It’s good to be a robot entrepreneur.

Being all logic and no emotions, you can make hard decisions with ease. You hire the right people based on the correct metrics. You make difficult calls with the deftness of Occam’s Razor. You fire poor performers without any emotional baggage. You’re a machine.

You may wish you could rely solely on logic, but that is only half of what you need to be a good founder.

Startup culture places immense value in our logical thought process. I do too. But without incorporating both sides of your brain in your decision-making (slow logic and fast intuition), you risk being swept down the river when the dam of startup stress bursts. …

What if they lead in opposite directions?

“Do what you love, in the place you love, with people you love,” said my friend Brad Feld. Since then, I have relentlessly chased this vision: leaving the company I founded, traveling, giving up most of what I own, and moving to San Francisco.

I came here to build a new company. But after wandering the hipster cafes of SOMA for 31 days meeting amazing people, I failed to find something I love. While I dreamt up ideas for a company, my personal passion tugged at me. …

Image for post
Image for post
Elephants roaming in Damaraland, Namibia. Ben Huh

I am writing to remember what I learned in the last 12 months of our life traveling to 37 countries. I originally wrote this letter of stream of thoughts to myself, but I’ll take the risk of publishing it. I hope it’s as helpful to you as it is to me.

The word gratitude seems too small to describe how fortunate and thankful we are for our gap year.

I’ve come to understand clichés.

When Emily and I planned our gap year, we did not set goals. This was our first extended free time to examine our life and happiness. I did not want to set expectations in case of failure. But of course, it’s not possible to start a trip like ours without expectations. As we planned our travels, I began to imagine spectacular moments, expect amazing experiences, anticipate great food, and dream up exciting adventures. We did experience all those things, but they deviated sharply from my mental image. We flew a drone on all 7 continents, held a baby panda bear, watched sunrises and sunsets color the giant Moai statues on Easter Island, argued our way out from crooked cops who demanded bribes, and sailed the Mediterranean. With the ups, I experienced the downs. I began writing a book, but halted the project mid-way. …


Ben Huh

Now: Building New Cities at Y Combinator. Then: CEO and Founder of Cheezburger and co-founder of Circa.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store