Relearning to Do My Best. Again.

A week or two before Thanksgiving, I started feeling really crummy.  While I never really got sick, per se, I just had no energy, was having trouble with dizzy spells, weakness, etc.  I told myself I was probably just fighting off some infection or something (poorly, due to my pathetic immune system), and I’d feel better in a week or two.  But it was the beginning of a gradual consistent decline.  For a while we thought maybe the issue was a change that had been made in my medication, but it turned out that I had managed to contract mono (at my age!) from some unknown source.

As I wrote in The Four Agreements, by far the hardest point for me to follow is Always Do Your Best.

  • Your best is going to change from moment to moment;  it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to when you are sick.  Under any circumstances, simply do your best and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.

Yep, I suck at this.  Royally.  I don’t want to do Karen’s best.  I want to do Supermom’s best. AND Superwife’s best.  AND Supernanny’s best.  AND Superdaughter, Supergranddaughter, Supersister, Superfriend, and all the other Supers.  All at the same time.  Without fail.  I don’t care if I’m sick.  I can’t give myself a break just because I’m sick!

Ugh.  Alas, I was so dreadfully ill that I had no choice. I couldn’t do all the things I wanted to do.  I couldn’t even do most of the things that I NEEDED to do.  But that didn’t stop me from beating myself up for it.  If only I was stronger, or tried harder, or pushed myself a little more….

So I’ve had to reevaluate what is critical.  It’s especially hard this time of year.  I usually make home-made Christmas cards, and some home-made soaps.  Neither of those things are happening this year, and I hate it.  But it’s just not physically possible.  Intellectually, I know people will understand, but I still find it tremendously disappointing.  I tell you guys that Christmas doesn’t have to be Martha Stewart perfect to be memorable, and I believe that, but I still find myself striving for that ideal.  I have to constantly tell myself that my best today is not my best yesterday, nor is it anyone else’s best but my own.

If I get too down on myself, I actually end up accomplishing less than if I had just allowed myself to do what I am capable of, right now, in this moment.  Maybe one day I will actually learn this lesson.  I’ll keep trying.  And I’ll do my best.  🙂

How about you?  Does anyone else do this to themselves?  Does it make you feel better to know that you’re not the only one?


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