The book " The Four Agreements: A practical guide to personal freedom - A Toltec wisdom book" by Don Miguel Ruiz carries quite a poignant messages in its pages, which are quite easy to grasp. Having traveled to Mexico and learned a tad about the indigenous histories of the Mexican peoples, this book calls to me and I recommend it to you.
Here is my understanding and view of the 4 agreements:
Be impeccable with your word.
We use language on a daily basis to communicate with other people and to communicate with ourselves. The moment that you THINK of something, you are using language to depict it within your mind. For us humans, language is a fabric of our being that cannot be removed without unraveling the whole concept of being human.
Being so, it is important to begin noticing how language is used so profoundly within our daily lives. Pay attention to how you use your language, and how people around you use language. It's almost like words can be magical spells. Find the secret to this magic.
Don't take anything personally.
Wow. This might take some time.....
How do I not take anything, or most things, personally? Don't I have a personal investment in the happenings around me?
Come to find out, everyone and everything around me happen to be reacting to life. All of us are unique individuals and we all see the world a certain way, through the filter of our own life experiences. In order not to "take anything personally", I have to recognize this truth. Just as a houseplant will react to the sunlight it's given, us humans will react to situations based on how we expect them to occur. For example, I go into the office this morning, wearing my nice striped tie, and Joe starts to make fun of it. Come to find out, Joe was made fun of in school for a striped suit he wore to prom one year. He was making fun of me based on his bad experience prior with striped clothing...
Don't make assumptions.
Assume..... when you assume, you make an ass of u and me.... as the saying goes. Assumptions are when we believe in a false reality and project our unspoken desires upon the world. As we learned before, the world is an illusion based on our filters of experiences. We are unique in this respect, even for identical twins. So when we "assume" something, we are believing that everyone else and all the world thinks EXACTLY as we do, which is definitely not the case. Being so, we are advised to not assume and let the wonders of the world unfold, communicating as best we can by being impeccable with our words and not taking any of the results or happenings around us personally.
Do your best.
Exactly as it says: Do Your Best. In all things. There is no telling when our worlds will end, or what will come of our actions. Doing our best we can rest assured that there is nothing more to be done. When we do our best, we are taking responsibility for our actions in the present moment and not leaving ourselves crippled for the future, meaning that when we do our best, we don't have to necessarily pick up the pieces at a later date. Also, we carry ourselves with integrity, something that in today's world, seems to be lacking.