Doing Your Best

I often discuss with my children “doing their best” at school or at whatever it is they try. Many times, especially when discussing school, the conversation will devolve to their assertion that they are doing their best and my assertion that they aren’t.

Well, of course dad is always right, right?  But what is one’s best? What defines this? Well, at least for a student, I think the following qualifies:

  • Pay Attention in Class – This is the foundation for doing your best. How will you know what is being talked about or discussed if you don’t pay attention?  Pay attention and who knows?  You may hear and learn something.  Respect the instructor and your classmates by focusing on the subject matter at hand.  Pay attention.
  • Do Your Homework – Homework is usually part of your grade.  Often times, you don’t even have to get all of the answers right to get full credit.  You simply have to turn it in.  So, do your homework.  There’s no possible way you are doing your best if you don’t do something that’s required.
  • Study – Perhaps one can pay attention in class and do their homework and then achieve their best grade possible without studying. Perhaps, but not for most folks.  Most students need to study…and if you don’t study, there’s no possible way you are doing your best.
  • Ask Questions – Let’s say you pay attention in class, do your homework and study, but you still aren’t quite getting job done.  Well, how about asking some questions?  This is a vital component of learning – interacting with teachers and students, that is, and without this interaction, it’s hard to say that one is doing their best.

If you aren’t doing these four things, but think you are doing your best, you really aren’t.  You may be trying, but you aren’t doing your best.

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