Episode 18

18. The Four Agreements, Part 1


In this podcast I share with you one strategy that has saved me so much time, energy, and needless drama this week! It’s the first in a four part episode series based on Don Miguel Ruiz’s book, “The Four Agreements.”

What you will discover

  • The double edged sword we all possess that can heal or hurt
  • How the poison of gossip actually harms the person handing it out
  • Why courage is required to achieve heaven on earth

Show Notes

From the Episode

Hi, everyone. I am happy to be here with you today and as always, thanks for inviting me into your world. So this week as always, the topic is inspired by things going on in my own life and the lives of the people who I work with, who are in my personal world, and everything was pointing in the direction of, I have got to talk about this idea of finding heaven on earth. And where did, how did I come up with this topic this week? Well, I am part of a little book club and we, we read some really cool books and the most recent one that we’re reading is actually one that I read here so ago. Thanks to my friend up in Toronto, Jane. Thank you, Jane. She always sends me great information and ideas and books, and this book is called and you’ve probably heard of it.

It’s called the four agreements by Don Miguel. Ruiz says, I love Don Miguel Ruiz says, and I love his book, the four agreements. Why do I love it? Because it’s simple. And when you read it, you literally, you look at his words and his messages that are so simplistic and like, Oh my gosh, why have I been making life so hard? Oh, this is why I have all this drama. This is why I have all this chaos in my life. So if you are one of those people that, like, I always say feels too much, you know, maybe you’re all highly sensitive or empathic, or you’re just, you know, you take on other people’s energy and you just sometimes get overwhelmed and drained. This book is for you. And even if, even if what I just said, doesn’t resonate with you. This book is for you because I literally just read the other day, Tom Brady it’s this book is his mantra.

And whether you like Tom Brady or not is irrelevant. He used, he said he reads this book once a year. It’s his mantra. And, uh, it’s kind of like his mantra for living. And I would agree with that. I think that, so I read this years ago and it resonated with me and then my book club picked it up again and I thought, well, I’ve already read that book. And as I’m reading it, Oh my gosh, I have so many new things that I’m pulling out of it. And so what I thought I do, I’d like to do a four-part series, um, and just dive into each of the individual agreements that, that Don Miguel Ruiz says talks about that I feel are, are literally life-changing and they’re life changing in a super simple way. This is just a little book. It’s, doesn’t take you, you know, months or weeks to read.

It’s not super deep, like some of Eckhart Tully’s books where it’s, uh, I don’t know about you, but when I read his books and I love, I call him my EBT, Eckhart. Totally. I love him. When I read his books, I literally sometimes have to read one sentence or paragraph several times and then just put it down and like let it absorb because it’s really, it’s heavy in a really good way. Don Miguel Ruiz says, book is lightened lovely in an equally profound way. So today we’re going to dive into the first agreement and this first agreement he claims, if you practice this, this one agreement that you can find heaven on earth, that it can change your life. So what is, what does he mean about agreements? Well, as I read this book, I’m reminded of, he uses the word agreements in similar ways that I use the words like commitments or stories.

So when we’re younger, we create stories about who we are and we make meaning about who we are by maybe what another person says to us, or maybe it’s a teacher or a parent, but it, it gets imprinted on us. Like, no, I’m not good at math because you know, maybe your mom always said she was never good at math. So you just figured I’m not good at math. That’s a personal story. My mom always said that. And so I just kind of figured, well, I’m not good at math either. I don’t know. Maybe I am good at math, but I had that story in my head, sorry, mom. Um, but you know, stories, you know, we create these stories in our heads about who we are and maybe they served us well when we were younger. And yet when we hold onto these outdated stories of who we are, they can hold us back.

They can keep us stuck as we, as we move on in our lives. And, and the way I read his book is the agreements are something similar. We make these agreements with ourselves, these contracts, these negotiations, and he flips it and says, Hey, let’s take all of these agreements, these stories that we had in our heads. And, and let’s replace them with these four agreements. And I love the beauty of that. And again, like I said, I know I’m repeating myself, but just the simplicity of it. So, so the first agreement is, are you ready? It’s be impeccable with your word, be impeccable with your word. So that’s what we’re diving into today. Our word is, I mean, that has so many meanings. When you think of like your word, it’s kind of like integrity. It’s, you know, are you going to say what you’re going to say?

And you know, are you going to do what you say? You’re going to do it. It goes along the lines of the actual words that come out of your mouth, the language that you use, um, how you talk to yourself, how you talk to other people. So we’ll dive into that in a bit, but I want to read this part, this one section to you that really I highlighted when I was reading it. Um, the word is the most tool you have as a human. It is the tool of magic, but like a sword with two edges, your word can create the most beautiful dream or your word can destroy everything around you. One edge is the misuse of the word, which creates a living hell. The other edge is the impeccability of the word, which only creates beauty, love and heaven on earth. Excuse me, depending upon how it is used, the word can set you free, or it can enslave you even more than, you know, all the magic you possessed is based on your word.

