Rewriting the Four Agreements

Particularly as an artist, having the daily reminder to not take anything personally and to not make assumptions was crucial. However, in episode nine of The Long and The Short Of It, Jen reveals that there’s something that doesn’t sit well with her about the Four Agreements:

The problem here is that when you tell someone not to do something, you have neglected to tell them what to actually do. So I could say to you, “Don’t take anything personally,” but that leaves you action-less. It leaves you in a state of unknown.

So, in typical Jen and Peter fashion, they proceed to magnificently rewrite the Four Agreements, using “affirmative and inclusive language” in order to encourage active implementation of the agreements. (i.e. Saying “do this” instead of “don’t do that.”)

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My Thanksgiving holiday was a prime example of this Danish concept of coziness, and so I wanted to take a moment to reflect on this in gratitude. Having spent a year and a half living in NYC at this point, it’s often difficult to feel any sense of warmth, coziness, or community. The hustle, the noise, and the ambition are all diametrically opposed to the feeling of hygge. So as I get back into the swing of work, practice, and city-living, I want to recommit to bringing a little hygge into my life each day.

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I looked out into the audience, and while I could feel that my face was bright red and very hot (the literal heat of failure), I actually couldn’t help but smile. I tried to connect with the individuals sitting in the audience, and the shame narrative running through my brain was replaced by a single sentence that kept repeating itself: “We’re all in this together; thank you for being here with me.”

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Permission to Screw Up

Ms. Hadeed’s primary thesis seems to be that by leaning into the possibility of failure and embracing the challenge of fixing one’s own screw-ups when they inevitably occur, growth and innovation are cultivated. A secondary, more understated thesis that I’m picking up on is that, as a leader, empathy and understanding for those in your managerial care is fostered by getting your own hands dirty and owning your own mistakes.

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