Have you read The Four Agreements by don Miguel Ruiz? This little book is chock full of life-changing thoughts. It suggests a way to live that is free from offense and misunderstanding. Join Leanne’s book club to discuss applying these truths!
Welcome to Take the Upgrade Podcast Episode 37! Your host and therapist is Leanne Peterson and she’s joined by a few of her book club members, Rachelle and Natalie, to discuss The Four Agreements.
Be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions, and do your best. These are the enlightened bylaws, past down from Toltec wise men, for anyone who is striving to pull away from the mist of the world. Thanks so much for tuning in as we discuss how to reprogram and free your brain.
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We’ll be back next week with another dose of soulful guidance! Leanne is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Houston and she works with clients all over the country. She is committed to helping you find peace in the midst of difficult life situations and transitions. Using powerful insights into health and energy alignment, Leanne helps you create the beautiful life you want!
Leanne Peterson: Hello everyone, and welcome to our book club podcast today. Today we are joined by Natalie and Rachelle. Carolina couldn’t make it to this book club episode, but she’ll be back next month for our next book club.
So today we’re talking about the book The Four Agreements, and this is a book I have been quoting, and referencing for a long time, and have never actually sat down and read it. So I was really excited to read this book and see what magic was waiting for me. You know, the premise is that we’ve all been born and then are taught this outward dream that the world shares about how the world works, and the rules of the world and the agreements that we’re living by. We have a lot of these agreements that we don’t even know. What the author is suggesting is that we let go of that outward dream and come back to who we truly are, and he gives us four agreements we can use to start becoming more of who we are, and change the way we are being in the world so that we can change the way we’re perceiving the world so that we can change the way we’re feeling in the world. It all starts with us and our ability to change how we’re living so we can change our experience of living.
So that’s the book, and today I just really wanted to talk about our biggest takeaways from the book, and our “ah-ha” moments, and the things that we’re kind of incorporating into our own lives, and things that have made an impact on us from the book. That’s what we’re going to be focused on today.
Rachelle, do you want to get us started and tell us what you took, your biggest takeaways from the book, and your biggest “ah-ha” moments?
Rachelle Young: Sure. I really loved the simplicity of the four agreements. So my biggest takeaway was something that you can always have these in the back of your mind, so you can always be impeccable with your word, and try not to take anything personally, and not make assumptions, and to always do your best. I would probably say that for me, I really loved when it talked about always do your best. As a mom and a woman in our society, we often feel so burdened with expectation, where we’re expecting more of ourselves than is actually possible because we feel like others are expecting so much of us. My “ah-ha” moment was when they talked a lot about always do your best, and it says, “Look, it’s going to change from moment to moment. Your best is going to be different when you’re healthy as opposed to when you’re sick, or when you have other things going on. Do your best. Avoid the self-judgment and regret.” So I kind of took that to mean that my best today doesn’t mean that I have to try and kill myself to try and get everything that I’m thinking is expected of me accomplished. I can still give my best while still making sure to take good care of myself, to not overdo, and to not stretch myself too thin for expectations that don’t necessarily have to be a priority.
That was a big takeaway for me because, again, as a mom, I feel like, “Okay, well, if my kids don’t have a healthy, home cooked meal plus make it to practice on time, plus all these other things, and at least 30 minutes of reading, and this and that and the other, it’s okay if we have cereal for dinner one night. It’s okay if we read 20 minutes instead of 30. It’s okay to just do our best and not have it be torture.”
LP: Like it was permission. Okay, how do I need to show up today where I am? What’s my best today? Like you said, not what’s my best I imagine that the best mom ever would do this, so I need to do this every day. That’s not keeping in tune with where you’re at.
RY: Right. I think it’s important to recognize and remember that a lot of these expectation for motherhood, or even just being a woman in our society today, are a little bit unreachable. You know, we want to try and be our best, and we want to try and improve continuously, but in the process we need to understand that my best today is okay, and it doesn’t have to mean that I’ve checked off every single thing on my list. I can allow myself the grace and the freedom to say, “This is what I was able to do, and I can sleep well tonight knowing that I tried my best.”
