As we conclude the final agreement in the book The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz we go through the first three agreements: 1.Be impeccable with your word and 2.Don’t take anything personally and 3.Don’t Make Assumptions to the final agreement: Always Do Your Best.
What does that really mean? It means that in every moment, tell yourself the truth of what your best is and then do it – no more, no less. Do your best in the circumstances of the moment. Do your best because you crave the best for yourself, because doing your best makes you happy, makes you proud, brings you peace of mind. There are no regrets, no guilt, no shame, no one looking over your shoulder to see if you could have done better. Doing your best is its own reward.
As a young therapist I made the decision that everyone was doing their best in each moment, even if I had No Clue as to how the behavior I was seeing could possibly be someone’s best. What that decision did for me was to eliminate my judgment of other people’s lives and then the subsequent plan to “fix” them. I decided that everyone had all they needed inside themselves to “fix” themselves and what I had to do was to provide a safe environment for them to do that work. I could offer tools, skills, experience and a fine sense of direction, but it was up to them to do the work of creating their own lives.
Sometimes going down a dead end road gives more knowledge than flying down the highway especially when done from a place of open hearted adventure. So you thought you wanted to be a doctor but you faint whenever you see blood. So now you know! Don’t even bother with the “Shoulda, coulda, woulda’s” just take a new direction and try your best to check that out. In the process, learn from your choices, accept the results as honest feedback about yourself, and move on. Don’t bother with the shame and guilt.
Doing your best feels good, it feels right, as if you are in the flow of Life. Doors open, other events support you and there is a sense of rightness and connection with yourself and others. It is the best habit you can have. It supports all your efforts to live the first three agreements. It creates gratitude in the heart. It is authenticity in pure form.
Try it. Do your best and see what happens. It’s magic.