Here is a lesson that time and experience has taught me.
I would have loved to understand this in high school...
...but then I guess I needed to learn it before I could understand it.
That lesson is, doing your best doesn't always mean doing it all, doing it perfectly, or doing it until you get "an A".
Sometimes, doing your best means surviving a day.
Sometimes doing your best means doing some really great acts of service for people around you who really need it.
Sometimes doing your best means deciding the last few points on an assignment aren't worth your sanity, your sleep, or your health.
Sometimes doing your best means being the strong one in others' crises.
But, sometimes doing your best means taking care of yourself, letting others get help from other people, and accepting some help yourself.
Sometimes doing your best means getting a masters.
And sometimes doing your best means taking a mental health break.
I think understanding this changes the way you look at life.
It lets you be patient with yourself, and not be so hard on yourself.
It might even let you have mercy on yourself.
It makes you a more graceful, kind, compassionate person
who is pleased when they do their best,
no matter what it looks like that day,
and who looks at others,
and realizes that most of us are just trying to do our best.
It lets you sleep better at night,
and have optimism at the start of each new day.
Because your best is enough.