By Engr. Carlos V. Cornejo
Many self-help books would tell us to always do our best in all that we do. Holy Scripture advises us the same thing: “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.” (Ecclesiastes 9:10) Doing our best in everything that we do will help us grow into the person God wants us to be. Our physical growth is a given. It’s a done deal unless of course we stop eating. But our intellectual, emotional, social, psychological and spiritual growth are up to us. We can choose not to grow in these areas and remain stunted, ignorant and immature. We can discuss on how to grow on these different areas some other time. For now, let’s focus on the benefits we and others acquire if we always give it our best in everything that we do.
First, we will have fewer regrets in life. When we don’t give it our best we will always have “what if’s” scenarios. “What if” I devoted more study hours in college, I could have graduated with honors. “What if” I was more caring with my wife, we would not have separated. “What if” I worked harder in my workplace, I could have been promoted and earned more while still young. We have to learn from the words of the late John Wooden, a multi-titled coach in U.S. college basketball when he said, “Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming.” When we have done our best, regardless of the outcome, it will give us peace of mind because that is the only thing we can control, our effort not the outcome. But most of the time the outcome will be favorable to us since we always reap what we sow. Even after you failed to get the reward you expected (the job, the trophy, etc.), you have no reason to reject yourself because you did what you have to do.
Second, we will acquire resilience and become a good problem solver. Since we will always give it our best, obstacles and problems along the way will not easily discouraged us. We will encounter many problems but our fighting spirit will push us to exhaust all means possible. Thus, we become more creative in solving our problems.
Third, others will benefit much from us. If we always give it our best, we could easily become the best doctor, the best accountant, the best manager, the best mechanic etc. More people will come to us for our expertise. If you are an athlete, many will come to watch you play. If you work for a company, you will help it grow and earn more profit. If you are a businessman, your business will grow by leaps and bounds and quickly expand. We have to learn from the words of Marianne Williamson, “You are a child of God. You playing small (or not doing your best) does not serve the world. In other words, your smallness doesn’t make the world a bigger place. Your success benefits everyone and everyone else’s success benefits me.”
Society is thankful and happy for people who always give their best. Can you imagine how much growth our country would achieve if all our workers will render always their best? Giving our best can even bring great honor to our country. Just look at our “pambansang kamao” Senator Manny Pacquiao. Manny always gives his 100% in every fight he undertakes. Most of the struggle in boxing comes before the fight, and I know of no other boxer who practices as intensely as our beloved Manny P. The fruits of Manny’s best effort are phenomenal. An unprecedented eight division title that gives him a strong argument to be the best pound for pound boxer of all time. But for me what impresses me most about Manny above and beyond his boxing accolades is his humility. He does not let his success get into his head but instead uses it to bring honor to the country and service to his countrymen.
Engr. Carlos V. Cornejo is the chairman of the Electronics Engineering Department of Mary our Help Technical Institute in Minglanilla, Cebu. Aside from engineering subjects, he also teaches values and Christian Doctrine classes to students in tertiary level.