let’s get introspective shall we?
a few-ish years ago someone introduced me to something called the 4 Agreements. have you heard of them? basically it’s these 4 principles to live your life by and if able to, will increase your positivity, happiness, compassion for others, etc. basically, you’ll be set. i’ll get to what they are in a moment.
for a long time i lived by these, but as any practice goes, if you don’t use it you lose it. focusing on them fell to the wayside as i felt i was strong enough in these 4 mantras not to have post its of them on my wall anymore as daily reminders. down they went, literally and metaphorically. a few months ago, i added some “affirmations” to my iPhones reminder app so hourly i get encouraging little reminders on how to live my best life, be someone i’m proud to be, etc. i included the 4 agreements in these. as luck would have it, i’ve found that the second i’m acting out and totally disregarding the message, THERE IT COMES popping up on my screen at that exact moment.
i’ve lost them. i don’t align with the 4 agreements anymore. i have to get back to them, if for no other reason than the person i felt i was becoming when adhering to them is someone i loved, someone i don’t want to be a stranger to me. i want to know that ashli. so as follows, you will see the 4 agreements, how i have failed and how i hope to adapt and be better. join me if you like.
i personally feel one of my best skill sets lies in my ability to communicate. so as i was texting someone who upset me and sending such a long texting battle that you had to scroll to read it all, this reminder popped up on my phone. here i was, feeling hurt, and thus feeling vulnerable, and my reaction was to drag them through the mud out of…what…vengeance? if someone hurts you badly enough that you feel you have to walk away from them, i’ve found i need to do one of two things. if i still have respect for them, i need to space for long enough until i am calm and can have explain reasonably what i am feeling. if i do not have respect for them, then yes, time for much more distance, either to let time heal or to make space for others who you feel are necessary in life.
lesson to learn and remember: think before speaking. is this in line with how i want to react? how i would want to be treated? am i acting appropriately? am i being rational?
the mindset here is tough for me, as i tend to err on the side of defensiveness, however, is also a nice release of stress for me. “this isnt about you”, i remind myself. someone freaked out on you at work and you can’t understand what you did wrong? maybe that had a rough morning and their baby hasnt been sleeping and theyre very tired. you werent invited to that brunch you saw on instagram? maybe the two people that went havent seen each other in some time and want to catch up intimately together. that guy told you he doesnt see a future together? maybe your relationship reminds him of something he’s had before that ended badly..orrr he wants someone a little different and doesnt want to change you. none of that is a representation of how you are living, what you are doing. that power to feel hurt is inside of you, not in the hands of another.
lesson to learn and remember: everyones reactions mirror their intrinsic feelings. someones choices and actions show where they are in life with themselves. the less power you give others, the stronger you stand on your own.
similar to the previous point, don’t trick yourself into knowing a situation unless you ask. i put this to work the other day when i didnt hear back from someone i have been seeing-ish-notreally-kindof, i wondered what was going on. i called, with no response. i later found out that he had texted me via a screenshot he sent me and i never received it. thank goodness i did not make an assumption, take it personally and did well with my words because i could’ve shown some crazy colors by acting totally out of context. not only would that be embarrassing, but it also would set me up for a pattern i don’t want repeating.
lesson to learn and remember: if something seems a certain way at face value, sure it’s possible the way you see it is accurate and valid. it’s also possible that there are outlying factors affecting said situation and it’s up to you to either ask the kind questions for more information or to let the situation unfold and show itself to you naturally.
this one is a simple one, thankfully enough. just do your best. you when you are sick is not you when you are well. just do your best. you after months of living in a negative space whether thats professionally, physically, emotionally, etc. will do damage to you. just do your best. wake up, show up, give your hardest to be compassionate, to live up to your standards, to be good. just do your best.
lesson to learn and remember: you don’t always get it right. sometimes you do make assumptions…and you’re wrong. you take things personally and it has nothing to do with you. you speak inappropriately and rudely and you know better ways to react. it happens. the less you judge yourself the more seamlessly your days can be, the less you will hold and the easier to master the above points.
nobody is perfect yall, i’m hardly anywhere close. there are many mantras, beliefs, thoughts, etc. that can help hone in on being your best self and i’m sure there are others out there that are just as wonderful as these 4. i like these and their simple focus. i’m hoping over time to be able to be more proud of my ability to align with them without extreme mental focus. but for now, i’m just doing my best.
have a good weekend loves xo