Four Agreements (and Clear Communication): Book Review

Picture 65A manager I worked with recently provided copies of this book to her staff (and me), so I want to say a few words about this interesting read, especially the parts about clear communication.

The book gets 4.5 stars out of 5, with 2895 reviews listed, when I checked Amazon recently, plus Oprah gave the book a thumbs up. The author is a surgeon and son in a Mexican family of traditional healers. He also went through a near-death experience due to a car accident that made him re-examine his life and write this book.

  • Be impeccable with your word.
  • Don’t take anything personally.
  • Don’t make assumptions.
  • Always do your best.

Those are the four agreements the author notes should make your life better.

“Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness, and drama.” Those words, I would think, would be near and dear to all involved in technical communication as well as all communication.

“Nothing others do is because of you. What others 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.”

That to me sounds like good advice.

The Four Agreements, Don Miguel Ruiz, M.D., 1997. Amber-Allen Publishing, San Rafael, CA (paperback, 140 pages)

By Jeanette Evans