“Death is not the biggest fear we have; our biggest fear is taking the risk to be alive – the risk to be alive and express what we really are.” ― Miguel Ruiz
I love to read and believe that knowledge is one way we can transform and grow and as a person.
There are countless must-read books when it comes to personal development, and I ran across a post on Facebook today that reminded of one such book.
I wanted to share some simple but powerful tips from the book The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz.
It is an easy read but is filled with profound wisdom.
If you haven’t read this book I would certainly recommend it as a resource for self-improvement.
Here are the four agreements in a nutshell.
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 your power of your word in the direction of truth and love.” – Miguel Ruiz
Our word means so much more than we realize. What we say and how our actions line up with what we say are equally important. If you say your going to do something follow through. You will feel better about yourself and have greater respect from others.
As well, practice being an encouraging and uplifting presence. Speak with optimism and praise toward people and you will not only change their life but you will change your own.
2. Don’t take anything personally
“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” ― Miguel Ruiz
How often do you take other peoples’ comments and actions personally? It is easy to assume we have something to do with their motives, but let’s face it; we are all more focused on ourselves than other people.
Part of living with greater peace and contentment is realizing that other our worried about themselves more than us. We can’t control other people, but we can control how we respond to them. Don’t create drama in your life by taking things personally. Sorry but just not that important, none of us are!
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.” – Miguel Ruiz
The assumptions we have about other people and how they will react to us can truly hold us back.
Maybe there is something you really want to do but are afraid to do it because you assume that other people would be disappointed in you?
Or maybe you are unable to fully express yourself because you assume other people wouldn’t understand or would respond negatively.
Let go of assumptions! The only way you can test an assumption is to do or say what you desire.
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.” ― Miguel Ruiz
I find this agreement to be the most valuable in my life. I often tell my coaching client’s this agreement as well. As long as we are doing our best, that is all we can do.
Like the book explains, our personal best will fluctuate from day to day, but as long as we make an effort and try we are doing what we can to create opportunities and improve our situation. Take it easy on yourself and just do your best!
Well that is the gist of the book. I would suggest you read it on your own to get the full impact.
Remember too, that knowledge must be translated into action to really get results.
How can you apply these agreements in your life?