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Cold Showers, Spring-loaded shoes & Letting Go with Kevin Rose

Serial Entrepreneur |  San Francisco, CA

When one of the founders of Digg says he tries to start every day with a 1-minute freezing cold shower, you take notice. Sure, it’s your first instinct to ask Kevin Rose about tech investments and entrepreneurship, but like many of us, his accomplishments don’t define him. Thankfully, he was kind enough share some of the lessons he’s learned through the years.


Once a Builder, Always a Builder

When we asked Kevin to describe who he is as a person, he stumbled. We were expecting a long list of accomplishments that includes credits like working at Google Ventures and investing in (at the time) startups like Facebook and Twitter. But instead of sounding like a LinkedIn profile, Kevin explained how he’s constantly evolving, both personally and professionally.

“I never have a concrete answer for that because I’m changing all the time. I’m always learning,” he says. “But ever since I was a kid, I’ve always been a builder trying to invent things.” Whether he’s building a new app, or building a successful team, Kevin’s instinct to innovate is quite consistent.

'When I was a kid, I once opened up my tennis shoes to put springs in them so I could jump like Jordan' Click To Tweet


Outgrowing Ego

As a successful entrepreneur, tech investor, and podcaster, Kevin has learned a lot in his career. But one piece of advice he would tell his younger self is to, “let go of the ego and ask the dumb questions. Ego only gets in the way of achieving things,” he shares.

Setting the ego aside isn’t easy, but the ability to let things go is something Kevin is starting to master. “What I realized in my 30s is that I would try to plan and control things. But as you get older you realize there’s so much out of your control,” he explains.


The Art of Letting Go

Kevin is a natural planner. Whether it’s in his personal or professional life, he likes to plot things out and know his next move. He used to think he could define happiness before it happened, but as he got older he began to realize that, “You can’t have these hard and fast rules about happiness and life. There’s too much structure there to take the randomness that occurs.” And it’s this ability to embrace the randomness that’s helped bring balance to Kevin’s life.


Mindfulness is the Ability to Float

When it comes to being mindful, Kevin meditates as much as he can. He reflects and thinks about a process that allows him to obtain balance both personally and professionally. But meditation and living a mindful lifestyle didn’t come over night, it was something he realized later in his career.

'It’s about accepting what is.' Click To Tweet

“The best analogy is swimming. When you’re in the water and you start grasping at things to hold onto, you can tire yourself out. But if you let go, you can just float,” he explains. “It’s about accepting what is. Learning these principles has allowed me to relax and appreciate the day,” he says.

With regards to letting go, Kevin is also a big supporter of journaling and the concept of reflection. “Journaling is a form of self-therapy. It lets you release feelings. It’s such a powerful tool that anyone can use and it’s something you can do on your own,” he says.

Kevin is currently developing Oak Meditation, an app that trains people on how to meditate. “I found that a lot of the meditation apps tell you what you can do and when, but I always wanted something that could help me get trained up so I could go on my own,” he says

And when you look at his career in technology, his investments, and what he’s built since those spring-loaded tennis shoes, carving his own path is something Kevin Rose is pretty good at. To stay connected with Kevin head over to THE JOURNAL, a monthly newsletter with product reviews, podcasts and articles.


Kevin’s questions for the KYŌ App:

  • Am I finding balance?
  • How can I empower someone else today?
  • If I’m building something, what’s my insight?

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