[Noun; ~Pronunciation: /ef-fert/]
- Definition: Putting in all the work that you can possibly do. In other words: giving it your best shot, and knowing that that is more valuable than the end results alone.
“Good, better, best. Never let it rest. Until your good is better and your better is best”
– St. Jerome –
Oh, those windows! How I’d love to clean them, and how I promise myself each week that, if I find myself with just ten spare minutes, I will. Clean them. Get that “Happy New Year” window paint off. How my heart longs to do that, but how my hands ache to do a whole lot more.
This is my endless dilemma: I clean a person’s home and I have more work than hours to do said work in. What to do? What to do? In the end, I have to get my priorities straight. Toilets over showers, showers over windows, etcetera. It’s a sad fact of life, but there’s really only twenty-four hours in a day.
Even after a well spent three hours cleaning an entire house I feel unhappy. Why? Because I didn’t get to the windows! It’s that simple and that complicated; for a perfectionist nothing is ever good enough and being constantly faced with insufficient time is killing my spirits and raising my stress levels. So what to do? Work along in my own time or adopt a new game plan?
I had severe doubts, as I guessed that in fifteen minutes I could clean those seven infested/painted upon windows (they’re not that big). But what about the remaining five surrounding them? Those look spotless now, with the other ones being all out-of-date festive, but would stand out in a bad way if I’d clean the decorated ones only. And to clean all of them would mean working more overtime than I’d be comfortable with.
This is life. I am giving you an example of throwing in a lot of effort and feeling it still isn’t enough. These were just windows, but life hands us many similar situations and we assume we are expected to give more than our best at times.
Well here’s a kicker: we cannot ever be better than our best, it ends right there. There’s nothing beyond “best”. Nothing. It’s good – better – best, not good – better – best – besterer. “Best”is the limit, it’s the top of our doing (it’s also a place in the Netherlands, which just goes to show one of the people living there should google me and use this post to promote their town. Just saying).
What’s more important in life is not the outcome of everything we do, it’s the effort we put in to get there. If your effort is at 100% and so is your goodwill, then the outcome will follow. A great input will lead to a great output. Simple and easy.
So this morning, after having cleaned an entire house in three hours, I heaved a sigh and left those windows as festive as outdated Happy Holidays-windows could be. They are top priority for next week. And that’s the best I can do.