For those of you who are new around these parts, welcome. For the rest of you Elevators, you may be aware that my educational topics tend to fall into one of two camps… the doing, the motion, the physical action that will yield the reaction of results. Or the being, the leadership, the degree to which we are the creators of our lives rather than simply riding some cosmic wave and hoping for the best.
Today, I’m opening the cabinet and dusting off something that just might be the bridge between the two.
Based on Toltec wisdom and traditions that began back in 900AD, Don Miguel Ruiz depicts four of the most simple, yet most powerful principles.
When we are out of phase with these ideas, they are the source of our self-limiting beliefs and they rob us of joy and create needless suffering. But by honoring these basic agreements, we can gain access to transforming our lives and experience a new sense of freedom, happiness, and love.
Keep in mind, while simple to understand, they aren’t necessarily easy to implement and are even more challenging to maintain. However, with some awareness and some practice, benefits can be experienced rather quickly.
Agreement #1: Be Impeccable With Your Word. Speak with integrity. Say what you mean and mean what you say. Avoid speaking negatively about yourself, and also gossiping about others. Use your words to support truth and love.
Agreement #2: Don’t Take Anything Personally. What others say and do rarely has anything to do with us. It’s a projection of their own reality. And when delivered in an undesirable way, likely their insecurity and fear. When we become immune to the opinions and actions of others, we avoid being in the role of victim, and the needless suffering that goes along with it.
Agreement #3: Don’t Make Assumptions. Try to find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. By communicating clearly with others — rather than hoping that they got what we said — or that we fully understand them, we can avoid misunderstandings and the sadness and drama which follow.
And Agreement #4: Always Do Your Best. Our best will change from moment to moment and day to day. But if we always do our best, we can avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret. We can earn our keep with ourselves, and create the kind of self-esteem that has us buoyant in both hard and easy times. And the positive and welcoming energy that can impact others and build healthy and successful personal and professional relationships.
The entire book of the Four Agreements is only a little over 100 pages — it can even be read in a single sitting. And it can provide access to plugging some of the most common power leaks in the human dynamic.
I used to hand out a physical book and we’d pass it around the chapter. Alas, the world changes. But it’s easy to find, and if you like reach out to me and I’ll send you a more detailed description of each agreement.
Read the words, sit with the concepts, and then practice.
Oh, and for what it’s worth, try your best.
Have a powerful day!