Essay # 2—Applying the 4 Agreements
Continuing with the course theme of how society and education impacts us, we will now look at how our “agreements” with ourselves, learned from the world, impacts our ability to be our best possible selves in The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. Ruiz’s main premise is that not only do we suffer from agreements that hinder our true selves, but that until we can recognize and act upon them, they have a disproportionate impact on shaping our future happiness and success (or lack thereof).
In this 4-5 page essay you will explore your question/answer/thesis/Controlling Idea more in-depth via one of Ruiz’s four main agreements in Chapters 2-5.
For this essay, you may respond to one of the below (choose only one):

  1. Pick an agreement and show how you could apply it to your own life (yourself as a student?)


  1. How could you use all 4 agreements to improve one aspect/facet/area/part of your life?


  1. Instead of telling you what to write about, through your exploration of the reading, you may create your own question about the text, refining and focusing it, the answer to which will end up being your thesis.

Remember to establish the ‘Controlling Idea’ of your thesis first. Then find Points that will support it (Topic Sentences) and support your Information with the reading (Quotes—the bulk of your Information should be the Ruiz text, but which you may supplement with brief outside readings or videos). Finally, make sure in this essay to expand your Explanation (“So What?” Why is this important or relevant?) sections of your analysis in your PIE paragraphs as well as in the conclusion of your essay. Your thesis should focus on one particular concept as your ‘controlling idea.’
Helpful hints:

  • Lay out a clear outline with focused thesis and topic sentences.
  • Try to develop your ideas using the PIE
  • Use paragraphs that clearly support your main point/thesis.
  • Wrap up your thinking with a conclusion that summarizes your ideas on the agreement you chose or how the 4 are significant into changing one aspect of yourself, or whatever else you chose to focus on.
  • Use Noun Phrase Appositives (NPA’s) & Adjective Clauses (AC’s) as well as…
  • Use coordinators and plenty of subordinators to join & allow your sentences to flow.