The First Agreement – Be Impeccable With Your Word
Growing up we are taught to say nice things because it is the right thing to do, but we are never given an actual reason to justify this. Don Miguel Ruiz, the author of The Four Agreements, describes four agreements one must promise to keep in order to achieve personal freedom. He starts off with the first agreement, being impeccable with one’s word. He constantly mentions the importance of one’s word and its impact on the world around him. The reason why it is so significant is that it can alter the way others feel about you. If you are impeccable with your word it shows that you love yourself enough to say kind words to others even when they have done you wrong. This is definitely easier said than done. Being impeccable with your word gives you inner peace because you have loved yourself enough to speak and embody love towards others. Using words of hate will make others hate you so be aware of the words you use since they have an immense amount of power.
The Second Agreement – Don’t Take Anything Personally
Our interactions with people are filled with positive and negative experiences. Sometimes people offend you, on purpose or by mistake. However, you shouldn’t take any offense to any of these comments because it’s not about you. Usually, the way people talk about you is a reflection of the way they perceive themselves. If someone is unconfident, they are constantly criticizing other people to make themselves feel better. This example allows us to see that people’s reactions and interactions with the external world are an immediate reflection of their view of themselves. This is why you shouldn’t take anything personally, because it’s never about you. It’s always about the person that is expressing themselves and interacting with the world. They are just projecting their inner thoughts and emotions to the outside. Once you become aware of this and meditate on it, according to Ruiz, you will be able to achieve personal freedom. When you realise people’s reaction towards you and the world isn’t really about you or what you’ve done, you won’t take offense to anything that is done to you, therefore, will be able to experience personal freedom.