OS19: Khe Hy – On Leaving Wall St, His Happiness Quotient, “Rad Reads” & More

Work without love is slavery

Mother Teresa

Khe HyKhe Hy had begun his march up Wall Street’s golden ladder seeking, perhaps even expecting, the equation to be true:

Make money = be happy.

It wasn’t. According to Khe (Khe, pronounced “Kay”, is short for Khemaridh), he’d feel a slight spike of happiness after receiving a bonus, only to quickly fall back to earth finding himself grinding it out another day…

Some might say that most in the corporate world feel this way, and that this is the “reality” of work, life and society. We need merely accept this, suck it up and show up.

This, though, is where Khe made the uncommon choice. Much to the chagrin of many a colleague and friend, he quit.

What did he do instead? He focused on happiness, candor and giving value…as much as he could.

Nowadays, Khe rates himself a 9.5/10 (on most days) in terms of happiness. Interestingly, his bank account is smaller, but his quotient of joy significantly higher.

We celebrate Khe, and his wondrous journey on this week’s Ownstream Podcast. Specifically, we discuss:

  • The notion of “risk” and what might be the biggest risk of all
  • The meaning of “meh” and how it changed Khe’s life
  • How revealing his struggles and challenges on his blog (rather than hiding them and pretending to have it all together) allowed him to more truly connect with others online, growing his “RadReads” business
  • How becoming a father transformed him, and showed him what truly matters in life (and Twitter’s role in that realization)
  • His practice of “uncomfortable introspection” and how it has accelerated his growth across virtually every area of his life, including his business
  • The organic nature of entrepreneurship and how keeping things simple has allowed him to build an elegant, fun and impactful business
  • How following his excitement and happiness has wildly transformed his life, from a Wall Street “rising star” to giving his own TED talk, “From Hustle to Wholeness”

Khe’s story IS the Ownstream story…trying the mainstream path only to find it lacking in the real substance of life. And then, having the courage to step off and carve a unique, vibrant path through the world. Our deepest hope is that this conversation will inspire you to do the same.


Khe Hy

Selected Links from this Episode

Khe’s world:

Book recommendations:

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