Friday, December 7, 2012

Give It All You Got!

Reassuring Thoughts for this Morning

Do Your Best and Forget the Rest

Perfection does not exist- 
The pressure of finals has finally kicked in. Yesterday during my French exam I completely broke down and I mean full on panic attack. I was over prepared for the test and all of sudden I just started blanking. All of the conjugations that I had learned were blurring together. I had all A's going into the exam and this one should not have been any different. But for some reason it was. Perhaps I psyched myself out because I had been studying for so long. Or maybe all the anxious energy in the air had rubbed off on me. Maybe the stress of having numerous assignments due in a short period of time has gotten to me. Or perhaps it's a combination of all of these things. I don't know exactly what lead to my panic attack or my sudden amnesia regarding French verb conjugations but I do know the result- total melt down. I left the exam feeling completely defeated and disappointed in myself. I had given it all I had and the results did not reflect my efforts or my abilities. I was hyperventilating, and crying, and smoking (in an effort to calm my nerves) all at once. I sat down and started doing some deep breathing. I called my mother. Nothing was helping. 
"Total melt down."
I was envisioning the worst. I was so angry at myself. It seemed as if all my hard work throughout the course of the semester was for nought. I blew it all on this one final test. As I started walking home, still a completely mess, I realized that I had to go back. I needed to talk to the teacher. I need some type of reassurance that it was going to be alright. I nearly ran back to the building in order to catch her before she left. She provided me with the exact comfort I needed, telling me to forget about the exam, and affirming that I would most likely be getting an A for the semester regardless of this exam grade. This answer should have made me ecstatic, but, I still couldn't move past the fact that the exam was not an accurate reflection of my abilities as a student nor my true grasp of the language. So I went home and did what any self-respecting individual would do. I ordered in a yummy dinner, enjoyed a glass (or 2) of my favorite wine, had a few more cigarettes, and snuggled with my kitty. 

Do Your Best and Forget the Rest-
Finally I began to calm down. I had done my best and that's all I could do. The test was behind me and it was time to move forward on to new tasks and assignments. So my overarching thought for this morning is: Do your best and forget the rest. I want to start with an affirmation as a means of attempting to embrace this notion-

I accept my limits, realizing that I can do no better than my best. 

We all have our limitations. None of us are perfect nor can we be the best at everything. The only way to get through life is to except these facts. Refusing to recognizing our limits and expecting perfection at all times will result in exactly what happened to me yesterday- a panic induced melt down. If we have put in our best effort than we have nothing to be ashamed of. So maybe I didn't get an A on this test. Is it in the end of the world? No. Does it accurately reflect my understanding of the language? No. Did I do all I could in preparation for the test? Absolutely. So perhaps the results will not be up to my usual standards but there is nothing I can do about that now. The test is long over and all I can do is know that I did my best and forget the rest. I don't have the time or energy to dwell on it any longer. I have other assignments and obligations to fulfill and I can't let this one upset hold me back. We all experience disappointments like this- we're excited about a gift for someone and they end up hating it, we make a proposal at work and we get shut down, we study for a test but focus on all the wrong material, we share an opinion with a friend and they disagree, we put our full effort into a final assignment and we don't get the grade we had hoped for. Life is full of these little disappointments so it is crucial that we get used to them. We need to learn that our personal best might not be the overall best. But what we lack in some areas are made up for in others. We may suck at math but have excel in languages. We might have horrible writing skills but are extremely capable when speaking. We have a fear of heights but absolutely love the ocean. We can't excel in everything. It is not possible. There always those people who seem to be perfect or have it all together but deep down they too have their limitations. If we give it all we got than that is all we can do!

"You have to accept whatever comes and the only important thing is that you meet it with the best you have to give."

- Eleanor Roosevelt

So of course Eleanor Roosevelt has been able to make my exact point in merely a single sentence. (Clearly I am not the best at writing concisely.) But who would I be if I wasn't wordy? Life is going to throw a ton of things at us- some things we are good at and some things that we are not- and all we can do is the best that we can. Maybe under these high-stress circumstances my best for this past test is a B and that is going to have to be ok. I know that I did all I could- I studied excessively, I was familiar with the material, I went back and spoke with the teacher- and there is not a single thing I would have done differently. It is time that I acknowledge that I did my best and forget the rest. Now all I can do is wait until the grade goes up and continue on with my life- more final assessments, some socializing, and relaxing in between. During the remainder of this finals period I will continue to give it all I got but hopefully I will be able to move forward with a new found perspective. I cannot expect perfection in everything I do and neither can you. All we can do is our best, realize our limitations, and be satisfied in knowing that we made our best effort. 

Never settle for anything less than your best,

And when all else fails remeber this little phrase-

So it seems that I got off in my count down somewhere along the way so if it seems that I skipped a day I apologize for the confusion. But the good news is...Christmas is even closer than I thought! Additionally I feel the need to add a Hanukkah count down (considering I am half Jewish and was in actuality raised as a Jew... I just can't help myself when it comes to Christmas though!)

18 Days Til Christmas, 2 Days Til the First Night of Hannukah

Thanks to the O.C's, Seth Cohen, for inventing "Chrismukkah" for those of us who are a little confused  !

Seth: So what's it going to be, huh? Do you want your menorah or candy cane? Hm? Hanukkah or Christmas?
Ryan: Uh...
Seth: Uh uh. Don't worry about it, buddy. Because in this house you don't have to choose. Allow me to introduce you to a little something that I like to call Chrismukkah.
Ryan: Chrismukkah?
Seth: That's right. It's the new holiday Ryan, and it's sweeping the nation.


  1. You are just what the doctor ordered--your postings are the rx I need to ward off Holiday Fever and get me through the season. Thank you!