Leaders Library: Do You Have the Right Energy to Get on the Bus?

What do you see: a curse or a gift? This is the fundamental question being asked in the book I recently read for our work book club.

The Energy Bus by Jon Gordon, was recommended by my son, Mike, whose baseball coach  recommended it to him. The book helps people see life as a gift, and to realize the answer to the question above is in how we approach it.

Is your glass half empty or half full?

The main character, George, is seeing life as a series of curses not gifts. It begins on a Monday with George’s car breaking down, which in George’s sorry world is just another curse in a series of curses happening to him on a regular basis. It forces George onto public transportation, something he considers yet another curse.

But his journey on public transportation becomes a life changing gift. He’s not on an ordinary bus, it’s the energy bus. The bus driver becomes George’s personal navigator, helping him see life and its happenings as a gift not a curse. She teaches him that the way he sees life is a choice. 

Follow the rules to avoid a bumpy ride

The Energy Bus has the “10 Rules for the Ride of Your Life.”  Are you open to the rules?  You need to start with a big YES!  As the author says, “Nothing is more positive than the power of yes.”  So George reluctantly agrees to follow the rules.

I am not going to cover all 10 rules, or tell you how they changed George’s life permanently.  You can read the book for that. And trust me, it is absolutely worth the read. But I will share a few that really stuck with me.  These are the rules I run around the house preaching to my wife and kids (yes I am really that annoying—ask anyone.)  Here are my top 4:

  • You’re the Driver of Your Own Bus – take responsibility for, and control of, your life. One of the best quotes, “No one else chooses your attitude, you do.” This is about deciding where you want to go and owning your ride.
  • Fuel Your Ride with Positive Energy – Positive energy is the fuel for your bus. In the story, a wise man says “I have two dogs in my head, one is positive and one is negative. Which one wins? The one you feed, so feed the positive one!”
  • No Energy Vampires Allowed on My Bus -This is my favorite. I use this all the time around the house in texts to my children and wife. Now, my daughter Ellie uses it against me complete with a voice inflection, “Dad, do not be an energy vampire!” Followed by a slanted smile and tilted head. The author had so many good points, but this one sticks out: “…make positive energy a muscle, the more you use it the stronger it gets.”
  • Have Fun and Enjoy the Ride – Do not take things so seriously. Everyone has failures and setbacks. That is not the point, the lesson is in how you react to them.

There’s plenty of room on the energy bus

Last week we had our book club to discuss “The Energy Bus.” It was a seriously enjoyable evening listening to the power this book had on each person’s life. While reading the book, nothing is a surprise – you know these rules. But, it is so easy to get caught up in negative energy, and forget that we have the power to change that at any point. Now, we are applying the rules around the office as well.  We’re just getting started, but it’s making a difference.

While a select group of us participated in book club, the great news is, the bus is never full!  In fact, I was so inspired by this book and its impact that I purchased more copies for others on our team to pick up and enjoy.  There is room for everyone so watch your step and board the bus –  it is one fun ride.

On behalf of my team, thanks for the recommendation Mike.