LP: Definitely. I love that, that reset in our way of thinking. What he says along with that is if we just always commit to doing our best, we don’t have to worry so much about getting discouraged and like we’re a failure if we can’t always do what we think we should be doing. It’s more the question becomes, “Am I doing my best, and what is my best in this moment?” and honoring and reaching for that.
RY: I loved all four agreements. That was the “ah-ha” one for me. The other ones were also really great. So be impeccable with your word. That’s obviously something that I feel very strongly about, and hold myself accountable to. And one of the ways that I feel like I do that is by apologizing to my children when I’m wrong. That was something that was important to me because you guys know how much I love and praise my mother, that was one of the things that she didn’t do. So it was hard for her, you know, when she was wrong to come to her children and admit it, and it wasn’t until we were adults that she really started doing that. Once we were adults, I don’t know if she just saw us differently, but that was when, if she was wrong, she would easily and readily apologize. But as a child I remember thinking the very rare instances when she was wrong, thinking to myself, “Just admit it. Just admit it, Mom.” You know. And she never would. To me, being impeccable with my word means that I readily and easily apologize to my children and let them know that I was wrong, and that I made a mistake, and that I’m sorry. That was one that was important to me.
As far as not taking anything personally, I think everybody could improve upon that, but my goodness, my husband probably the most.
RY: The whole time I was reading it, I was like, “Darryl, please, please read this book. Learn not to take things personally.” I think the struggle for him is mostly just with our kids, so when they misbehave, he has a hard time not taking it personally, where I view it as normal kid behavior, and help correct the behavior and that kind of thing, he is just like, “I’m working so hard to provide for you kids, and this is how you treat me!” kind of a response. That’s kind of his initial response. So that, I was like, “Oh, please Darryl, read this.”
RY: But I feel like I do a decent job at not taking things personally, probably because I don’t have a hard time apologizing in general. I’m okay to say, “Look, I was wrong.” I don’t have a big hang up about that. So if somebody doesn’t like something, I usually don’t take it personally because I’m usually the first to say, “Hey, if something I did bothered you, then I’m happy to apologize, and try to adjust my behavior to make you happy,” because I’m a people pleaser, that’s just my nature.
Then don’t make assumptions. I think again, that’s another one that everybody can improve upon. As far as assumptions for me, that was another one where I was like, “Please, husband, read this.”
I think and again, goes with my 11-year-old copping an attitude, and my husband immediately assuming that he’s being disrespectful to make him angry. You know, again, it’s just one of those disconnects where he has a hard time not taking things personally and not assuming the worst, almost, in the kids. [laughing] And that’s kind of hard for me, but really he’s doing his best like The Four Agreements suggests, so me and the kids are pretty understanding.
LP: What I think, too, is, I think what The Four Agreements says, he’s probably doing his best with his awareness, but this idea, too, is we want to start expanding our awareness.
So the best he’s doing now is fine, but you can see for him, and I think we can see outside of ourselves for other people and then kind of see mirrored back to ourselves, like how much more freeing it is to live with these agreements.
Right? And in the book, it speaks to that, too, what you were talking about, like this idea that we change people, and what the book’s saying, like you need to marry someone that you love and that you don’t feel the need to change, and you want to be with someone, because like you said, ultimately, it’s, as much as you can nudge your partner—and I always say this, the biggest indicator of a good marriage in my mind is willingness. Are you with someone who’s willing to change, willing to say, “Hey, this isn’t working. I’m going to take responsibility for it and change it.”
And there’s a lot of power in that. There’s a lot of power in us being willing to step outside of ourselves and our old patterns to accept something new.
RY: It is. And I’ve told him, I said, “Look, I can see all the hard work that you’re putting in. I am not without faults, and if there’s something that you would like me to improve upon, please let me know. Because I’m willing to put in that hard work, too.” And so, he’s a typical guy, and he’s like, “Well, I don’t know. I can’t think of anything.” So you know, he can’t ever think of it until it bugs him and he’s mad.
LP: Suddenly there are some things that you should be working on.
