The Preamble

Amidst all of the habitual, behavioral and mental changes to be presented here dedicated to finding the best self, it’s important to first understand the underlying foundation that all of these ideas are trying to acknowledge.  Think of it this way: when you’re in your car thinking of your destination, what good is determining the best route if you don’t know what your destination looks like?  Also, the opposite is true. Imagine yourself in a mall, looking at a map of stores, when you find the one you’re looking for.  That map is completely worthless unless there’s a big red star somewhere saying “You are here.” In other words, before you can find the “best you” you first have to find your current self.  If you don’t know yourself, it’s impossible to know your best self.  If you don’t know where you are, it’s impossible to know how to get to where you’re going.  It’s only when you gradually become more self aware, and more rational, that you’re able to discover what the best you looks like, and actually start becoming that self.  So, before you begin, put aside the idea of “The Best Me,” and ask yourself if you know “The Me.”

The Best Me lifestyle of relentless self-examination and improvement is not for everyone. The challenges and suggestions posed here are the products of people searching for the best within themselves while simultaneously learning what is actually within them.  A person’s characteristics for the state of the best within him or her are purely individualistic characterizations of the best within that person, belonging only to that person, and are simply suggested upon everyone else.

Twentieth century philosopher Ayn Rand argued that the question is not whether or not to have a philosophy, but which philosophy to have:

“As a human being, you have no choice about the fact that you need a philosophy. Your only choice is whether you define your philosophy by a conscious, rational, disciplined process of thought and scrupulously logical deliberation–or let your subconscious accumulate a junk heap of unwarranted conclusions, false generalizations, undefined contradictions, undigested slogans, unidentified wishes, doubts and fears, thrown together by chance, but integrated by your subconscious into a kind of mongrel philosophy and fused into a single, solid weight: self-doubt.”

It’s this conscious and rational philosophy that allows a person to first know themselves and then strive for the best self.  Changes of unwanted routine or actions can be good, but they fail to address the underlying philosophy that guides those actions.  Without determining an underlying philosophy, or inherent principles, these changes are aimless and add to the “junk heap” of our subconscious minds because they’ve failed to align themselves with any conscious or rational guidelines.  The result, as Rand writes, is self-doubt and the worst self.  Acting to improve yourself without knowing your current self or without an idea of what the best you looks like is actually damaging the self.  By doing this, you’re throwing your being together by chance, ultimately leading to a doubtful, contradictive and muddled mind.

If the worst self is irrational and unaware, then the best self is rational and self-knowledgeable.  This is the underlying foundation that applies to everyone in striving for the best self.  The Best Me is a journey that requires constant recognition of the inefficiencies and limitations of your current state of being and a final vision of complete self-excellence. The challenges we present to you are simply a means to that destination.