If your best self translates to your actualised self that has achieved mastery and success, and your best life equates the perfect life that you have always dreamed of, and if these are the criteria to experience true fulfilment and happiness, are you meant to postpone fulfilment and happiness to as long as it will take for you to achieve your best self and life?
Be your best self & live your best life now
Your best self is not some future self and neither your best life some future life...
Your best self is the best person that you can be right now, according to your best knowledge and efforts, regardless of current stage in life and despite of real or perceived external and internal limitations. And your best life would be the one lived by your best self right now.
You need only ask yourself these questions to know if you're being your best self and living your best life:
Are you investing time or spending time?
People who invest time in bettering themselves personally and professionally, and engage in activities that support their overall growth and life directions yield returns in the form of joy; increased knowledge; better skills; polished character; more money; better relationships; progress and achievement of goals; and not to forget, relaxation and peace of mind because to go far, taking appropriate breaks in between is an investment.
People who spend time, engage in filler activities - activities that have no meaning or purpose except perhaps entertain - to occupy their time and thoughts so as to keep boredom at bay or derive a sense of activity. Either that or they laze around or sleep away their time.
Are you doing what's right or what's comfortable?
Often, the right thing to do and the most difficult thing to do are the same thing. But most people will opt for the comfortable thing to do because well, it is comfortable --- no confrontations; no additional or hard work; no risk; no uncertainty.
It plays out in so many areas of our lives: relationships, work, habits, and dreams --- how many times do you know the right thing to do but chose not to do it because your ego/ complacency/ fear/ insecurity/ laziness got in the way?
Are you growing or stagnating?
What areas do you concede to be lacking in and shortcomings that are blocking you from success in your personal and professional life or preventing you from becoming the person that you have always dreamed of becoming?
It's easy to blame the economy and other people for not giving you a chance or accepting you the way you are but would you not do the same if you were them? Would you be attracted by someone like yourself?
Be the kind of person that you would be attracted by in the personal and professional marketplace.
Are you upholding standards or settling?
Are you standing up for something; living with integrity; upholding your values; being kind and respectful; giving your best in your work; keeping yourself fit and healthy; giving thanks; nurturing your relationships or do you not care and would allow poor behaviours and sloppy and shoddy work?
What you put out to the World is what you will receive. If you don't expect much from and for yourself, that is as much as you will receive.
Are you moving closer to or drifting away from who you are & where you want to be?
Take a pause and do a mental stock take of where your life is now. How aligned is it with your personality, values, abilities and your true desires?
It is not uncommon for people to realize how far away they have veered from where they first started...because life's obligations, responsibilities, demands and/or tragedies hijacked their dreams, and while reacting to all these they lost sight of where they're heading.
Set your internal compass such that when outside circumstances direct you away from your path, you're able to identify it as a distraction and then steer yourself back to the trajectory of your best destination.