What Have You Agreed To?

Several years ago I read a powerful little book, The Four Agreements – A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by don Miguel Ruiz. I have reread the book numerous times and given many copies away as gifts. Although there is nothing profoundly new in the book, it gives some different perspectives and some very relative questions to ask in case you don’t like your life as it is or you want life to be better.

How did we come to believe (accept, take on, adopt) the codes, beliefs, principles, concepts that we live our lives by? As children we didn’t have the opportunity to choose our beliefs, (we didn’t even get to choose our own names), but we did agree with what the outside world (parents, teachers, religion, culture) passed on to us. As long as we obeyed the rules and surrendered to the beliefs, we got praise, acceptance and rewards. And who among us does not love to be accepted and rewarded? We accepted and agreed to others’ beliefs until eventually we became a carbon copy. This set of beliefs or principles that we agreed to then became The Book of Law within our mind through which we judge everything. That which does not make us feel safe we judge as wrong. Even if the Book of Law is wrong, it makes us feel safe, for it is what we base our foundation on. This is why we need a great deal of courage to change our beliefs. We might begin by asking, “What exactly have I agreed to? Does this belief serve me well today? Is this MY belief? Is this Book of Law I have adopted and which rules my mind really MY Truth?

We are on a search for the gold (self-worth, beauty, success) and we keep searching and striving. We don’t see the gold because we are blind. We are blind because of the beliefs we have accepted. In our need to be right, we often make others wrong.   In the end our beliefs may cause us as well as others to suffer. I am not saying that we don’t need principles to live by or something to believe in, what I am saying is we need to be totally aware of what we believe, what we are agreeing to. Our agreements rule our life, if we don’t like our life, we need to change our agreements.

Miguel Ruiz presents four very powerful agreements that will break those agreements that come from fear and deplete our energy.

(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. Plant seeds of love not fear. One fear or doubt planted in the mind can create an endless drama of events. Hitler planted a message of fear that turned into mass destruction. Conversely, remember what it feels like when someone gets your attention and says “I am so thankful for you and love you so much.” Think for a moment about the seed of value and worth that has just been planted within you!

We judge ourselves far more critically than anyone else does. When you are impeccable you take responsibility for your actions, but you do not judge or blame yourself. Being impeccable with your word is the correct use of your energy. It means you use your word in the direction of truth and love for self and others.

(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 I say dream, I mean the role, the script you are playing in this world. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.

When you take something personally, it means at some level you agree with them. As soon as you agree, the poison goes through you and you are trapped in a dream of hell. You don’t have to buy into others opinions – you are not responsible for everything! The truth is that person is dealing with his or her own feelings, beliefs, and opinions. Don’t eat their emotional garbage and make it yours. Another cannot hurt you by what they say. They can touch your wounds by what they say and when you agree with it, you hurt yourself. You are writing your own script for life. Even the opinions you have about yourself are not necessarily true.

Do people lie to you? Do you lie to yourself? If they lie to you, they also lie to themselves. They are lying because they are afraid. They are afraid you will discover they are not perfect. If you get mad, it is because you are dealing with fear. If you live without fear, it is logical you will feel good.

As you make a habit of not taking anything personally, you don’t need to place your trust in what others say or do. You need only trust yourself to make responsible choices.

(3).  DON’T MAKE ASSUMPTIONS.  The problem with making assumptions is we believe they are the truth. We swear they are real! We make assumptions about what others are doing or thinking. We misunderstand, we take it personally, we blame them, and then we create a whole big drama for nothing.

All because we are afraid to ask for clarification.

It is always better to ask questions than make assumptions, because assumptions set us up for suffering. Don’t assume others think, feel, or judge the way you do. Have the courage to ask.  In addition, don’t assume others know what you think and that they will do what you want because they know you so well. Ask for what you want.

With clear communication, all your relationships will change, not only with your partner – with everyone! You won’t need to make assumptions, everything becomes clear.

(4). ALWAYS DO YOUR BEST. Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are well, as opposed to when you are sick. Regardless of the circumstances, simply do your best – whatever that is in the moment. Then you will avoid self -judgment, self-abuse, and regret.

The dream you are living is your creation. Your perception is creating the dream, your life, and your reality. Your perception can change, thereby changing your dream. You have the power to create hell and you have the power to create heaven. What is your choice? This New Year, today, can be a new beginning, new choices, and new agreements. The ball is in your court.

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~ by transformativethoughts on January 3, 2011.

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