A Nice Way to Go Through Life…

A good friend emailed me from out of the blue with this… I thought I’d share it.

“The 4 Agreements” by don Miguel Ruiz.

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.

When I started meditation and got into it pretty well, I noticed that I became incapable of gossiping. I don’t know what happened, but meditation knocked it out of me. If I’m with someone that is gossiping I listen and change the subject. I don’t speak badly of someone except with them. I have a bad habit of telling the truth when someone asks. I figure – if they didn’t want to know they wouldn’t have asked. I don’t play the game where I sugar-coat things and make them feel ok about whatever it is I disagree with or that I see in them.

At times I drop bombs. I had a site called, “Mindbombs.com” for a while – I’ve since let it go… but the idea was that I liked dropping mindbombs (truths that hurt) at times when someone least expects it… The best time is when someone thinks they’re getting along with me well and we’re really having a meaningful experience – whatever that might be… and they ask me something and I truthfully respond. Jaws drop and it shakes them for a few days… Sometimes it rings them out and they don’t come back for anymore.

I have this idea that being truthful with someone about nearly all situations is what I can offer them that is something that few others will offer them. I can give them a gift by cracking their cranium just a little bit… enough to hurt but hopefully enough to give them a perspective that they haven’t heard about themselves.

I really liked number 2. “When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering. I like this one so much because this is the thing taht set me free in my mind at about age 16. I was talking to my Uncle John and he was telling me some life advice… he said something about me looking out for myself and that nobody is looking out for me more than me. Nobody. Nobody’s opinion matters more than mine because nobody else has my best interests at heart. Nobody. Just me. When I really realized the profundity of that idea it freed me of a lot of mental chains that were holding me back.

I don’t follow tradition. I don’t do things others do just because they’ve been done in the past. I question nearly everything about my life and what I’m doing so I’m not acting on tradition or according to what someone else believes I “should”. I really enjoy life in this way!

Number 3 is talking about what I like to call peoples “private logic”. In your own mind you make this reality that you think the rest of the world shares. You base actions, decisions, everything on this reality. Problems arise when your reality doesn’t match someone else’s reality. If you assume it does – you’ll find out – nobody on the planet shares your reality about everything. Definitely not about most things. Possibly not about anything.

Number 4 I have been thinking about a lot lately… doing my best at whatever I’m doing. Giving my best effort to whatever I’m doing. Slowing down and concentrating on whatever it is that I’m doing in every moment so I can put forth my best work. Its given me a great feeling lately to practice day to day life according to this idea.

What do you think of these four ideas to guide your morality… your day to day life?

Best of Life!

Vern
Find me at Twitter HERE >

6 thoughts on “A Nice Way to Go Through Life…”

  1. Good question – as it seems a bit harsh – yes? Sometimes I’m at ease with it… depending – have I already found it out about myself? If yes, then it’s not all that surprising and it’s nice to note another bit of data about how I affect people around me.

    If it’s a direct shot and something that I’ve not found out about myself I’m knocked off-balance for a bit. What a great learning opportunity though, you know? You know how rarely I get honest reactions from people? I want them, I crave them… and yet society has made us all into clones… we just do as everyone else. Trying not to hurt others’ feelings with the truth. Sure it’s our own truth, but sometimes people are going against the grain and need to find out what other people think about it. Sometimes it sucks quite frankly and if I’m not the one to tell them, maybe nobody else ever will. I don’t want to go through life not realizing I’m pissing people off on a daily basis. Why should I let someone else go through life like that? 😛

    Now, I can be tactful. What I was talking about above in which I blitz someone with a truthful response to the way they’re affecting me is usually when they’re overstepping their bounds… They’re interfering with my space… they’re talking too much about their own interests and aren’t also listening as much as they’re speaking – that’s one area I don’t have all that much patience for. Evangelical Christians, or anyone blissed out on their own religion come across like this at times.

    Or maybe they’re blowing smoke in my face as they talk. Maybe they smell and co-workers have gossiped about them for the last few months. Maybe… well, there’s lots of circumstances that might lead me to get real honest with someone.

    If it’s done with me – I look at it like – wow, someone actually cares enough to risk our friendship to let me know something really personal that’s going to hurt – but probably enable me to get through life a little easier… I’m all for that.

  2. Thanks for sharing the ‘4 agreements.’ I agree that telling someone the truth is really beneficial to the receiver. But telling the truth doesn’t mean it has to be a brutal verbal assault – it can be done directly and respectfully or, as you say Vern, tactfully.

  3. I enjoyed The Four Agreements and immediately saw the wisdom of absorbing them into my life.

    I have one question for you: are you at ease when your friends drop the truth on you as you are with telling them the unadorned truth?

  4. I definitely agree with #3. I hate when people make assumptions, because they’re usually faulty. Obviously, you’re going to inherently assume things, but you should always be polite if you do guess wrong!

  5. Vern,

    I just reread your post. It’s the middle of the night, but I was drawn to it. Even though I’ve read the Four Agreements, I appreciate your explanation and clarification of it.

    I’ve resolved to make these agreements with myself, especially #2 and #3. Looking out for our own best interests and asking for what we want are the way to happiness and joy.

    I, too, have been able to enjoy my life more by not following traditions or as Wayne Dyer calls it, participating in tribal rituals.

    I want to reach the point of absolutely no gossiping. I’ve made tremendous progress over the years, but have not gotten to complete eradication.

    Thanks for responding to my first comment. It means a lot to me.

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