After surviving a workshop last week with a 187 slide PowerPoint in 1.5 hours about assessment and outcomes…my mind started to drift once it reached saturation-probably at about slide 90. I was surprised I made it that far! The information was great and so was the presentation-just a very deep topic in the field of postsecondary education for the last 1.5 hours of the work day. Not only did I learn a lot, but that day was apparently my lucky day (too bad the mega millions drawing wasn’t the same day, right). My workshop handout had the prized smiley face on the back of it which meant I was the winner of an autographed booked entitled “Kindness: Changing Our World” by Dr. Chuck Wall. I have only had a chance to skim through the book, but I must say I am looking forward to reading it. Dr. Wall started a movement entitled random acts of kindness to combat the many unfortunate random acts of violence we hear about in the media and experience in our communities. I will share more on this book as I read it. However, as I skimmed through the book it reminded me of another great book I read a few years back and have reread many times since I was initially introduced to it. For those who have not read Don Miguel Ruiz’s book “The Four Agreements” is probably the most influential book I have read. It is simple, yet profound. I found the information in the book freeing and an easy code to live by. Ruiz shares the following Four Agreements as codes to live by…and if you think about it… how could you go wrong using the agreements?
- 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.
- Don’t take anything personally. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.
- 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 misunderstanding, sadness, and drama.
- 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.
The agreements are based on Toltec Wisdom. Note: to all Bible Thumpers…don’t let the insight and wisdom from another culture scare you from benefiting from this wisdom. These agreements support Christianity, as well as other religions, and are not cause for abandoning your religious beliefs. You can learn more about the book at http://www.miguelruiz.com
These are the agreements that I use daily when I am making sense of my spoonful of life. I hope you find them useful as well.