RY: Yes. But I do love that. I love the willingness that each of us have to better ourselves, so that we can better our family unit as a whole.
LP: Exactly, and that’s what I think is the power of these agreements, is that as we see in your husband, the more he can adopt these things, the more he can enjoy his family. Right?
It’s not like a sacrifice. It’s actually like if we can adopt these agreements, and if we can work to be impeccable with our words so that we’re saying and we’re being the person we want to be, and when we’re not taking things personally, and not making assumptions, and doing our best, there’s freedom for us to actually enjoy the people around us, and enjoy the relationships we have. Because we’re not so bound by how it should be, and how we should be, and how they should be, and what they’re thinking secretly behind our backs. All of that just clogs us up.
I love that example. For me, at least, when I look around, I can see other people being confined by not having these agreements, and like I said, it’s a good reminder for myself. What ways am I confined that I can’t see? Because I don’t think the people I’m noticing probably can see it, that they’re confined, because that’s the way, it’s the norm. When we can see it for someone else, we can see it for ourselves, like, “There might be some things I can step outside of here.”
RY: Yeah. That’s what I try to focus on when I’m reading any kind of self-help topic, because I immediately think of the people around me when I think of, “Oh, this person could benefit from this, or this person could benefit from that.” So then I have to really delve further and go, “Okay, my husband’s the first one jumping to mind when I read this particular agreement, but what does that tell me about me?” Yes, I would like him to benefit from some of these things, but I could also benefit. I do have to dig deeper for my initial, “Oh man, my husband needs to read this,” kind of response. So that’s something that I try to be aware of.
Natalie, what are your biggest “ah-ha” moments from all of this?
Natalie Pyles: Oh, you know, so I had a quote I wanted to read. This was just my favorite from the book. It says, “We make the assumption that everyone sees life the way we do. We assume that others think the way we think, feel the way we feel, judge the way we judge, and abuse the way we abuse. This is the biggest assumption that humans make. This is why we have a fear of being ourselves around others, because we think everyone else will judge us, victimize us, abuse us, and blame us the way we do ourselves. This is the way the human mind works.”
So I was just really hit by that because I found a lot of truth in it, and I realized we’ve kind of been indoctrinated to feel this way. Just think back. You’re taught the Golden Rule as a kid, and that is to treat others the way you would want to be treated, and it’s like you’re assuming that they want to be treated the way you want to be treated. Which is breaking one of his four agreements.
So I’m like, “Wow, this is so ingrained in us, because we think we’re being considerate, but really we’re just assuming that other people want what we want.”
LP: And that’s such a great point you make, because it’s also that, when we take the Golden Rule the way we would interpret it, we’re missing the bigger thing, because how all of us really want to be treated is we all want to be heard. Right? Like if we really were going to treat others how we want to be treated, it would be, “Let me talk to you. Let me see. What do you want? What can I do for you?” But instead we take it to mean, like you say, we overlay our assumptions and our way of being, so instead of actually just treating someone at the core how we want to be treated, as someone who’s unique and ever-evolving and changing and deserves respect and to be met where they’re at, we overlay, “This is how the world is and this is how it should be for you, too.”
NP: Yeah. So here’s an example. Let’s say like I’m at a meeting and I am supposed to be giving a presentation, and I totally mess up and say all the wrong words. For some people, they might want people to come up and be like, “Oh my gosh, are you okay?” and make a big deal about it and acknowledge it, and other people might want you to just totally ignore it and never mention it again.
And since you don’t know what people are going to want, we often rush in and do the thing that we would want, not knowing that we might be making that person even more uncomfortable, because that’s not the way they would have wanted it handled. So I don’t know, how are we supposed to know what people want?
LP: Ask, right? As the book would say, not make assumptions. Like if you’re my friend, and you’re in that situation, like, “Hey, how are you doing? What do you need?” And they might say, “I just need you to pretend this never happened.” Or like, “Please tell me it was great even though it was horrible.” You know what I mean? We can still ask.
