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The James Altucher Show: The Fifth Agreement!

I confess, I heard of the book, but it was the first time I learned about the book and the author, don Jose Ruiz. And I am glad and grateful I was exposed to both through the podcast.

The episode is loaded with wisdom and life lessons.
Here are 10 insights I learned from this episode.

Great episode @JamesAltucher @jay_yow07

    1. Be impeccable with your words

    Voltaire's quote comes to mind.
    "Everything you say should be true, but not everything true should be said." — Voltaire

    This is such a powerful concept. Using words impeccably is not only limited to being honest. It is the narratives we create about ourselves and the world. When we use the words impeccably, we create positive energy. We paint a hopeful picture of our future selves and about a better world.
    Using words impeccably means improving our lives and the lives of the world around us.

    2. Don't take it personally

    "Don't take it personally" is wise advice I received early in my career.
    People unknowingly project their insecurities and fears on others in different forms. They are screaming for help.
    The problem is that it is not easy not to take things personally. And when we do, we level up in terms of awareness. Deciding or choosing not to take things personally means we are self-aware and know that by taking things personally, we are exposing our emotional vulnerability, fears, and insecurities by taking it personally.
    A great level of awareness is when we take it personally, but also help the other person feel comfortable and secure.

    3. Master transformation

    I simply love this one. Mastering transformation means we are
    Adapting to this fast-paced and connected world means continuous learning and continuous change.

    I was not sure I understood the mention of the hummingbird. I love the bird. I may need to listen to the podcast again or ask don Jose Ruiz.

    4. Don't make assumptions

    Whether we know it or not, we always make assumptions.
    Assumptions make it easier to live.
    All we know of history is what has been transmitted through
    We are unaware that we make assumptions, and we don't seek to understand those assumptions and validate them. But when we do, we level up in awareness.
    Assuming is easier. It gives us a false sense of certainty. Not assuming means we are uncertain. It means we need to do the hard work and ask the right questions. And sometimes, it means not doing or thinking anything, which is hard in itself.

    5. Listen, like an artist? but be skeptical

    I would assume that since art is subjective, when artists listen to each other, they don't judge; they simply listen.
    Being skeptical is important. It means we are seeking the truth, we do not doubt the integrity of the source or the person, but we recognize their biases and limitations as human beings.
    This is also hard to do. Truly listening without projecting ourselves, egos, fears, etc., is a sign of a higher level of awareness.

    6. Many levels of awareness

    I always thought that there are many levels of awareness. The more we learn about ourselves, the more we go up the awareness ladder.
    The more we contain our anger and emotion, the more we are aware of our limitations and biases the higher level of awareness we reach.
    I think being impeccable with words reflects the level of awareness a person is.

    7. Integrity is the art of intent

    I am still pondering this one. When we are clear about our intent, doing the right thing becomes easier. I may need to write an idea list about this. For example, would you fire someone who is very talented and delivering but abuses or disrespect their teammates? The answer should be "Yes." But if the intent is to make money and deliver, then the answer may be different.

    8. Always do you best

    There is something noble about doing our best in any endeavor. Doing our best shows is linked to the idea of mastering transformation, in my view. Every time we do our best, we are transforming. We are not the same person we were anymore. The "best" changes as we experience more life and level our awareness, which is fine. We keep doing our best. When we do our best, we also avoid self-sabotage and regrets.
    This agreement is such a balanced one. It is a win-win, yet many of us don't do it. We need to be above a certain level of awareness to appreciate and implement this agreement or tenet fully.

    9. Experiences as medicine

    I love this one simply because I missed the first 15 min of a meeting as I was pondering.
    Experiences, especially failures, are like small shocks that help us build resiliency. They help us be antifragile.

    10. Putting it all together

    The beauty is that all the concepts or agreements are connected. And the link is awareness.

    This is my take, which may not be what the author intended.
    We live in dreams. We are in deep slumbers. But every suffering or experience presents a chance to either wake up or go deeper into our dreams, just like the Inception.
    The more we are self-aware, the closer we get to waking up and living life to its fullest in this world.
    Every suffering is an opportunity to grow, reflect, and be aware of our inner selves.
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