Four Principles for a Happy Life
It's not great, but it's short so maybe listen
This is a short little book (or super quick listen on audiobook) that calls it's readers to live up to four basic principles. They are so concise that I can state them here.
Be impeccable with your word.
Don't take anything personally.
Don't make assumptions.
Always do your best.
These are not complicated principles. I agree that these are things we should all work to be better at. He makes a number of good points. My favorite being that happiness is a choice. I appreciate the parts about accepting and loving yourself and others.
The author provides good evidence and analysis on society to support his claims. He emphasizes how important our relationships are. But at times, his analysis reaches over-explaination . This book could have easily have been a blog post (and a short one at that).
That being said, it's not a long book either. For the length of the book, this one is not a bad pick up. Especially if you're looking for easy listening fodder. I listened to the entire thing over two days of just doing chores around the house.
For me the biggest downfall was that it was overly religious. Prior to reading, I didn't know that it would have religious content and was taken aback by some of the scripture. I was expecting something way more mainstream. It was jarring.
I can't argue with the truth of his statements. I've heard all them before from parents, teachers, pastors, friends, colleagues, mentors, Mother Teresa, C.S. Lewis, Dr. Suess and countless others. These are no secrets. They are just incredibly difficult remember and implement on a daily basis. I have to give credit where credit is due Ruiz is right even if I don't love his evidence or presentation; if you follow all of these agreements, I'd bet that you're a happy person.