What are The Four Agreements?

Posted by Harold M Rice-Erso, PhD, MSEd, CGP

What are The Four Agreements?
Harold M Rice-Erso, PhD, MSEd, CGP

In the book "The Four Agreements," an international best seller by don Miguel Ruiz, what is meant by the word agreement? And what are these four agreements?

Agreements are beliefs that we have learned and created in our lives that tell us how life works, how we should run our lives, and how to think about ourselves and each other.

These agreements tell us what will work and what won't work. Some of these agreements help us to create a good life. However, if we study our agreements carefully, we begin to see that many of them cause us a great deal of difficulty and unhappiness. Yet, we continue to use them because we have put our belief and faith in them.

Miguel Ruiz offers that if we take a deep searching inventory of our agreements, hunt out the ones that create difficulty for us, and replace those with four simply stated agreements, we will be well on our way to creating a life of love and happiness.

Those four agreements are:
1) Always be impeccable with your word,
2) Never take anything personally,
3) Never make assumptions, and
4) Always do your best.

Some people react to the four agreements saying, "Well these agreements are just common sense. They're really very simple." Yes, they are absolutely common sense and they are simple. Why then isn't everybody actively living them, or some similar perspective? Why does peoples' attention drift away so easily? Why do we so readily slip back into habits that work against our being loving and happy? Why do people find it such a challenge to live life every moment with care, respect, and responsibility? Reading and understanding The Four Agreements is easy. Genuinely living each of these four agreements is often not so easy. What does it take to do that?

I'd so enjoy talking about all this with you at a presentation and discussion I'll be doing on "The Four Agreements: Living a Life of Care, Respect, and Responsibility" on Tuesday, August 25, from 10-11:30 a.m., at Midwest CareCenter.

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