Today, I found a quote from Maya Angelou on LinkedIn, “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” Originally, my blog post was going to be called “An Honest Letter To A Friend,” but this seemed to suit the post even better. 🙂
You see, we all have that person in our life. To some of you reading this post, I am that person. It is the person who continually comes to you with a problem (or a series of problems) and just can’t seem to solve them. They vent and complain, attempt to work through it with you, then go right back to square one (back to the job, relationship, bad living situation, etc).
And here’s the deal, as I say to myself and those friends, I understand. It took me a long time to get to that point; to understand that, at this point in time, you’re not ready. You’re not ready to take a step in a different direction or problem-solve in a new way – and that’s okay.
When You’re Ready…
The time will come. Just as the Maya Angelou quote says, you are doing your best. You’re doing whatever you feel is best or whatever you know is best for you right now. That’s okay. But when the time comes, the time when you know better, that’s the time to take action.
And action isn’t easy. In fact, I believe the best changes in our lives are the most difficult ones. It’s the hurdles, the massive defeats, the “broken down in the arena, but you stand back up again” moments that feel the most satisfying. The ones that you look back and say, “that was brutal, but I did it.”
I think this pandemic has been one of those moments for all of us. We cannot compare stories or paths we have taken, only acknowledge that each of us is doing our best in our own way. We are ALL doing our best, as best as we know, and I feel like we are all going to come out on the other side a different person in some way.
Time To Do Better
When we vent and return to our situation, I know a big part of it is “not being ready”; however, when it’s eating away at us that much, I believe we also subconsciously know it is something we need to solve. Maybe you achieve a solution through therapy or maybe you can handle it on your own, the ultimate solution (and action) is up to you and only you.
All of this alone time in nature has allowed me to gather my thoughts. For me, the solution is coming – I’ve tried and tried again, but now I know better. I suggest to you that you sit down and write the pros and cons lists. Talk to a friend who is going to give you honest advice, not the advice you want to hear. Make a therapy appointment and embrace the opinion and gentle direction of a neutral party. Do a little soul-searching and ultimately listen to that little voice inside of you.
Because once you know better, it’s time to do better.