What if kindness was cool? I stumbled across Jeremy Goldberg’s Instagram feed Long Distance Love Bombs, and something about his turn of phrase with a bit of unabashed profanity thrown in resonated. This guy speaks love and has no filter. I can work with this. What’s more is there is an authenticity I’ve ever experienced before. Jeremy is doing, not just thinking, what we all desperately need right now. He’s showing up for humanity, in the most raw, honest, passionate and vulnerable way possible and I got a chance to chat with him.
What prompted the Long Distance Love Bomb idea and making kindness cool?
JG: The kindness journey started in an airport of all places, where I encountered a woman in tears, alone. Wanting to help in some way, I took a card out of my wallet. On the back, I wrote, “It’ll be okay. And you will be, too.” I walked over, looked her in the eyes, and handed her the card. I put my hand on her shoulder for just a second and then I smiled, I turned away and walked off.
I sat on the plane and I wondered if this is type of world that I want to live in, if this is the best we could do, and I decided it’s not. I started daydreaming. What if tomorrow was better than today? I decided I was going to try to make a difference, make the world better than it was yesterday and I was going to start trying to make kindness cool. I started thinking about what my kindness revolution might look like, and realized it’s the same as any other revolution: start with the idea. Ideas are just words, so I started there, with words. I started writing, and I started sharing, and I started small.
I began leaving cards in public spaces, dropping my little long distance love bombs all over the place. I left notes around town, small encouraging insights, bits of inspiration. I left these cards on bus seats, in stores and restaurants, under windshield wipers… I liked the idea of surprise, an unexpected epiphany that in our crazy, cruel world, a stranger could stumble on connection, on hope, on help.
Have you always been a writer, and how would you encourage others seeking this labor of love path?
JG: Nope! Although, I do remember loving creative writing in 4th grade. We had to write short stories about a cave, and I remember just being enamored with the possibility of my imagination.
Advice? Just try shit. Do it. Take action. You’re never fully prepared and ready is an illusion, so may as well just go ahead and live the life you desire. We’re all going to die one day anyway, so why not try to live your best life? The love bombs approach works for me because it’s free, easy, fun, anonymous, and effective. Words are powerful.
What makes your heart sing and your soul ache? What gives you purpose, as that’s really what this whole life thing is about, right?
JG: I think that a soul ache and a heart song are two sides of the same coin, two verses in the same life song. A sunset inspires me but also saddens me with the confirmation that nothing is permanent. I’m often awestruck by the details, little things, the miracles in the mundane and the beauty that surrounds us. A weed growing through sidewalk. A smile from a stranger. It’s all a vital part of the experience of us, of the tragic beauty that surrounds each moment. Tom Robbins sums it up, “’I believe in everything; nothing is sacred. I believe in nothing; everything is sacred.”
You’re never fully prepared and ‘ready’ is an illusion, so may as well just go ahead and live the life you desire.
Challenge gives me purpose. Growth. Learning. Improving. Inspiring. I want to get better being me, being open, feeling free. Life as an ever-evolving process, that’s what gives me purpose. Surviving the darkness. Feeling despite the numbness. It’s all just a big game disguised as a dream. May as well smile and participate.
Who & What inspires you?
JG: People who are real, raw, open hearted. Moments of serendipity and magic. The world is full of inspiration. We just need to know where to look. Plants grow towards light. Nothing ever stops the tides, or prevents the sunrise. Time is always on the move. Life is a scavenger hunt and we decide what we look for. We find what we seek and we need to choose carefully.
Is there one Long Distance Love Bomb that resonates with you the most?
JG: “You are the lighthouse that guides love back home.” I led a retreat last year in Bali and the participants all surprised me with little notes hidden in all my stuff. That one was left in the back of my phone, under the transparent case. I still have it there.
Our world right now seems bogged down in some seriously negative energy. How do we create a culture of authentic positivity when we are being served so much anger?
JG: We are the thoughts we think and the food we eat. We are active consumers as well as passionate creators, the authors of the story we tell ourselves. Everyone is doing the best they can, and hate never made anything worth keeping. Let’s just keep breathing. Be 1% better than yesterday and create the world you long to see. Be the change you think you need. The world changes when people change, and history is filled with individuals who started a revolution by simply living differently, thinking differently, and spreading their message in an authentic and convincing way. It starts with you.
One piece of advice for teens to take away, as a “words of wisdom” gift from you.
JG: Choose your heroes carefully. And question everything.
There are many like minded souls out there doing good work, connecting positive energy, and I’d like to think Metiza is one of them. In our quest to make the world a more authentic, kind and positive place, it’s a blessing to find our tribe. Jeremy and Long Distance Love Bombs is one of those people and I’m honored to call him my friend. Join the revolution!
Images via Long Distance Love Bombs.