The Four Agreements Paperback version: Read Chapter 4 + Chapter 5, Pages 63-91
The Four Agreements Online PDF/e-versions: Read sections marked The Third Agreement + Chapter 5: The Fourth Agreement
Not making assumptions can be very challenging for us because “we have the need…to justify everything, to explain and understand everything (Ruiz 67). Ruiz believes if we practice clearer communication, we won’t assume so much and we will have healthier relationships. Think about a relationship issue you have encountered (past or present). It could have been something between you and a partner, family member, or friend. What do you think you were assuming about the situation and the other person? How could it (possibly) be resolved through better communication?
In our society, we tend to focus on the outcome, as opposed to the process. We think, consciously and unconsciously, about what we are going to get out of something (a job, a situation, a person) and as a result, we are constantly worrying about and preparing for the future. Ruiz tells us that personal rituals give us a chance to focus simply on the here and now. He gives the example of a taking a shower as a ritual where he can practice gratitude for his body. What rituals do you have? If you don’t have any right now, imagine what you might like to do as a ritual. How would practicing your rituals be different than just doing something for the payoff?