Your word is pure magic. And then he goes on to talk about how the misuse of your word is really the root of what creates this emotional suffering. And it got me thinking about that about, you know, we talk so often about the thoughts in our heads and how our thoughts can really create our reality. Because when we have a thought, you have an emotional reaction, which leads to a choice which leads to your reality. So yes, our reactions equal our realities and even deeper, if you back it up, our thoughts create our realities here. We’re talking about our words. And I guess you could combine words with the words in your head, meaning your thoughts, but have you ever thought about this at a really deep level on the words that come out of your mouth, they have this ripple effect to everyone and everything in the world when you really think about it, and how often do we just go on a tangent or, you know, I like to call it verbally vomit all over someone and project our own hurt and our own feelings onto someone else.

And he goes on to talk about how this is almost like, you know, we can spread really good magic, beautiful magic in the form of beauty love connection, or we can spread this poison. And it’s our choice on how we want to use our word. So I have a question for you. What kind of magic do you spread in your mind when you wake up in the morning? Are you impeccable with your word? Are you exquisite with the words that you choose to tell yourself? A friend of mine, a family friend of mine, he at a, at a young age, lost his wife and was left as a single father to, I believe he has three sons that are now grown and off living in own lives. And obviously it was a, um, it was a lot to deal with and people always comment on what a great attitude he had and how happy he was.

And, and I asked him one time, I said, you know, how did you get through it? And how did you keep moving on? And he said, I woke up every morning and I looked at myself in the mirror and I said to myself, Jerry, you’re going to choose to be happy today. And so he just created this energy of happiness. It was a choice. And so I’m guessing that when he woke up the words in his head or the words that he said out loud in the mirror, weren’t Oh, um, you know, life is so hard. This is so terrible. And I’m sure he did go through that. And he also chose to say, you know what, though, I’m going to choose to bring my best self today. I’m going to choose to live today and, and, and appreciate life for, for what it’s bringing me.

And I think that’s pretty powerful because we have so many words floating through our heads every day about ourselves, about other people and some of them, like you could almost imagine, you know, the words swirling in your brain, some of them slide down, imagine a slide or right down to your mouth and they come out. And which ones do you choose or do, I’m sorry. Do you allow to come out? And I think that is what Don Miguel Ruiz is talking about. He’s talking about, we have the power to let magic out of our mouth to let love out of our mouths, or we have the power to let poison out of our mouths. And that poison is, can be directed at ourselves. It can be directed to other people as well.

And it’s interesting. Don’t you think about it? Like think of all the times that you’ve been, or maybe you don’t have a lot of times, hopefully you don’t, but if you do, I mean, think about the times that you just were so upset and so angry and you just let someone have it. And you said all the things that you wanted to say, how did, how did you feel afterwards? Maybe you felt validated in the moment, but then later, did you kind of have a little bit of a pit in the stomach, a little bit of a regret. I love what he says further on in the book being impeccable with your word is the correct use of your energy. I’m going to repeat that because I read it at least three times being impeccable with your word is the correct use of your energy.

It means to use your energy in the direction of truth and love for yourself. If you make an agreement with yourself to be impeccable with your word, just with that intention, the truth will manifest through you and clean all the emotional poison that exists within you. I love that because it’s being intentional, even though maybe we don’t want to, because it’s hard. It takes courage to be impeccable with your word. But when we have the courage, when we use the intention, when we use the discipline to use our words in a way that is truthful and loving, because let’s face it, we can speak our truth in a loving way. We can deliver what we need to deliver in terms of communication in a respectful way, rather than a spiteful way.


You know, when you think about it, think about the words. Okay. So we’re talking about the words that we say to ourself, the language that we use towards ourself, the language that we use towards other people, how we talk about other people now, like, let’s think about this for a second. He goes on further in the book to talk about gossip and you know, um, how gossip is, is truly the poison that, that kills relationships, that kills joy. Um, he writes, consider how many times you have gossiped about the person you love, the most gain, the support of others for your point of view. How many times have you hooked other people’s attention and spread poison about your loved one in order to make your opinion, right? 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 dream.

So this reminds me a colleague of mine. I had a conversation with recently, and she was talking about what she calls the ladder of inference, the ladder of inference. And she’s done different workshops in the corporate realm about when there’s conflict at work, you have to understand that everyone sitting around the table is a human being who has bringing their quote unquote stuff. So I said to her, so the ladder of inference, meaning, and she talks about the ladder, meaning, you know, when you’re younger, there’s this rung on the ladder, Oh, you dealt with this stuff and then you get older and there’s more rungs on the ladder. There’s more steps on the ladder. And you just start to accumulate all this stuff then that, then that you, that bring to your personal and in working and professional relationships. And I said to her, so the ladder of inference is really just a fancy term for you’re bringing your stuff, your issues.

And she’s like, yeah. And so when we, when we gossip about other people, a lot of times we want our opinion to Trump. All, we want our opinion to win. And I love what he says, and I’m going to read it again. 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 dream. I love that. And this book couldn’t have come at a more perfect time because there’s some things going on, um, in my world, um, that I have courage and discipline has been required of me recently with holding back and wanting other people to know my truth, because, um, something happened recently where some words, um, a conversation that I had with a few people, my words were not taken in the way that I meant them to be.

And they were kind of misconstrued and repeated to someone else. And then it got back to me and I immediately was like, I want to defend my, like I had a visceral reaction. I had an emotional reaction. And because I’ve been, thank God I’ve been reading this book because in that moment, I was like, Whoa. I mean, it was like this emotional suffering just washed through me and how dare they repeat that? That’s not what I meant. And then I remembered this book that I’m reading. And I thought, Whoa, because I was so triggered, there’s something in me, right. That I have to look at this. And it got back to this whole impeccability of your word. And next, the next podcast episode, I’ll be talking about the second agreement, which is, don’t take anything personally. And that’s the, that’s the agreement that I really grabbed onto during this specific situation.

But that’s for another episode, we’re not going to jump ahead. Um, so, so being impeccable with your word, and I immediately wanted to call this person and explain my point of, you know, my side of the story. Um, I actually typed out a text message and then erased it because I was like, Whoa, what would my buddy, Don Miguel Ruiz say, he’d say, Meg, Meg, are you being impeccable with your word? You know, does it really matter what other people are saying? Because of, you know, your truth, that’s all that matters. And again, we’re kind of, you know, going into we’re running into the second agreement, but, but I had to reel it in because I realized in that moment that my words, if I called the person, or if I wrote the text that I didn’t really need to do that because it would just be perpetuating the story that was going around.

And, and, you know, as long as I knew my truth, I could step back. And it felt very empowering in that moment. That was a turning point for me, because I think so often we want to defend our point of view. We want to defend our opinion. And when we realize that’s really just our ego creeping in, and is it really worth your time or energy? The time that I got immersed in that, that good half hour to an hour was time that I could have spent directing my energy to other things. And that’s why he talks about, you know, being impeccable with your word is really about the correct use of your energy. How are you directing your energy? I often like to say to clients, when they get caught in the drama, like I was getting caught in, you’re bigger than this. You have bigger things to do than allow yourself to get immersed in the rumination and the drama and the obsession about who said this, or who said what? It doesn’t matter because you have better, bigger things and better things to spend your time on. And so when you think about, and so Don Miguel, he, he talks about this is the most difficult agreement and the reason he has it as the first agreement, the first of the four agreements in the book is because it’s the most important. And in his words, he says something to the effect of, if you can master this one agreement, you will experience heaven on earth

And every subsequent agreement, the three that follow are contingent upon this one agreement, be impeccable with your word, how you speak to yourself, how you speak to other people, the language that you use, I’m not going to lie. I don’t swear a lot, but for some reason, over the past few months I’ve been swearing and you know what, for some people, it works. It feels, I have friends that are like, Oh man, I feel so good after I swear. And that’s totally cool. But for some reason, for me, when I swear, I just feel kind of like, Ugh, my energy drops. I feel like I kinda let myself down, like, did I really need to put that out into the world? And so the actual words that we use, our energy and what we put out to the world with our language, it affects everything.

And when you think about it, let’s get back to this whole idea of gossip. So when we’re gossiping about someone, you know, other people are simply mirrors to ourselves and he goes into this in a really cool analogy about, I won’t even get into it. It’s a little woo-hoo and you know, I love wool and I’m not going to explain it properly. So you’ll have to get the book if you want to dive it more into it. But essentially, you know, we are all energetic beings. We are, we are, we are light filled, right. And we reflect one another. So what I see in you that drives me crazy is really in myself. And I haven’t healed that, you know, I haven’t, I have yet to heal that what I love in you and what I admire in you is also within, and maybe wants to be brought to life.

So that’s pretty cool as well. But this idea of being impeccable with your word, you know, another thing to say about the whole gossip staff in quote unquote, you know, the telephone game or talking behind other people’s backs, it’s so hard not to do. And that’s why if you can curb it, it is life changing. And as he says, you can create heaven on earth because you start to just feel purified from all the drama in life. And don’t forget that when you say something to another person, you have no control over how it is repeated. It just keeps going down the line. And so your words that you use, imagine it this way, any word that comes out of your mouth can be recycled and recycled and recycled and on and on and on. And that’s what I mean when I say the words that we use have this ripple effect to other people.

