The Most Powerful Tools We Have (The ‘Antidote for Exhaustion’ Challenge III)

“Your word is the power that you have to create. Your word is the gift that comes directly from God. Your word is a force, it is the power you have to express and communicate, to think and thereby to create the events in your life. Your word is the most powerful tool you have as a human; it is the tool of magic. Depending upon how it is used, your word can set free,
or it can enslave you more than you know.  All of the magic you possess is based on your words.”
– Don Miguel Ruiz

Points to Ponder:
Are you careless with your words?
What things in your life do you do half-heartedly?

Action Item:
Focus this week on being impeccable with your words and always doing your best.
And, if you haven’t already, order your copy of The Four Agreements to read over spring break.


by Neissa Brown Springmann

by Neissa Brown Springmann

Throughout last week I found myself relying on the advice of Don Miguel Ruiz’s two ‘agreements:’ don’t make assumptions and don’t take things personally. It really is amazing how often I need to apply these rules to my life and how much energy they conserve. I was doing a good job until Friday morning, when my father accused me of something that created an exorcist-like reaction in my body. The scenario was this: Tuesday night after putting the kids to sleep, I got a second wind and stayed up too late.  As I was about to go to bed, my three-year-old son Durant woke up and didn’t go back to sleep for another three-ish hours. Needless to say, I got about two hours of sleep. Then the next night, while I did go to bed at a decent hour, Durant and Malaine (my ten-month-old daughter) woke up again in the middle of the night…when it rains it pours, right?! Thankfully, after a diaper change and bottle, Malaine was back to sleep, but not Durant. As you might expect, I was in a sleep deficit and my body was beginning to shut down. By Thursday I had a scratchy throat with mild body aches and by the evening I was feeling pretty rough, but nothing I felt a good night’s rest couldn’t cure.

It just so happened that Thursday night my dad and step-mom spent the night with us. Typically my energy is pretty high, but that night it was low and they were aware of the past two days’ events. So, Friday morning, after a healing night’s rest, my father, whom I adore, put his arm around me and said,  “You know, for someone who has a health and fitness business, you sure don’t do a good job of taking care of yourself.”  He also suggested that my Achilles heels are lack of sleep and stress. It was at that exact moment my head spun around and my eyes bugged out of their sockets. For a minute I was speechless, but not too long afterwards I respectfully disagreed and told him all of the reasons why he was absolutely wrong. I also told him I knew he was coming from a loving place, but that he needed to retract his words. I also suggested that if he were to survey 100 moms with a three-year old and ten month old, who also have a busy traveling husband, they would be stressed too! And, ON TOP OF THAT I AM RUNNING MY OWN BUSINESS!!! Whew. I think you get the picture. Inside I was offended and fuming, which led me to call both my mom and my husband, Russell.

Clearly I took everything my dad said very personally, which led me down a rabbit hole of assumptions… Do I come across like a crazy stressed person and even worse, am I not being impeccable with my words? Do I not walk my talk, as Don Miguel Ruiz suggests is so important? Are my words meaningless? Am I a horrible leader? I’m a horrible mom!, etc. etc. etc.

While replaying by dad’s words and trying to remember that he was only trying to help, it dawned on me that while it might not always look pretty or even appear the healthiest, I can say with confidence that I always do my best, which is one of the four agreements. And, as long as I am doing my best then I can appreciate his concern, but it doesn’t go beyond that. I must also have personal confidence and discernment so I can honestly critique my best, without needing the approval of others, which is what I was shopping for from my mom and Russell.

Don Miguel Ruiz suggests that being Impeccable with your words is the most important of all four agreements, because it is the correct use of your energy; it means to use your energy in the direction of truth and love for yourself and others. If you make an agreement with yourself to be impeccable with your words, just with that intention, the truth will manifest through you and clean all of the emotional poison that exists within us. But making this agreement is difficult because we have learned to do precisely the opposite. We have learned to lie and gossip for example, as a habit of communication with others. And more importantly, we have learned to lie to to ourselves, as in telling ourselves we aren’t good enough, thin enough, smart enough, pretty enough or qualified enough, which negatively effects our relationship with ourselves and with others: how we communicate with ourselves is a reflection of how we love ourselves, which gives others permission to treat us exactly the same. It’s the law of attraction.

Finally, by always doing our best, Don Miguel says that it allows the other three agreements (‘don’t take things personally,’ ‘don’t make assumptions,’ and ‘be impeccable with your words’) to become deeply ingrained habits. He also suggests to “keep in mind that your best is never going to be the same from one moment to the next, as everything is alive and changing all of the time. Therefore, your best will sometimes be high quality, and other times it will not be as good. But, regardless of of the quality, keep doing your best because doing your best will allow you to be productive and to be good to yourself, because you will be giving yourself to your family, to your community and everything. Doing your best is taking action because you love it, not because you are expecting a reward.”

All in all, life is too short and too precious to not living amazingly. And, by applying the common-sense wisdom and powerful tools from The Four Agreements we optimize our ability to live our best blow-out life. If you haven’t ordered or read the book yet, it’s not too late. The iGnite team is reading it over Spring Break, and it can easily be ordered here on Amazon for less than $8.00. It will be at your doorstep within two days of ordering. The Kindle Edition is available too. I hope you enjoy it as much as I am!



1 thought on “The Most Powerful Tools We Have (The ‘Antidote for Exhaustion’ Challenge III)

  1. Pingback: The Final Step: Having Gratitude for our Ungratifying Traits | the iGnite blog

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