Blake Mysockie is successful by every metric available. The 44-year-old founder of TOMS isn’t just an entrepreneurial whiz—he’s a philanthropic visionary whose $600 million brand has shown that big business can be profitable and charitable at the same time. But a few years ago, all that accomplishment had led to one big road bump: Mycoskie was exhausted.
“After dedicating 10 years to TOMS, I was burned out,” he says. Though he exercised, spent time with family, and focused on checking off all the boxes of wellbeing, he still felt like something was missing. “I was facing the same challenges that so many people are facing in modern living,” he recalls. “I was on a personal quest to live my best life.”
For Mycoskie, that quest meant more than meditating or yoga. It meant building a new venture from the ground up—one that could identify behaviors to help transform his life and the lives of thousands, maybe even millions. To do that, he partnered with friend and former U.S. Navy Seal, Pat Dossett, and enlisted an elite team of scientists from Harvard and Stanford—neuroscientists, biologists, psychiatrists, and dieticians among them—to determine the characteristics needed to reach that ultimate goal: full potential.
What all their research revealed was a collection of 10 behaviors the modern individual—busy with work and family, distracted by phones and never-ending news alerts, and rarely setting enough time aside for their own needs—neglects. Some behaviors are simple (breathing, hydration, and gratitude, for instance) while others were a bit harder to put a finger on, such as vision and clarity. “These are very simple things,” Mycoskie says. “We all know them, but we don’t necessarily practice them in a way that optimizes our life.”
Together they make up a new 10-month subscription called MadeFor. Launched in March 2020, the program delivers a box to members’ doors every month, with each one dedicated to one of 10 behaviors to foster habits—all to help you craft your best life. Unexpectedly launching amidst the stress of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the MadeFor team quickly rallied and offered Instagram Live tutorials, leadership, and meditation tips to help both members and non-members deal with anxiety and uncertainty.
Mycoskie and Dossett were the project’s first guinea pigs, putting themselves through the 10-month course before enlisting the inaugural group of more than 1,000 to test it out. Like everyone who participated, Mycoskie breezed through some months and struggled with others. Communication was easy for him, for instance. Hydration—not so much. “I didn’t realize how critical drinking water is to all of your functions,” Mycoskie recalls. “Having enough water in your system can have just as much effect on you as caffeine, and drinking more water made me more intentional in my life.” For many of the research participants, the positive results went beyond MadeFor’s intended goals—some lost up to 40 pounds; others re-established long-strained relationships. “The people who really put in the work had huge benefits,” Mycoskie says.
MadeFor isn’t designed for any one type of person—it’s democratic, egalitarian, and knows no race or creed. It’s made for all, if you will. “These 10 foundations have nothing to do with whether you are a student or executive, an athlete or a stay-at-home parent,” Mycoskie says. Not one to leave anyone behind—this is the man who made shoes a philanthropic endeavor, after all—Myscoskie has elected to offer scholarships and financial aid to those who can’t afford the $750 (or $95/month) program.
But for an entrepreneur who built one of the most recognizable brands of the 21st century from the ground up, Mycoskie surprisingly ignored one of the most fundamental basics of business: ensuring customers return. That was intentional. “One thing that was really important was that we never wanted people to think they were signing up for a monthly subscription that is continually milking you for money like so many companies do,” he says. “When you graduate, you will be different because MadeFor is a mindset intervention. And we believe that everyone is made for more.”