LP: What Brene Brown talks about in her book Dare to Lead she spoke about when she missed her daughter’s big game. And she said her friend handled it really well, and one thing she ended up doing was she crawled in a shirt rack and cried in the airport. And she was really thankful to the woman who was running the shop who just let her sit in the shirt rack crying.
To me, that’s just an example of that. You can’t mind read for her. Like someone might be like, “You’ve got to be there for your friend. You’ve got to be in the shoe rack with them.” And she just wanted to be alone crying. So it’s like, can we just follow other people’s lead, and again, “Hey, what do you need from me?” Because I don’t always want people to rush in and comfort me. That can be really invalidating.
NP: Yeah. Yeah. I think that’s how I am, too. So these are so great. I feel like I should just run through them one more time so that we have some context for our listeners who may not have read the book. The author is Don Miguel Ruiz. The four agreements that he lays out are to be impeccable with your word, to not take anything personally, to not make assumptions, and to do your best.
It was really neat how Rachelle kind of hit on all of these, and she was able to tie them all together. They really build on each other, too, as you’re trying to clean up your thinking. Lots of this probably lends itself to clean thinking, clean thoughts, clean relationships, because you’re not bringing any drama in or extra things that you’re making it mean.
Like Rachelle was talking about how, you know, with motherhood, depending on how the day goes, she makes it mean something about herself, and so she’s trying to completely change that thinking.
But I wanted to ask, Leanne, what are your thoughts on the fact that as human beings, we are meaning makers? We walk through life and we observe, and we’re using our brain, we think intelligently, to make things mean something. I just can’t see that that’s bad, but I do see that we can take it too far. So how can we handle that?
LP: Well, I think what he’s saying is that unhooking from our previous meaning that we never really chose—it was handed down to us, or handed to us from society at large—so it feels freeing. Like I make these meanings, I’m a meaning maker, but really we’re in this very limited view of the world. One thing I thought of that tied into other things I’ve heard is this idea of curiosity. When you start making assumptions and deciding a meaning and prescribing meaning to something without asking or finding out, you stop being curious, and then your world becomes a lot smaller. Because you’re not learning something new, you’re just deciding something, usually an old thought will come back. I think you make a good point, it’s just redirecting our mind. He talks about being warriors, and realizing that we’re going to have these thoughts come at us, and these desires to make assumptions, and we have to stand in the face of those and say, “I’m not going to do that anymore. I’m not going to give my power away to assumptions I’m making. I’m going to keep my power. I’m going to use my power to gain insight on what’s really happening.”
NP: Hmm. So what about when you’re just using very basic communication skills with someone, and if they’re not making eye contact, or they’re starting to close down, or fold their arms, we’re not supposed to make that mean that they want the conversation to be over?
LP: No. Because it could be that something you said was really triggering, and they want to talk about it more. It’s not about you at all. Which is exactly what he’s saying. Most of this isn’t about us. What I’ve done with my, again, speaking of husbands, one thing I’ve learned from my husband is I used to take—and I still need to work a lot on taking things personally. That’s probably the thing that’s the biggest hurdle for me, and the most freeing thought for me, that I can get to a point where I’m not taking anything personally. Because like what you said, in that example, you’re taking it personally. They’re shutting down, and you’re like, “I must’ve said something. I must’ve done something. They must not like me. I’m going to end this conversation.”
What I’ve practiced with my husband is this idea of the third space. There’s a space between me and him, but in my mind I just see this third space, and we can set whatever’s coming up in that space, and I don’t have to take it on and take ownership of it. So if I keep that in the third space, I can say, “Hey, it looks like you’re shutting down. You’re crossing your arms, you’re looking away, and I’m just wondering what’s going on.” See? Curiosity. I’m not making an assumption. I’m asking. “Hey, this is what I’m seeing with my eyes, and I’m curious what’s happening.” You can only do that if you’re not taking it personally, because if you’re taking it personally, it becomes about you. Now, he’s needing to comfort me about what it is, right? Like, “You’re hurting my feelings when you do that.” Then the conversation goes to a totally different place. It’s like that curiosity of, “Hey, what’s going on here?”
RY: Oh my goodness, I love that third space. I can just visualize that, and how useful that could be the next time I get in a disagreement with my husband. I love that.
