Nothing But Your Best

Ryan - Iowa City, Iowa
Entered on April 29, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

As a lot of my friends know, when I was younger, I had a cousin who went to West Branch. He was an exceptional athlete and a great person. But then he died in a hunting accident at only 16. Since I was so young I never got to know him and the only things that I do know today, I have heard from other people. One thing I do know that sticks out in my mind about him is that he gave everything he had into something. Whether it was a school project or running in a track meet, he did his best.

At the high school there is a special case dedicated to him and the things he did. Inside there is a plaque with a quote on it that I have seen many times when I was younger, but I never understood it until a few years ago. It says, “If a task has once begun, never leave it ‘till it’s done; be the labor great or small, do it well or not at all.” Today I try to live by this quote. I believe that whatever has to be done, you do it the very best you can.

Even though I believe this it doesn’t mean that I follow it all the time. I will be the first one to admit that I like to procrastinate and that I am a lazy person. There are times that I have something to do that I don’t want to and I tend to do them not as well as I could. I don’t know why this happens but it is something I face very often and I try to overcome but I fear that I never will. But however there is hope. I have learned that whenever I think about giving up, stopping short, or not doing my best, I always ask myself if I could do better. If I can, I keep at it until can’t anymore.