If you know me, you know I'm a huge bookworm. From small business, to ultralight backpacking, to self help, I have more than 100 audiobooks alone under my belt. My friends who want to get back into reading or just want to start, always ask me what my "favorite book" is and although I used to hesitate, I think I have found a "favorite book".
Because of its simplicity, conciseness, and practical application I dare say that currently my favorite book is "The Four Agreements" by Don Miguel Ruiz.
I've probably read/listened to The Four Agreements more than eight times over the past month and every time I learn something new that I can PRACTICALLY apply to my daily life. Curious to know what are these "four magical agreements" are?! Well here you go!
1. Be Impeccable with your Word:
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the Word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your Word in the direction of truth and love.
2. Don’t Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.
3. Don’t Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.
4. Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.
Thats it. No jargon, no lengthy to do list, no gimmicks. Just simple and well.. kinda obvious solutions that even a child could understand.
So you might be asking, HOW do I apply this to MY life?
When you feel a negative emotion, just acknowledge it and refer back to the Four Agreements. And being a HUGE fan of pneumonic devices, I've made a pneumonic to help you remember The Four Agreements when you're in a crunch.
Impressive People Ask Beautifully
1) Impressive : Impeccable. Be impeccable with your word.
2) People : Personally. Don't take anything personally.
3) Ask : Assumptions. Don't make assumptions.
4) Beautifully : Best. Always do your best.
Each word links to the one key word in each of the four agreements, so when I find myself feeling any emotional pain or fear I say that statement to myself and remake those agreements and everything falls right back into place. I am no longer angry, upset, jealous, or fearful.
It also doubles as a reminder to see the value of asking, and that asking and listening, and then speaking rather than speaking over someone is so much more beneficial than talking over someone (which my talkative self must be reminded constantly to stop doing). This even applies in business negotiation. One of the number one rules is to have the other person make the first offer and work from there.
Give the four agreements a chance and if you really take them to heart and work at it one agreement at at time and do your best (agreement #4) I know it will help you create more clarity and peace in your life.
Want to have this book?
Click on the link above to purchase; I get pennies on the dollar from amazon as referral credit, but honestly do yourself and the planet a favor and just buy it used, OR better yet go get it from the library (yes those still exist!) If you like it don't forget to give it to someone when you're done reading it! :)
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Have a good day everyone! :)