How did I find out about this book? It was several years ago when read an article from Cosmopolitan Philippines magazine written by a woman who was going through a heartbreak at one point in her life. The way she narrated everything and how this book has helped her move forward was so touching. The Four Agreements is an inspiring book written by the Mexican author Don Miguel Ruiz. According to Ruiz, these agreements are essential in living a life of no regrets and less hurt.
Here are the Four Agreements and its implications in my life.
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.
-This is very powerful to me in a way that I was reminded to use my ability to communicate into something that only promotes love and truth. I admit, it is so tempting to speak against someone who has hurt or done us wrong but remembering this agreement put us in a peaceful place in our lives by not engaging into any negativity as it will do no good in us.
2. DON’T TAKE ANYTHING PERSONALLY. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say or 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.
– At least one day in our lives, we encountered a person who got angry at us, even if the reason is so pointless. I realized that behavior was demonstrated not because of me, but maybe because that person has her own issues and is going through something. But it doesn’t mean that I should be complacent. In my job where we work with the doctors, sometimes, they get angry because of work not being done competently. On my part, I should also make an effort not to be a stimulus for someone to get mad, however, if it happened, it shouldn’t take it personally.
Where else can I apply this agreement? In life, people come and go. We may have a lot of friends before, but as we move to our life’s journey, it seems like the communication with them is lessened and we hate to admit it, it seems like we are drifting apart. With this situation, we shouldn’t feel sad. We just have to accept that we are on a different stages of our lives right now, your best friend may have a family already and you are still figuring out things yourself. Let us just be happy that we met these people and had painted colors in our lives.
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.
-We are all guilty of this. How many times did we assume or worry of something that is not yet happening? Assuming for the best and worst to come has its own consequences. I finally decided to just be a realist. Being real, in the moment, present, eye-opened with what’s there and not. I’m not saying that I do not assume anymore, but as much as I can, I try to avoid it.
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-judgement, self-abuse and regret.
-For a life of no regrets and in everything we do, we should always do our best. The outcome: whether we win or lose, if it’s success or failure, it won’t matter anymore for as long as we did our best. I still feel dignified in times of failure when I know in my heart I did my best for that endeavor. It if wasn’t enough, let us strive to get better the next time.
*** I read this book three years ago when I was still in my previous job. It’s highly recommended that we go back to the lessons from the book that changed our lives because sometimes we get so caught up with everything that’s been happening in our lives. I admit that for the last 2 years, I forgot these lessons and seeing the book in my room reminded me of the wisdom that was introduced to me and that I should apply in my life.