LP: Right? Yes. It was one of those moments that clicked for me, like, “Wait, I don’t have to bring what he’s giving and put it into me.” I can just, like you said, that visual, that image of there’s a third space, and we can just both look at it there.
RY: Yeah. I love that.
LP: Again, it was that moment of clarity for me without, of the taste of what life could be like of, “Wait, I’m not taking this personally. I’m fine. You’re upset. What’s going on with you? I don’t need to own this.” And whew! The conversation was really productive, I wasn’t defensive, we were able to address what was coming up and unpack that, and there was none of the hurt feelings and the kind of stuff that normally happens when someone gets upset.
NP: Mm. I think it’s hard. I’m going to video record the next conversation I have with my husband and send it to you.
NP: So you can tell me what to say.
RY: Now, when someone’s doing that, like appearing to close off physically, that’s when you need to jump in and be a little bit confrontational.
NP: Oh, okay. Call attention to it, gently.
RY: Yeah, gently. Very gently. I’m a believer in being confrontational in a kind and gentle way.
NP: Yeah, totally.
RY: You know, like Leanne said, I’m seeing all these physical signs that you’re wanting to end the conversation. Am I right? You know, ask.
NP: Yeah, and I think if I’m really honest with myself, my husband is probably more in the right, because I think he’s calling me on the carpet using the third space, and he’s saying, but I always feel like he’s trying to derail the fight, but now I realize he’s just trying to call attention to the tone of my voice. And I’m like, “Don’t change the subject.”
RY: Boy, that sounds familiar to me. I’ve been in situations like that, like, “Whoa, whoa, whoa. You’re getting off track.”
NP: Yeah. “We’re talking about what you did wrong.”
RY: Yes! Exactly.
LP: Yes. So it’s good to keep that third space, and then it comes back to being impeccable with my words. If the way I’m saying something, my tone is causing a reaction in someone, I need to know that. Because that’s not being impeccable with my word. That’s the subtlety of being impeccable with our words. It’s easy to say, “I never say anything mean,” but what’s our intention behind the words we’re using? What is the energy behind the words we’re using?
RY: What is the sarcasm level behind them?
LP: Exactly. We could say the nicest thing.
NP: Yeah, that agreement is really and interesting one to me because there are so many ways you can take it, and he talked a lot about not being negative, right, and having everything that you say be out of love, and when I hear it, be impeccable with your word, I just think he’s probably saying, “No white lies.” I mean, that’s a small part of it, but there’s so much more to it than that.
LP: Yeah, and what he says, and I think what most people have to worry about is the words they’re saying to themselves, in your own head.
RY: Yeah. I didn’t really think of it that way. I mean, I think be impeccable with your word, and I think of be a person of integrity, and that’s something that I have long since strived to be. I never want my integrity called into question. I want it to be very abundantly clear to everyone who I cross paths with that I’m a person of integrity. Yes, being impeccable with your word means a lot more. It means being honest with yourself.
NP: I think it also means to mean what you say and say what you mean. So we have to be super careful that everything we say is what we’re really meaning, and then that we follow through later.
LP: True, but I also think it goes way beyond that, of actually you probably you shouldn’t say what you’re meaning from your first response. It’s going deeper. Like he said in a perfect example, and I’ve seen this and it was very validating to read. I think reviews people write online are so, we see the worst of humans when they leave reviews. It’s that black magic, it’s that poison, it’s people spewing on other people and ruining other people’s livelihoods, honestly. It’s this idea, like he says, he was talking about if someone had a professor, and they’re going to the professor’s class, and their friend’s like, “Oh my gosh, that professor is horrible, he’s the worst, you’re going to hate it, da-da-da-da,” and he’s talking about how even that, a truth that someone means, is poison.
That, there’s a true statement that might be true for me, that is putting poison into the world. And I think that’s where we start seeing this is deeper than just saying what we mean, just standing by our word. This is our word that we’ve been using is our word we’ve been using, you know, in church you hear it a lot, that’s what this one was kind of talking about, are we giving life through our word? Are we breathing life into people or are we taking it away?
