Today's Update: Thursday, February 4

February 4, 2021

Dear Student Life Team, This morning I woke up feeling like I just wasn’t ready for the day. When I got to the Ohio Union, I stopped by EspressOH to pick up my morning coffee, and the Scarlet and Great team there had written a two-word pep talk on my coffee cup lid: Go Bucks. 

It reminded me that sometimes small acts of kindness and grace can put things into perspective and help reset expectations and my entire approach to the day. It was in that moment that I realized I was letting difficult moments shape my emotions, rather than the other way around. This brought to mind one of my favorite books that I return to time and time again. It has helped me in my life and career, and I want to share the concepts with you today.  

The book is called The Four Agreements by don Miguel Ruiz. He sets out a code of conduct for our lives that can give us new freedom, true happiness and love. You may have seen my Twitter and Instagram posts about the book and what it has meant to me.  

As you can tell from the title, the central theme is four agreements you should make with yourself.  

#1: Be Impeccable with Your Word. Though it’s not always easy, it is crucial to choose your words wisely. Say only what you mean, do what you say you will and speak with truth and love. 

#2: Don't Take Anything Personally. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dreams. Remember that others’ actions and opinions do not have to affect you; you can only control your actions and reactions.  

#3: Don't Make Assumptions. Sometimes it’s easy to believe that what we think may be true really must be the truth. But making assumptions can harm our ability to make informed decisions, and it can alienate us from others. Find the courage to ask questions. When you communicate clearly, you can avoid misunderstanding, sadness and drama. This one agreement can completely transform your life. 

#4: Always Do Your Best. Your best is going to change from moment to moment. Your best will change from when you’re sick to when you are operating at 100%. But under any circumstance, simply do your best and you will avoid self-judgement and regret. 

I hope these four agreements can help you as much as they help me. By first focusing on ourselves, we can help others find Scarlet and Greatness.