1. Be Impeccable With Your Word
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.
I like that this isn't just about honesty, but also about how to use the power of our words for good. Even though I use words very loosely, I love definitions and etymology of words and know they do have power.
2. Don't Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering.
Someone told me once that when a man says something to a woman, if it can be taken two ways and one of them is hurtful, he meant it the other way. I think that's generally true. Seinfeld also said that men are walking around, looking around, thinking about nothing and I think that's generally true of most people...well, at least they aren't generally thinking about me. I am the center of my own world and likewise every other individual is the center of their own, so it's not about me.
3. Don't Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.
I don't even have to say what people say about that.
4. Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.
It's true - when I don't do my best, I question myself and feel guilty. Okay, I'm off to do my best to start working on my thesis.
From: The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz