Being my best

Friday, September 14, 2012 Permalink

I often think of myself as a slacker. In fact, I’m fairly sure I describe myself that way to others: lazy, apathetic and sometimes just pathetic. I’m a quitter, I say. But some stuff’s been happening lately that makes me realise I’m actually not – a slacker or quitter that is (as I can certainly be apathetic or lazy SOMETIMES!).

dollhouse - being my best

I’m watching the US TV series, Dollhouse, which lasted a season or two before being axed. As a Joss Whedon fan I was looking forward to the show when I heard of it a couple of years ago. And it’s finally reached our free-to-air TV screens. Better late than never, I guess.

It’s not Joss’s best work though the concept is interesting – empty minds in beautiful bodies able to become absolutely anything. It says something about the power of the mind doesn’t it?! (Well, it would if it wasn’t just a TV show!) A ‘doll’ just has to be programmed with the skills of an assassin or the ability to practice medicine and – Abracadabra – when they wake from having the memories planted, they can do just that.

Because our local station has been showing double episodes and I’ve recently been embroiled in a book-reading fetish, I caught up with a half a dozen episodes last weekend. The binge-viewing has meant I’ve picked up on something (only appearing recently)  the dolls are obviously programmed to say while in their doll state: “I try to be my best.”

And I realise I love this quote. There are SO many motivational pictures and montages out there. My Facebook stream is littered with them every day. I occasionally use them in my posts and have an entire Pinterest folder dedicated to them (aptly named Wanky motivational quotes as, while I like them when I come across them, I’m not likely to commit them to memory or post them about my apartment). I’m less into the rah-rah ‘fitness’ ones and more into the deeper life-lesson ones I must confess… but each to his own. (Plus I just cannot relate to the chicks in their sports bras and incredibly ripped abs! Whatevs!!!)

So many of the fitness ones are hard core and full of grim determination. They’re angry and all about going hard or going home. They’re about success and failure.

Which (finally) brings me back to my point (and I know you were wondering if that would happen!). I strive for perfection. I’m a perfectionist. It’s a bad habit. I’m scared by the notion of failure. I’d rather not try. And I realise that’s where I’m wrong.

The Dollhouse quote aspires to perfection and talks about being one’s best. But it also recognises that all one can do is try.

My dad used to promote the “It doesn’t matter if you win or lose; as long as your try your hardest” mantra. He didn’t walk that talk, but he tried to give my brother and I that message. (We obviously saw through his zen facade in that respect!!!)

I’m about to make some big changes in my life – finishing up work (in its current form – ie. the thing that’s central to my life) and focus on other stuff for a while. I’m jumping out of a plane. And, although I’m wearing a parachute I still might come crashing down to the ground.

I want to be my best. I need to be my best. But I also need to be prepared to fail. I’m realising that all I can do is, take a chance and ‘try’ to be my best.

Can you relate?


  • Char
    September 14, 2012

    Nice post. It’s a great reminder of what I used to tell my kids – but is so applicable to myself.

    Not sure what you mean by angry fitness quotes. My favourite is ‘trample the weak, hurdle the dead.’ Aaahh I DO see what you mean.

    And my Favourite Dr Seuss quote? ‘I can read with my eyes shut but it makes my eyes burn.’ Got nothing to do with being my best just laughing at my husband when he falls asleep while reading.

    • Debbish
      September 14, 2012

      Hi Char…. Love that Dr Seuss quote!

  • Lou Lou
    September 14, 2012

    Oh I just love that Dr Seuss quote!

    • Debbish
      September 14, 2012

      I know Lou Lou… isn’t it great!?!

  • KCLAnderson (Karen)
    September 15, 2012

    I am so with you on those angry fitness quotes/posters. It’s the war mentality, I tell ya!

    Anyway, I love what you have to say here and it reminds me a little of the fourth of the Four Agreements: Always do you best. Your best is going to change from moment to moment. It will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.

    Note that it says “do YOUR best.” Not anyone else’s!

    • Debbish
      September 15, 2012

      I was also thinking later Karen that it’s difficult to lie to ourselves so we usually know if we’ve tried our hardest. I know I tend to be tough on myself and second guess myself but I do usually know if I’ve really given something my ‘all’.


  • Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy
    September 16, 2012

    I love that Dr Seuss quote. I love all Dr Seuss quotes and actually put one in my wedding vows 🙂

    • Debbish
      September 16, 2012

      Wow Dannii… now I’m intrigued and keen to hear which one you used!

  • Marion
    September 16, 2012

    Hi Deb! I think you’re talking about trusting yourself, right?

    When I was in law school, I sat down with a law school professor and we talked about me trusting myself. He advised me to , “Go see a movie!” during the week before finals because he was absolutely certain that my problem wasn’t doing my best, but my mindset about everything I do. You’re not a slacker, as you well know, that’s just a mind game to explain what you feel when you’re tired.

    I would also say that you have to grade yourself at least by semester. Sure, there will be down days, but everyone has those. Overall, they look small and insignificant beside your very best days, which should get huge grades from you.

    Good luck on all of your changes. I have found that almost everything tried turns out much better than I expect. Let’s put it this way: I have lots of anxiety about future change! But it turns out to be none of the alternative nightmares I imagine in my mind. 😀

    🙂 Marion

    • Debbish
      September 17, 2012

      Yes Marion, I’ve tried to consider the worst case scenario – asking myself how bad that would be and if I could survive it… and I could. I just have to have some ‘hope’ (a hard one for me… believing there to be positives in the world!)


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