4 rules to really be what you are reviewed by a coach
In our society, we have learned how to behave, what to believe, what is good and what is bad, right or wrong. We have self-limiting beliefs that rob us joy and create pain. The 4 rules of Don Miguel Ruiz offer us a code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, happiness and love.
The Four Agreements invites you to challenge your fear-based and limiting beliefs.
To adopt the Four Agreements is to take up a war against the critical voice in your head and agreements in the mind that create unhappiness.
Be Impeccable with Your Word
Words are powerful. To give you an example of the possible impact of our words, imagine an intelligent woman with a big heart, who deeply loves her daughter. One day, she comes back home with a big headache after a day at work particularly hard.
She simply wants to relax. But her daughter sings and jumps around, totally ignoring the needs of her mother. After a while, her mother screams : “Stop singing please! You have an horrible voice!”.
The truth is that the mother at that time could not stand anymore the noise and not that her daughter doesn’t know how to sing. The child, meanwhile, believes what her mother said and makes a deal with herself: I will not sing anymore because I have a horrible voice.
Words are powerful. All the magic you possess is based on your word. Depending upon how it is used, the word can set you free, or it can enslave you as well as others even more than you know.
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 words in the direction of truth and love.
The OFNR process is the main tool of non-violent communication developped by Marshall Rosenberg. Used in individual coaching, it helps client who have relationship difficulties learn an assertive way to communicate. Once the client has perfected this technique, OFNR becomes the main tool in day-to-day communication and conflict management.
ONFR are initials for the 4 levels of logic that must be unraveled to have high quality communication :
the facts (what we are seeing, hearing, or touching) as distinct from our evaluation of meaning and significance. It is said that “When we combine observation with evaluation others are apt to hear criticism and resist what we are saying.”
emotions or sensations, free of thought and story.
universal human needs, as distinct from particular strategies for meeting needs.
request for a specific action, free of demand. Requests are distinguished from demands in that one is open to hearing a response of “no” without this triggering an attempt to force the matter. It is recommended that requests use clear, positive, concrete action language.
Don’t Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own beliefs. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.
If someone tells you : “You’re too big.” Do not take it personnally. The truth is that the person is struggling with his own emotions, opinions and beliefs.
No matter what the person does, thinks or says, it’s always about him.
Not taking things personally will give you a lot of freedom. You will no longer need to rely on what others think, say or do. You just need to be confident on you and to make responsible choices.
The method is to listen with empathy how the others feels without hearing blame or criticism still using the OFNR process.
I hear what the others observe (see, hear, remember, imagine) without hearing their evaluations.
I listen to how they feel about what they observe.
I listen to what they need or what are their key values.
I listen to the concrete actions that they would like to see.
So you can really be in an empathic listening. Empathy can be defined as the presence giving to what we live and to what the others live.
You can connect to the feelings and needs of your interlocutor following 4 steps:
Do nothing, simply be there, be confident in the fact that all beings have the capacity to find their own solution ;
Pay attention to the feelings and needs of others ;
Reflect the feelings and needs of others ;
Feel a release of tension or a physical relaxation of the other, often expressed by a smile.
Don’t make assumptions
We often misunderstand other people. We tend to make assumptions about everything and to take them for real. We believe we know what others are thinking and feeling. We believe we know their point of view. We forget that our beliefs are just our point of view based on our belief system and personal experiences and have nothing to do with what others think and feel. That everybody judges us, abuses us, victimizes us, and blames us the way we do ourselves. As a result we reject ourselves before others have the chance to reject us. When we think this way, it becomes difficult to be ourselves in the world. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness, and drama.
How to do it ?
Find the courage to ask questions. If you don’t understand something, it is better for you to ask and be clear, instead of making an assumption. Find the courage to express what you really want. Everybody has the right to tell you no or yes, but you always have the right to ask. Likewise, everybody has the right to ask you, and you have the right to say yes or no.
With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.
With clear communication, all your relationships will change, and not just with your partner. You do not need to make assumptions because everything will be clear. You know what you want and what the others want.
Always do your best
Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.
If you try too hard to do more than your best, you will spend more energy than is needed and in the end your best will not be enough. When you overdo, you deplete your body and go against yourself and it will take you longer to accomplish your goal. But if you do less than your best, you subject yourself to frustrations, self-judgment, guilt, and regrets.
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick.
Here, the question is about how we control the course of our lives. We are usually too scared to let it go because for us it is a sign of weakness. Most people believe that control is essential, that it would be dangerous to let the universe take care about our lives instead of recognizing that everything goes in the right direction in order to feel comforted and strengthened.
How to let go? How to stop fighting ? It’s simple, as in the game of tug of war, let go. We liberate ourself from our patterns that drives us to control the course of things and we accept what the universe brings us.
However, there is a difference between letting go and giving up. Quit is to raise their arms to heaven and to say : “There is no hope, it’s over for me.” Letting go is to do what is more adapted to the situation and if it doesn’t work, accept to move back.
During a session of individual coaching, I like to ask to my clients : “if you continue not to let go, what would you do ?” Thus, the client becomes aware of his behavior and can decide what is most suitable for him.
True freedom is to be what we really are. The 4 agreements help us to reach it. It is a challenge of every single day of our life.
More info and Sources:
Official Don Miguel Ruiz’s website:
Marshall Rosenberg and Nonviolent Communication: