Shouldn’t discovering JOY be fun?

I find that my criticism is a persistent little pest. It crept up, without hesitation, too many times today. It’s apparent to me that my pride isn’t just going to go away, I’m going to have to work through it. Let’s start with…


I’m a business owner. The company is now in it’s third year after celebrating the two-year mark on July 1, 2008. While this is a success in and of itself, about every three-to-four months, I get in a funk. And when I say a funk, I mean that I’m moody, dissatisfied and generally frustrated…with a lot of things. This is prime time for my criticism to step in. For some reason, it feels justified.

After going through three notable funks, I’ve only been able to conclude that I want what the “successful” guys have. I look at the “Top 30 under 30″ and my name isn’t there. I look at guys who are “making their mark” and wonder why I’m spinning my wheels. I look for “inspiration” from their blogs or the “top” whatever lists and stir in my frustration that I’m not doing a thing to reach this level. The cycle of jealously is a never ending circle that I jump into with both feet in hopes that it will spur me on to even more success. But, it never satisfies. I still get funky.

The other day, a guy stopped by my office to do some freelance work for us. After chatting a bit, I questioned his rates. I told him that he was undervaluing himself and that he needed to raise his rates. He reacted by saying, “how can I raise my rates if I’m not getting the opportunity to send a quote?”

After he left, my thoughts were arrested. How could I be so … ungrateful. At Motiveight, is seems like we are always tracking down new opportunities. Even recently, we’ve been fortunate to submit proposals to great companies like Inspiration Networks, CompuPay, Willow Creek Association and others. It was then that I realized that this guy would kill to be in my shoes and here I sat ungrateful because I don’t have what these other “successful” guys have.

CS Lewis says, “Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man.”


The more I search, the more I find that pride and joy are mutually exclusive. If I want one, I have to give up the other.

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  • matt

    This spoke to me, man! Thanks for sharing this.

  • Stephanie

    This is so good!!! Thanks for sharing.

  • Shawn

    Thanks Kyle, you are successful in all the ways it truly counts. I appreciate you my friend. This was a good gut check.

  • Sam

    This was really inspirational. I can totally relate to everything you wrote here. I have been a business owner for almost 14 years and I’m sorry to say that feeling will never go away. However its the mark of a true entrepreneur. One that is never satisfied with status quo and always is looking over his shoulder at others. Although it doesn’t feel like a good thing at the time, its just g-d giving you the nudge you need to keep going and keep at it.

    Success is defined by so many things..sometimes when one thing is moving along so well (family, faith..babymaking :) ) it gives you too much time to dwell on some of the valleys of life. Peaks are all around you.. I read your blog hear your updates on life and work and family and come home to Michael and bring it up to him periodically and always say “wow these are some really blessed people.”. Just this week your status’ were all about family and playing golf and I thought how lucky you were to have that. I have no family to ever visit – so see its all about perspective.

    Keep the faith- you are a successful husband and father- and yes provider…the funks are a part of it all :)