This week in the Elevate Your Best Podcast we talked about the first of The Four Agreements, from Don Miguel Ruiz: Be Impeccable With Your Word.
We all have agreements with ourselves, some of which are actually hidden from us in long past decisions. Those are things that we identify with for one reason or another and act accordingly.
What we say about ourselves, that we are shy or that we don’t know how to dance, those are the agreements we decided to keep. We can choose to make an inventory of these agreements and give them a good check to see which are actually serving us. Because some of them might be detrimental to us and our life vision.
If you look at them all, which agreements that you have today that you would like to maintain? You might be a big guy, with people saying that you are not very smart, but good for only for physical labor. Would you keep an agreement like that or would you like to change it?
How to change our agreements
The way to outgrow these agreements and change them is to get out of our comfort zone and explore. Than we start to notice our limitations and new perspectives to overcome them, arranging new agreements for ourselves.
These agreements can be changed through affirmations, which are short phrases that have the power to enchant our subconscious mind.
This is were being impeccable with your word starts to become important. All you say about yourself, all you commit to doing, is feeding your mind with proof of whom you are. When the time for truth comes, this proof will guide your actions.
For this, it’s very important to be honest with yourself. Accept yourself as you are. Being impeccable with your word allows us to have a moral compass that saves energy. There’s no waste with pretending, trying to guess, making assumptions, or inventing something to compensate for not being true with our word.
Have a relationship with the person in the mirror
Even so, many people fall short on this, for fear of being judge and rejected for speaking their truth. In these situations you need to remember the person in the mirror. The one that really matter to you, and get into a relationship with this person. Be accountable with yourself. This way, you will get much more comfortable in your own skin knowing you did the best you could do in any situation.
Why Should We Be Impeccable With Our Word?
Michael listed some of the benefits of being impeccable with your word during the podcast:
- build a relationship with yourself
- treat others how you wish to be treated and cultivate standards
- be recognized with respect and increase your value to the community
- protect and better use the amount of energy you have
Building this relationship with yourself is very important, as we are the person we talk to the most, and thus influence the most. We need to have conscious conversations with ourselves and be aware of the impact that these conversations have. Make sure that we are acting as our own ally, not enemy.
Being impeccable with our word allows us to cultivate more respect and value with ourselves, so we can trust ourselves, which is very important in life. This allows us to know our value, know that we are reliable. There’s an extreme value in knowing that about ourselves.
Remember we can use the digital tools that are available for us today to help with this. If we schedule a meeting for the next week, let’s add it to our calendar and send the person an email notification.
Know Your Impeccable Self
Our words are powerful. Not only what comes out of our mouths, but what we think about ourselves and others as well. All of this has the power to shape our reality. Words communicate ideas, and those ideas can influence and change us.
If we really intend on doing what we say and still keep failing at it, then we need to look at the motivations for why we committed to that in the first place. Was it out of people pleasing, obligation, or to manipulate? Are we over committing to impress someone, or unaware of how stretched we already are or of how difficult the commitment will really be to complete? Perhaps it is pressing us outside of our comfort zone, and our ego is stepping in as a paradigm to keep us safe. This is a time to be really honest about WHY we committed to this, and maybe a time to reframe, renegotiate, or reset that commitment. Recognizing this is key to understanding where we need to grow in order to actually become this person we visualize to be.
It’s also important to have the humility to express when we fall short on something, and commit on how to handle these situations differently in the future. Assuming responsibility for the things we are experiencing in life is key, like if you miss a commitment because you forget to put on an alarm on your phone.
Recognize there was a lack of preparation on your part and don’t look for excuses to feel better. Even if things seem not to be our fault, or even if they indeed are not, take ownership and decide what to do in relation to what happened. When you make things your responsibility, you can prepare to impact them.
Your words have a spell-like effect, don’t use them to comfort yourself to failure, use them to motivate you towards your objectives. Beware of the illusions of the mind and don’t fall for them. Be aware of the power of words with yourself, so you don’t unconsciously mislead yourself into agreements that don’t serve and situations that are not good for you. Remember that our subconscious mind knows who we are, and when we commit on doing something without actually owning it, our mind will know that we will not act on what we say we will, eroding our trust, and confidence in ourselves.
Know yourself and prepare yourself. Understand your weaknesses and the threats in your scenario, so you can mitigate damage that might come from them, or even turn these risks into opportunities.
Work with affirmations
Work with affirmations to remember your decisions and act on them. We do not rise to the occasion, we fall to the level of our practice.
Decide what you wish to experience, what are the values that you have, the behaviors you want to adopt and affirm yourself to them, or to change them. Build these paths in your mind so you can feel confident in them at the moment of need.
In moments of tension, our mind will limit the options that are available to us, as it will focus on what is familiar to us. Make sure the path your mind goes to is the path you choose for yourself.
How to improve on this?
If you wish to look for help in developing this discipline, you might be facing two types of challenges: problems dealing with past trauma, or problems creating a proper vision to lead you into the future.
If you have a problem with past traumas, a therapist is the best option to help you. The therapeutic process helps you find, face, and change meanings in your life that might be holding agreements that are detrimental to you and you might not see them as such. There are many possible routes here, psychotherapy, hypnotherapy, EMDR, Havening, EFT (Tapping), and the like. Each has their own benefits and work differently for different people. Seek out the one that works best for you.
If you are having problems with your future, feeling anxious or uncertain, a coach might be your option, as they focus on understanding your strengths and weaknesses, teach you good practices and increase your productivity, and help you to act on purpose at your best.
We can not expect to figure it all out alone. Everyone has strengths, weaknesses, and even some unfair advantages. We need to focus on our strengths and cover our weaknesses with the strengths of others. We can also provide this support to others to grow in our areas of strength.
Understand the trade we did long ago on the cognitive trade hypothesis. We learned how to communicate and gained consciousness about the past and the future. Consciousness about the past allows us to learn with others, not starting from scratch. Conscious for the future allows us to set our vision ahead and plan the experiences we’ll live. This along with communication is what makes us human. Human society is built on this.
These professionals can help you to spot where your actions are not aligned with your words for you to work on it. All this requires expanding our consciousness about who we really are.
Meditation is another tool that can work really well, as it gives a conscious pause for our mind to contemplate what we are doing, where we are, where we are going, what is the state of our body: physical, intellectual and emotional. We can also learn how to communicate with our mind and understand how our body currently is. Be aware of the conversation you have with yourself and how it is influencing you and your life.
Another useful thing we can do is to journal every day, even if it is just a brain dump of ideas. Use this practice as a tool to shape who you are and engrave ideas on your mind, and make tangle on paper what can feel so intangible in our minds.
Also be impeccable with your word in a sense of protecting it, keeping it as something precious. It is.