And it’s kind of a cool experiment. I’ve been experimenting with it this week. Oh, there goes my birdie girl, hold on. Okay. I’m back. Birdie likes to sit with me when I record these. And yeah, she likes to bark sometimes too. So, so as I was saying, the words that we put out really have the ability to heal or to hurt. And it’s up to us. Do we want to bring light to the world or do we want to bring, as he says, poisoned to the world, I like what he says here to how much you love yourself and how you feel about yourself are directly proportionate to the quality and tech and integrity of your word. I’m going to read that again, how much you love yourself and how you feel about yourself are directly proportionate to the quality and integrity of your word.

And that’s what I was just talking about. It’s, you know, how we feel about ourselves really is reflected in what we put out to the world. So if you feel like you’re gossiping a lot, if you feel like you’re just putting out negativity, don’t use that as an excuse to beat yourself up, use it as a moment go, Oh, wow. How can I love myself a little bit more? I’m kind of hurting right now. And that’s a really kind of an interesting experiment to use. He says, tell yourself how wonderful you are, how great you are, tell yourself how much you love yourself. Use the word to break all those teeny tiny agreements that make you suffer. And so he talks again about these agreements that we make about ourselves. When we’re young, that kind of stick in our head like, Oh, I’m not good at this.

Or I’m not lovable, or I’m not worthy, or I’ll never achieve XYZ, or I’ll never be one of the cool kids. I’ll always struggle that staff, he saying that the word they can, they can break all those agreements that, that are causing any kind of emotional suffering that you have. And a lot of times the emotional suffering is it shows up in the relationships that we have with other people, friends, colleagues, loved ones, everything. And so again, the starting point is this idea of self love. And I mean, imagine what you can create when you start looking at what you’re putting out in terms of your words, the most powerful, um, you know, two words are I am, you know, I am, what are you? I am happy. I am well, or I am off. I am tired. I am exhausted. You know, the more we say that the more our internal subconscious mind is like, okay, let’s continue being tired.

Let’s continue being off. So, you know, just, I invite you to just for the next week. And actually I’m doing this for the month. My book club meets once a month and we’re playing with this idea and we’re going to look at situations that were really great situations and, and we’re looking at situations. So we’re kind of keeping a mental diary or journal to share with one another about, Hey, this is some high points. This is what went really well for me this month. And you know what, it’s directly proportionate to the words that I use. Maybe it was my, the words I spoke to myself or the words I spoke to others, or even more importantly, the words I chose not to say to myself or to other people about other people. And then we’re going to look at the low points. Well, this is a day that I really kind of had some struggles.

Well, how did that, how did that align with the words that you said? When I talk about the situation I had recently, with my words, getting misconstrued, I learned a valuable lesson, be very cognizant and aware of the words that come out of your mouth, because you have no idea how other people are going to take them again. That’s none of your business. People take it the way they take it. However, always, you know, I guess the old adage of think before you speak, check your intention behind what you are about to say and be aware that words hold power and they can elevate a situation, or they can really kind of, um, like he says, you know, put poison out to the world. So let’s all try that this week together, let’s be impeccable with our word. Let’s be courageous to hold back. When we know we’re saying something from our ego or this desire to be right.

And I bet like that would cut. If we cut out all the words that were driven by our ego or the desire to be right, or people to, you know, agree with us. I bet that would cut. Um, our output of words probably by 75%. Think about it and think about how your nervous system would calm down. Think about how life would flow. Uh, probably a little bit more, uh, easier, more beautifully. So join me with that. If you’d like, I’d love to hear how it works for you. And I’m excited for next week’s podcast because it’s all around and I’ll give you a little teaser. Wayne Dyer always said other people’s opinions are none of your business. Other people’s opinions are none of your business. And that’s a teaser for the second agreement that we’re going to talk about next week, which is don’t take anything personally. So yeah, if you’d like to check out this book again, it’s called the four agreements. I’ll leave it in the episode notes. Um, some more information on that, and I wish you a lovely day and be courageous and show up to the world in a way that you look at yourself in the mirror and you tell yourself you’re beautiful. I love you. And today’s going to be a good day. All right, I’ll talk with you soon. Bye-bye.

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Meg Daly


Hi I’m Meg. I love helping empathic people who sometimes “feel too much” calm their head, hearts, and homes through my courses and books. Ultimately we all want to feel good in our bodies, relationships, and with the work we do in this world. When we remove the roadblocks that exist on the road to feeling the way we want to feel life tend to flow easier. 

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