So I think of that often, too. My word might be true, but it might not be life-giving. It might not be in alignment with the person I want to show up as, which is someone who’s encouraging others, supporting others, loving others. So even if I’m truthfully saying, “You’re a big jerk and I hate you.” That’s not being impeccable with my word because it’s the energy there that’s out of alignment with that loving energy.
NP: Yeah, so when we really stop and think, “Wait, why am I so hurt right now?”
LP: When we do that, and you go to the next step. 99.9% of the time we’re hurt is because we took it personally.
Like, “That professor’s out to get me! My husband was out to get me in that conversation!” And we’re going to read, Rachelle and I were talking about, for our next month, we’re going to read Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth, and I was just listening to, he’s doing an Oprah podcast, so I’m excited to kind of bring our podcast so people can read or listen to what he’s saying as well. He’s talking about the ego’s the only thing that cares about right or wrong, so if ever you’re caring about who’s right and who’s wrong, you know you’re in your ego.
NP: Oh. I care about that a lot.
LP: You get to, next month will be helpful. [laughing] Because that’s what this book’s saying, too. When you’re not taking things personally and nothing’s about you, then who cares if you’re right or wrong? It’s not about me. I don’t care.
RY: My dad always says in regards to marriage, “You can be right or you can be happy.”
LP: My mom says, “You can be legally right and legally dead.” You know, so it’s like, we have to really be checking ourselves, and that’s part of that old agreement that we made is this idea of rightness, and who’s right, who’s wrong, and we’ve got to figure it out. We really don’t. When it’s not personal. Just like when things happen in other people’s—this is embarrassing, and I only know this because of Instagram, but there’s a really big drama unfolding right now with Kylie Jenner and her friend. Kardashian news. And I don’t care because it’s not about me.
So I’m not wrapped up, whatever happens, I just read about it because I kept seeing all these memes and I couldn’t understand the joke, like what they were trying to joke about. So I looked up in the story, and it just is amazing to me because I’m like, “Wow, that’s really big in their lives right now,” but when you can see it from the outside, I can see how much that actually doesn’t matter. Not in a way that’s discrediting them, like, “Your life doesn’t matter.” It’s more like, “Wow, we can be in the midst of our biggest personal drama and in the big scheme of things, it’s okay. They’re going to be okay. We’re okay. Everything’s okay.”
So I think that’s a good example of how I want to be bringing my own self to my life with this agreement of, I want everything to feel like it’s happening to the Kardashians. It’s going to be okay. I don’t need to pick a side. I don’t know what happened. I don’t need to know what happened. It’s okay. Interesting. Curious. I wonder what that woman was thinking. Curious. But I don’t have to be, I’m not emotionally attached to it. I think we really get emotionally attached around this idea of who’s right.
NP: So, first of all, I love that comparison with someone else’s life, because you’re right. You don’t have a dog in the fight, so you’re able to be completely objective and impartial, and not only see that they both have, that there’s two sides to every story, but also they are blowing it out of proportion, basically.
RY: I’ve often heard the advice, “Is this going to matter a month from now? A year from now? Five years from now?” And that kind of helps me to keep things in perspective. There are some things that I get myself worked up about that aren’t going to matter an hour from now. So I try and remember that so that I can keep it all in check.
LP: Exactly, that perspective, that pulling outside of ourselves in that moment.
So that’s the thing, I think it’s easy to read books like this, and this is what I’ve been thinking of, like it’s easy to read books like this and take a piece and let it go. I’m like, this book has sold a lot of copies, and I don’t see a lot of people living like this.
NP: No, they’re not making Netflix series about putting this into effect in your life.
LP: Right? I’m not running into a lot of enlightened people who are just like, “Hey, I’m not—” It’s funny, I was looking up, it’s just so interesting how we’ll keep getting in the way of ourselves, and I was looking up the book to see is this a bestseller, like how many were sold? How many people are not actually internalizing this because it’s work? What he’s asking us to do is every day make an effort to change the way we are communicating with ourselves and others, and by doing our best, actually do our best of, “Hey, I’m going to catch myself before I say that thing that’s not impeccable.” I’m starting down a story that’s going to lead me to not being very kind, maybe I should stop telling the story.
