and no less. But keep in mind that your best is never going to be the same from one moment to the next. Everything is alive and changing all the time, so your best will sometimes be high quality, and other times it will not be as good."
Sometimes it's the smallest little shifts in thinking that can make a big difference in our perspective, our expectation and our mindset. This simple little thought motivates me and yet also allows me to not be so hard on myself. It gives me permission to always do my best, with the recognition that my best is always shifting and changing each and every moment. If I'm sick my best is different than when I am healthy. If I am well rested my best is different than when I am drained and tired.
Even when it comes to a practice like meditating, recognizing that on some days my best is 5 minutes and on other days it might be 20 minutes. This little perspective shift gives me permission to do my best, no matter what that is at this moment, no more and no less.
It helps me to remember that we can always choose again. Every moment of every day we can choose again. We can choose to be happy, we can choose our reaction, we can choose our habits, we can choose to live in the present, and we can choose to do our best, no more and no less. No one moment defines us, a series of small moments creates our legacy. We get to choose each and every moment to do our best in this moment in time.
Don Miguel Ruiz goes on to say, "If you do your best always, over and over again, you will become a master of transformation. Practice makes the master. By doing your best you become a master. Everything you have ever learned, you learned through repetition. You learned to write, to drive, and even to walk by repetition. You are a master of speaking your language because you practiced. Action is what makes the difference."
If you keep putting one foot in front of the other, take small steps in the right direction, and always do your best, no more and no less, you will be amazed at what you are able to accomplish!