I had the honour of meeting Bert Jacobs, the co-founder of Life Is Good, at a conference last week. His genuine spirit and adorable nature had over 900 entrepreneurs rallying his cry that kindness and optimism are the keys to success and happiness.
He came on stage in sneakers, light-coloured blue jeans and a white shirt. He looked very much like a surfer “dude” with his tussled, brown curls of hair and a full moustache and beard. Within minutes he took off his shoes and later confessed that he didn’t remember taking them off as he was just in the moment, sharing with us his journey from hocking t-shirts in the streets with his brother John to their multi-million dollar business at Life is Good.
Several of his key points will stick with me and they are worth sharing with you. Take note as they are what we call ‘keepers’:
1. “Don’t waste your energy of your wild and precious life on what’s wrong with it. Focus every day on what is right.” That is such a powerful message. Every day things go wrong, we are frustrated by things we cannot control and yet his message is to focus on all the things that are right in our lives; our health, our homes, our families, our friends and our work. There is so much to be thankful for that we often forget how much we truly are blessed to have.
2. “Write a bucket list.” Bert suggests that a bucket list is something to have and revise regularly. He has big dreams on his list that have come to fruition and he has some that he has yet to experience. Having a bucket list gives him something to look forward to that inspires him to continue to move forward.
3. “Optimism opens doors.” That is such a profound statement and one that has literally opened up thousands of doors for him and his brother and for their company. Their motto of ‘life is good’ truly is a testament to what they embody as people and as a company. Even in the face of tragedy as one of their very own was at the finish line during the bombings at the Boston Marathon, the motto was that life was good. He was alive and he would make it.
You don’t always get the opportunity to meet people who embrace their lives with such love and optimism. There is much negativity and cynicism which makes for a very painful world. And yet, here is Bert and his brother John, with their buddies Jake and Rocket, who want us to focus on what is good in our lives & in this world and be an active part in it. They encourage us to look at life with optimism and faith, to be kind and loving to each other and show up for what is important.
I’m with them on their mission. And I encourage you to join us too. It’s far more fun (and sometimes easier) to look at life knowing that it’s going to be ok and that life is good.
For more information about Life Is Good you can visit their website and read about their story, what they are doing to help children in need through Playmakers, and their upcoming family music festival.
Pierrette Raymond is the founder and owner of Moving Forward Matters.