I'm not going to set any resolutions for 2014. I don't want to set lofty goals, either. There are things throughout the year ahead that I look forward to, like moving when our lease is up at the end of August and my mom's visit in July, and will do some planning around, but for the most part, I am going to live for the moment, be present and create each new day.
I will continue to fine tune myself and to discover what brings me joy & fulfillment, so that I am following my dream and living my authentic life. I recently read The Four Agreements by don Miguel Ruiz and just this morning was reviewing my handwritten notes. This has given me some fresh perspective on the way I want to live, to be, how I will proceed into 2014 and beyond. I thought I would share some of the wisdom I gleaned from don Miguel with you on this last day of 2013 in the hope that it may speak to you, too.
Agreement 1: Be impeccable with your word.
The word is a force; it is the power you have to express and communicate, to think, and thereby to create the events in your life. (p30)
Imagine that every single time others gossip to you, they insert a computer virus into your mind, causing you to think a little less clearly every time. (p44)
Your opinion is nothing but your point of view. It is not necessarily true. Your opinion comes from your beliefs, your own ego, and your own dreams. (p47)
You can measure the impeccability of your word by your level of self-love. How much you love yourself and how you feel about yourself are directly proportionate to the quality and integrity of your word. When you are impeccable with your word, you feel good; you feel happy and at peace. (p48)
Agreement 2: Don't take anything personally.
Personal importance, or taking things personally, is the maximum expression of selfishness because we make the assumption that everything is about "me."
Nothing other people do is because of you. It is because of themselves. All people live in their own dreams, in their own mind; they are in a completely different world from the one we live in. When we take something personally, we make the assumption that they know what is in our world, and we try to impose our world on their world. (p54)
Even when a situation seems so personal, even if others insult you directly, it has nothing to do with you. What they say, what they do, and the opinions they give are according to the agreements they have in their own minds. (p55)
When you make it a strong habit not to take anything personally, you avoid many upsets in your life. Your anger, jealousy, and envy will disappear, and even your sadness will simple disappear if you don't take things personally. (p64)
Agreement 3: Don't make assumptions
These assumptions are made so fast and unconsciously most of the time because we have agreements to communicate this way. We have agreed that it is not safe to ask questions; we have agreed that if people love us, they should know what we want or how we feel. When we believe something, we assume we are right about it to the point that we will destroy relationships in order to defend our position. (p74)
Have the courage to ask questions until you are clear as you can be, and even then do not assume you know all there is to know about a given situation. (p78)
When you transform your whole dream, magic just happens in your life. What you need comes to you easily because spirit moves freely through you. This is the mastery of intent, the mastery of the spirit, the mastery of love, the mastery of gratitude, and the mastery of life. This is the path to personal freedom. (p80)
Agreement 4: Always do your best
Doing our best, you are going to live your life intensely. You are going to be productive, you are going to be good to yourself, because you will be giving yourself to your family, to your community, to everything. But it is the action that is going to make you feel intensely happy. When you always do your best, you take action. Doing your best is taking the action because you love it, not because you're expecting a reward. (p86)
Whatever life takes away from you, let it go. When you surrender and let go of the past, you allow yourself to be fully alive in the moment. Letting go of the past means you can enjoy the dream that is happening right now. (p91)
Just to be, to take a risk and enjoy your life, is all that matters. (p92)
You don't need the acceptance of others. You express your own divinity by being alive and by loving yourself and others.
By doing your best, the habits of misusing your word, taking things personally, and making assumptions will become weaker and less frequent with time. You don't need to judge yourself, feel guilty, or punish yourself if you cannot keep these agreements. If you're doing your best, you will feel good about yourself even if you still make assumptions, still take things personally and still are not impeccable with your word. (p93)
You have to stand up and be human. You have to honor the man or woman that you are. (p94)
We really need to use every bit of power we have to succeed in keeping these agreements.
So if you fall, do not judge. Do not give your Judge the satisfaction of turning you into a victim. No, be tough with yourself. Stand up and make the agreement again. (p97)
If you break an agreement, begin again tomorrow, and again the next day. It will be difficult at first, but each day will become easier and easier, until someday you will discover that you are ruling your life with these Four Agreements. And, you will be surprised at the way your life has been transformed.
Do not be concerned about the future, keep your attention on today, and stay in the present moment. (p98)
May we each follow our own path, with surprise intervals of crossing with one another so that we may gather in friendship & love. I am wishing you a new year full of life, risk, adventure, happiness, fulfillment!
~The Divine Mrs M