Today we are talking about the fourth agreement from the book “The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz, “Always Do Your Best”.
The Four Agreements are:
- Be Impeccable With Your Word
- Don’t Take Anything Personally
- Don’t Make Assumptions
- Always Do Your Best
Agreements are beliefs we put faith in, and because we believe in them, they can either empower or limit our options in life. That’s why we can call those either empowering or limiting beliefs.
Usually, our reasons to put faith in those beliefs have nothing to do with reality, but more with survival. This subconscious search for survival completely throws away what is best for us in reality; we are going to talk about this a little further in this conversation. This is a huge topic on its own, so tell us in the comments below if you wish for us to dive deeper on it in another article
We give immense value to the acceptance of our peers. So much that anytime they show signs of rejection towards us, our subconscious mind takes action against these behaviors. This might sound vague for now, so let me explain a little better. Any behavior we have that our subconscious mind identifies as dangerous leads it to working against us on an unseen level. This is what we call self-sabotage.
All these engines turn around those hidden agreements we have, and today we talk about the one that makes sure we always do our best. This can be a game-changer in anyone’s life, and we wish to invite you to exercise mindfulness in this conversation on how we can make sure to keep this agreement strong in our lives.
Commit With Your Growth
Maintaining this agreement to Always Do Your Best probably requires defusing some hidden unhealthy agreements we have in life. Many times it’s just a fear of exposure and taking risks that holds us back. We might have a vision that interests us and at the same time never take the shot for it. Some might never consider their vision possible and live life wishing things were different, even live a different life or being born in a different family. Others decide to prepare. They prepare for so long and one day the opportunity to live their vision just seems too distant; suddenly they are not enough.
This is the fruit of a fixed mindset. In the last article, we mentioned the book Mindset by Carol Dweck which explains how this mindset is created by a fear of being rejected by the people around us which leads us into keeping our actions in safe bubbles we know how to handle. The same book talks about the growth mindset. This is when a person, instead of feeling threatened by the possibility of failure (shame and rejection), they feel excited about it and wish to explore and learn with the experience. A person with the same challenges, with a different mindset, can change everything.
Courage is not the absence of fear, but taking action despite its presence.
It’s important to value our growth in the areas that interests us. If we don’t have experience or fear not being able to learn how to handle something, it’s necessary to recognize this as just what it is: a fear of something. Then decide to move forward.
Learning is always possible. Progress is always possible. The key factor here is commitment, one of the four pillars in the Elevate Your Best coaching programs.
Sometimes the person fears disappointing themselves, and this keeps them from beginning something. The last person that should judge us is ourselves, because we if we don’t support ourselves, why should anyone else? Let go of the fear of failure and know that if the thing you wish to learn really interests you, you will be excited and have fun with it. Then each experience that you have with it will bring growth and learning.
Accept to Stand Out
We need to give you a warning: Just because we solve a challenge, it doesn’t mean that the rest of the way is clear. Deciding to do our best is deciding to continuously solve new challenges and explore new ways. We certainly don’t already know everything we might need to excel on something.
When you commit to exploring new paths, with the failures, you will gain experience and growth. Little by little, you will keep growing until you start to become good at something. Now your best is not just experimenting and enjoy doing it, it’s actually producing some nice and interesting results. That sure will make you stand out.
It would be great if what we just said happened exactly like that. We would stand out with nice results that people would see and maybe even recognize us for. Unfortunately, we tend to stand out by just the attempt, way back there when we probably only have failures and no progress to show for it. This leads us back again to the same trap of fear, thus making it difficult for our subconscious mind to dedicate work towards it if we have a fixed mindset.
Share your plans with your inner circle
This is why some people say: “don’t share your plans with others.” It’s the fear of rejection that might actually sabotage it. Now you know why. We have tons of energy in our body, but if the collective being that forms us does not believe something is good for our survival, we may be denied access to it.
One of the best things we can do is to accept our vision as our authentic self and request that the people around us support us in creating. This can be done through a conversation, sharing our vision, in a direct, excited, and welcoming manner. Of course, sometimes this just isn’t possible. Then it’s up to us to focus ourselves, be willing to find ourselves standing out by taking risks others may see as unnecessary. These people, may not understand why we would want to get out of the comfort zone created by our culturescape.
What Is In Our Way
Our culturescape creates a comfort zone around us. This is very important to our survival. If we recognize the fruit of a tree as something we’ve seen others eating or have eaten ourselves before, this means it is safe to eat it again. If we’ve never seen a fruit before and suddenly stumble upon a tree filled with it, our subconscious mind might raise suspicions about it. Is it safe to eat?
Animals have an incredible manifestation of this behavior. Take a look at this video of a huge and powerful gorilla charging on a fragile man and then backing off with suspicion after noticing he doesn’t seem afraid. After all, he is aware of his power, why would the man not tremble before it? Can it hurt him somehow? Better back off, as getting hurt can bring lots of trouble in nature.
Even more interesting than this is an elephant charging another man. It seems like the elephant is more persistent and decides to test and investigate the man. Is it really a threat or not? Is it just a bluff? He faces the man and starts to charge again and again, but finally backs off deciding that it is better not to deal with something unknown that might eventually be able to hurt him.
We have the same survival programming in our brains, somewhat scrambled by our consciousness, definitely unbalanced by the socialization process we’ve all been through.
So it is important for us to be mindful of what represents real risk and what is just a fear we might have of being rejected by our peers. And even when this fear is real, we can transcend ourselves above it, being conscious of our life vision and the processes we are putting into place to reach it. Knowing for sure that the future is within our reach.
Always do your best
When we always do our best, we give our all in the moment. In that, there is no second guessing if we did more, there would be a different outcome or resentment that we gave more than we had to give. This allows us to have so much more energy to focus on that which we are focusing on. Brings more clarity on how we show up. Like Jack Canfield writes about in The Success Principles, 100% is easy, 99% is hard
We humans can take the abilities we have to learn with the past and plan for the future to a whole new level as if they were superpowers we possess that can help us in our journey through life. Be more than satisfied with the way things are in life, especially if they are not connected with whom you wish to become. Learn how to use these superpowers and put on the work necessary to elevate your best.