“Personal significance, or taking things personally, is the greatest expression of selfishness, because we assume that everything is “me.”- The four chords, chapter 3 yes, look at things personally, it`s around us. Our ego. We believe that the world revolves around us and that everything that people do is especially geared towards us. Intellectually, this may sound ridiculous or extreme, but it is what we do all the time without realizing it. The second agreement simply says: don`t take anything in person. I think all four are equally important, this agreement has had the greatest impact on my life…. You customize if you are sitting in a restaurant, and it takes 10 minutes for your waiter to confirm your presence, so you think he/she intentionally ignores you (for a variety of reasons). In reality, you have no idea what`s going on: your server may have thought someone else would take care of you; There may be problems behind the scenes that you don`t know about; may have personal problems and are not fully present. None of them has anything to do with you, but when you customize, you think it`s them. It gives you an excuse to direct your anger at someone else. That`s what happens in relationships all the time.
Suppose you`ve recently started meeting someone who writes texts every day. One day you don`t get text, so you automatically think you`ve done something wrong. Did you say anything to him off? Has he met anyone else? They begin to feel insecure and fill themselves with fear. There could be 100 reasons why you didn`t receive a text. They may have faced a family emergency, or they dropped their phone in the toilet, or they felt introspective and didn`t want to talk to anyone. The reason they don`t send TEXT messages (whatever it is) probably has nothing to do with you. Ruiz explains: “Nothing that others do is because of you. It`s up to himself.
All men live in their own dreams, in their own minds; they are in a completely different world from the one we live in. If we take something personal, we assume that they know what is in our world, and we try to impose our world on their world. Let`s focus on that. Your reality is simple: YOUR reality. Their reality is YOUR reality. It`s a huge distinction, and emotionally accepting goes a long way to understanding personalization. But if you don`t take it personally, you are immune in the middle of hell. Immunity in the midst of hell is the gift of this agreement. As you get used to taking nothing personally, you don`t have to trust what others do or say. All they have to do is trust each other to make responsible decisions. You are never responsible for the actions of others; You are only responsible for yourself. If they really understand this and refuse to take things in person, you cannot be hurt by the careless comments or actions of others.