In the film 'The Rock', Sean Connery takes a dim view of those who claim to be 'doing their best'. He comments grimly: 'Losers always whine about doing their best.' Is he right? This article tries to give an answer.
In the film, two men are set the near impossible task of disabling rocket bombs armed with nerve gas on the island of Alcatraz which has been occupied by ace rebel special forces. The lives of the five million citizens of San Francisco depend on their success. Tension is high throughout.
Sean Connery is one of the two men. He is a tough ex con. He asks his inexperienced partner, a mild mannered chemist, acted by Nicholas Cage:
"Are you ready for this?"
His partner bravely replies: " I'll do my best."
Sean Connery immediately corrects him:
"Losers always whine about doing their best."
Is Sean Connery right? Yes and No
Yes, people sometimes say they will do their best but really mean:
"I will make some effort but I don't really expect to succeed."
They use doing their best as an excuse for failure and are not in fact planning on really doing their best.
On the other hand some people mean they really will do their best whatever happens.
Such people do not always win but they often do win because so few others do their best. Those who do their best soon stand out from the majority who are content with mediocrity.
Also, doing your best allows you not to worry about the results and frees you up to focus on the task in hand. Come hell or high water, you will do your best and leave the results up to the universe. More often than not you will win.
Just saying "I will win", instead of "I will do my best", doesn’t guarantee you will win especially if the other guy says he will win.
In the recent fight between world heavyweight champion Valeri Klitscho and the British Challenger Danny Williams both men said they would win.
However, Danny did acknowledge that both he and his competitor believed that they would win and that this would make for a great fight. Danny also had the grace to say he would only win 'God willing'.
In the end Danny put up a very brave fight and lasted into the eighth round but Klitschko won and retained his world championship belt.
In my opinion there is a lot to be said for really doing your best. The result is in the lap of the gods and is not necessarily under your control. But, if you do your best you may well win. Either way you are not a loser.
If you want to see who won in the film 'The Rock', get the video or DVD and watch it!