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Stop Trying to get an A+++

focus goals joy less stress motivation productivity self-care Mar 13, 2022

Did you know you can do better than your best? I was raised to “always do my best.” So that meant I triple checked all my homework, graduated with a higher than perfect GPA (extra credit), avoided doing anything I might not immediately be amazing at, and made certain I excelled at everything: work, exercise, friendships, etc.

It. Was. Exhausting.

It was so exhausting in college, I got super sick for an entire semester.

It was so exhausting as a freelancer, I had stress dreams about excel spreadsheets. 

It was so exhausting as a mom, I spent a lot of time crying because I couldn’t live up to my own expectations.

Please listen to me. When you give more energy than you have, you steal it from other places. You get sick, you have trouble handling your emotions, you steal from your sleep. 

You steal Future You's chance at enjoying life.

It took me a long time to find the balance between doing good work (which I enjoy) and working too hard and burning out. 

  • Doing your best, doesn’t mean reaching for perfection. (It doesn’t exist.)

  • Doing your best doesn’t mean exhausting yourself. (You’re stealing that energy from somewhere.)

  • Doing your best doesn’t even mean doing better than someone else. (Why are you comparing yourself to them anyway?)

If I could go back in time, I would tell Past Mel to chill out. Stop cracking the whip. Stop trying to make time speed up. Stop thinking the only way forward is to berate yourself into doing more, more, more!

I had a fantastic conversation on the Becoming Future You podcast with my friend, Jackie. She knew Overachiever Past Mel and had some interesting insight about what she would say if she would go back in time and talk to Past Mel and Past Jackie.

Listen to the episode here!


Ask yourself: Am I trying to do better than my best? If so, what’s it costing me?



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