Anyway, I just think it’s interesting, and if we really want to live this way, we have to think about how to make this an actual commitment. Then I was reading to see what, is this a bestseller, and there were some reviews, and the first review is a negative review. The second review is a negative review. I’m like, “Y’all, did you even read the book?”
NP: That’s so ironic.
LP: Like, oh my gosh. It just speaks to like, listen, when we’re ready, the right material will arrive and we’ll get it, and when we’re not ready, the material will arrive, and we won’t get it. This book might not be for everyone, but if this book speaks to you the way it speaks to me, I encourage everyone to actually make this a commitment. Try this out. Do something different. Like we were talking about, step outside of yourself and your life, and the way you’ve been living, to imagine the freedom like that example I use as I think about it, I’m like, “That is so freeing!” I want to just view life through this lens of, “I’m not taking it personally. Thing happen. It’s okay.”
That’s what we’re being offered here, as he says, an escape out of the hell that we’ve created. We’re being offered this opportunity, but unless we do the work to claim this opportunity, it doesn’t just happen.
LP: So, things to think about. If you haven’t read the book, this is one, you know, I hope you got something from the podcast to encourage you to read it, because the other thing I love about this book, and Rachelle, you said this, it is such a quick read. I listened to it on Audible, and I think it was like two and a half hours, and I listened to it a little quicker, and the author, or the reader reads it kind of slowly. So I feel like I was done with it in a little over an hour. It just was so packed with wisdom and insight, and again, it’s just an invitation to, “Hey, here’s some things you can do to completely shift the way you’re living in the world, but you need to then do those things.” I told Rachelle I read the book, finished the book last night. I did a little meditation at some point toward the end. I closed my eyes for that, and then I slept for like 10 or 11 hours.
That’s almost what represents this book to me. It’s one of those that it’s like, it almost hurts your head because it’s so much information. Like you’re saying, Natalie, it’s like there’s awarenesses, but it’s like wait, how does this all fit together? How do I bring this all together?
So it’s one of those books that really, you’ve got to kind of sit with.
NP: Well, it’s neat that you mentioned going right to sleep after reading it, because he compares our life here on this earth a lot to a dream. Do you guys remember how he says we’re all just living this dream. I love that philosophy because I think there’s a lot about this life that is kind of just a simulation and we’re all just kind of down here on this earth, walking around in this dreamlike state where everything is just meant to either be a distraction or a truth, and then we all think everything’s so important, and wealth is so important, and fame is so important, but really, none of that matters. Those things are all an illusion. So I really like that line of thought.
LP: Mm-hmm. I agree. It’s a good reminder. Like, “Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. Wait, wait, wait, wait. This isn’t that crazy.”
This isn’t that serious. We can step back, and we can do it how we want that feels really good.
RY: I think ultimately The Four Agreements, when you look at them in just their own simplistic statement, they do seem very simple. But then when you try to apply them accurately to your own life, that’s when it gets tough.
Taken by themselves, being impeccable with your word, don’t take things personally, don’t assume, and try your best, those are very, very easy concepts for people to grasp. But they’re not quite so easy to implement into your life with, you know, a good deal of accuracy.
So that’s where it takes work.
LP: Exactly, and like you said, it’s easy to say, “Oh, I’m doing the best I can,” but it’s in the context of all the other things. “Am I doing the best I can at being impeccable with my word, and at not taking things personally, and at not making assumptions? Can I do it in the context of that knowledge?”
So yes, so everyone, this is an invitation to go deeper into this. It’s an invitation to figure out how are you going to start applying this to your life, and really combine these pieces to create some big changes in the way that you are living your own life.
So thank you everyone for joining us for the podcast this month. Like we talked about, our next month’s book is Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth.
NP: Keep your eyes peeled for that.
LP: Awesome. Thank you everyone. Thank you ladies for sharing with me today.
NP: Yes, well, we’re so glad to be here. Thanks, Leanne.