Sounds silly, doesn't it? Almost insulting if you think about it too long. Who doesn't try their best, especially when you're at the gym or doing anything vaguely athletic?
But usually what we mean is, "I'm trying my best at the moment". Sometimes it can degrade to "I don't really care but I have to do this so I'll make it look like effort and get by. I hope."
Normal human behavior. It's incredibly difficult to give everything you've got all the time. So we don't.
And that's OK. Unless...
Unless we really want to improve or grow or reap all the benefits of what we're doing. You might be running that weekend 5K as hard as you trained but I bet you'd go faster if that last 400m was into the stadium in front of 10,000 screaming fans.
So it isn't trying, after all, that we need to change. It's the circumstances of the action that we want to focus on. How could I turn this average workout into an amazing experience of excellence and triumph? Try harder? I'm trying as hard as I can so I have to look at the attitude I bring to do better. As Seth Godin says:
"On the other hand, "the circumstances" are merely our narrative, the way we're choosing to see the world. We can redefine the narrative about our circumstances with a wave of the hand."
Or in the blink of an eye. Change your world. It's in your head. And your heart.