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Bert and John Jacobs are the creators of a 100 million dollar t-shirt company Life is Good. They grew up the youngest of six children in a lower-middle class Boston neighborhood. When the brothers were in grade school, their parents nearly died in a violent car accident. Their mother managed to escape the incident with just few broken bones, but their father completely lost the use of his right hand. In the months that followed, the stress of physical therapy turned their father into an angry person.
“He did a lot of yelling when we were in grade school,” John said. “And life certainly wasn’t perfect. There were often difficult things happening around the house.”
The Jacobs brothers selling their first T-shirts on the street in 1993
Though their homelife was not ideal, their mother, Joan, believed that life was still good. Every night while sitting around the dinner table Joan would ask her six kids to tell her something good that happened that day. The process made all the difference for the boys in a troubling time.
“As simple as mom’s words were, they changed the energy in the room,” the brothers write. “Before we knew it, we were all riffing on the best, funniest, or most bizarre part of our day.”That optimism was something that our family always had, even when we had little else,” they write.
“Their mother proved to them that optimism was a “courageous choice you make every day.”
What a wonderful way to stay positive and live life to the fullest.
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