The Four Agreements
I recently participated in a five-week talk series on the New York Times bestseller, The Four Agreements, by don Miguel Ruiz. The practical wisdom imparted by Ruiz is perhaps one of the simplest ways to transform and live our lives in harmony with the world around us and more importantly, in harmony with ourselves.
The Fourth Agreement, ‘Always Do Your Best’ resonated within me the most profoundly this time around as it seems to include the others within it. When we consciously do our best, the other three agreements are followed naturally and by default.
The talk series wasn’t my first exposure to The Four Agreements. Early last year I participated in a book study on the same title. It included the opportunity to do a project that reflected on what we learned in the study. I decided to make a wire sculpture of the agreements (pictured). The piece had been hanging around my living room pinned to a 2’x4’ corkboard, getting moved from space to space and corner to corner in the room since its creation. It was clearly time to do my best and finish and mount this project.
One of the most significant aha moments of the talk series for me was during the message on this fourth agreement of always doing our best. Having previously been unconsciously interpreting this agreement as being the best rather than doing my best, it struck me powerfully. That subtle distinction between being the... and doing my best suddenly clarified the understanding that our best is never going to be the same from moment to moment. On those days when nothing seems to go right, our best will be different from the days that seem to flow effortlessly in our favor.
Having this extra layer of understanding is helping me to be a bit gentler with myself when asking the question, ‘Am I doing my best in this moment?’ It’s opening new opportunities for a more positive internal dialogue especially when I’m not feeling my best.
Rest assured that we did our best to bring you another jam-packed issue of helpful and solution-based content in this edition of Natural Awakenings. I hope you enjoy it.
Maisie Raftery, Publisher