President Barack Obama believes the country's best days are still ahead. In a letter to the American people Thursday, Obama took a closer look at the lasting legacy of his eight years in the White House and insisted progress—though not without being "harshly challenged" at every turn—will continue in the future.

"Today, thanks to the Affordable Care Act, another 20 million American adults know the financial security and peace of mind that comes with health insurance," Obama wrote, referencing the accomplishments of the act now under threat of Republican repeal. "Another three million children have gained health insurance. For the first time ever, more than ninety percent of Americans are insured — the highest rate ever."

Obama also noted improvements in the high school graduation rate, our dependence on foreign oil, renewably energy production, economy growth, LGBT rights, and the "longest streak of job creation" on record. "This is where America stands after eight years of progress," Obama said in the letter, part of his Cabinet Exit Memos series on Medium. "By so many measures, our country is stronger and more prosperous than it was when we started — a situation I'm proud to leave for my successor. And it's thanks to you — to the hard work you've put in; the sacrifices you've made for your families and communities; the way you've looked out for one another."

To ensure this betterment isn't completely halted in the years ahead, Obama pointed out exactly what the American people don't want from subsequent administrations:

"What won't help is taking health care away from 30 million Americans, most of them white and working class; denying overtime pay to workers, most of whom have more than earned it; or privatizing Medicare and Social Security and letting Wall Street regulate itself again — none of which middle-class Americans voted for."

The future, Obama added, is still "ours to write." Peep the full letter here.