How I See The World


These last few weeks i’ve been tweeting random, sometimes cheesy “Mick-isms.” I really liked this one about planning. Here’s one about dreaming (continued). Another about confidence, and one about work-ethic. And to acknowledge my own cheesyness, I tweeted this.

It made me wonder if I could somehow summarize how I see the world, in just one post. So i’ll attempt to do that here. Bring on the cheese. :) Hopefully it sheds some light on my values, my personality, and my vision. I’m sure I missed a lot… but this is a good start.


Taking care of my family and making sure they are happy is the most important thing to me. Everything else will always be secondary. I’m constantly reminding myself of this as it’s easy to slip into the grind of insane startup hours and forget what actually matters most in life. “No success in the world can compensate for failure in the home.” I’m lucky. Super lucky.


I dream big. There’s no other way to dream. Life is too short to constantly be playing it safe and bunting to get on first. I live life to hit home runs. I’m convinced God wants us all to be swinging for the fences. “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.” 1 Corinthians 9:24


I wanna win. I demand it. And I expect it. This confidence is probably my biggest weakness. It’s also my biggest strength. I hate losing more than I love winning. I’m a killer competitor. I’m relentless. I will always find a way to win.


I’m not afraid to fail. It happens sometimes. I lose. I fail. As hard as it is to accept, i’ve come to appreciate it. It gets me one step closer to victory. It’s hard to savor the sweet taste of success unless you’ve felt the bitter, sour taste of defeat. But don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing I hate more than not coming in 1st.


I love to learn. If we’re not learning, we’re not progressing. And that is deadly. It’s one of the purposes of life. I really enjoy reading and understanding new trends, technologies and skills. And I love to surround myself with people who are interesting and smart, so I can constantly be learning. :)


I don’t mind when people doubt me or my ideas. Haters gonna hate. I use it as fuel to work harder. Proving people wrong has been the story of my life. I operate best as an underdog. I’ll sneak up and surprise when no one expects it. I’m a silent assassin.


One’s honor and integrity is the essence of one’s soul. These are characteristics I hold in highest regard, and can only be earned over time. I do my best to be honest, moral, and ethical in everything I do. Hopefully anyone who has worked with me would agree.


I come across as a layed-back guy. If you were to peak inside my brain, you’d see a different story. I’m always thinking. Always processing. Always working. Always calculating my next move. Life is a chess game, and I try to stay 10 moves ahead. My mind often overheats. The intensity and passion keeps me awake at night.


I’m a builder, a creator. I hope to continue to build startups for a very long time. Startups are my passion. But eventually and perhaps in parallel, my ultimate vision is to be in a position that I can serve and share with others. My parents have been great examples of being charitable and generous with their resources. They weren’t rich, but they were always willing to give and share what they had. And I see people like Bill and Melinda Gates and what they’re doing to make the world a better place — I can’t help but be inspired. I wanna do that someday, in my own small world. Having an abundance of resources or knowledge is a heavy burden to bear, we’re expected to do good with it.


I like to have fun. It’s easy to obsess over reaching the end goal, and not enjoy the journey. I do my best to enjoy every step of the way. Life is too short to not smile every single day and be happy. I believe that we are on this earth to grow, learn, and find happiness. I try to surround myself with people who are happy, and who make me happy. And when storms come — they always do — we adapt and roll with the punches together.

The Conclusion

Whether you see the world the way I see it or not is irrelevant. The beauty of life is that we’re constantly meeting and intersecting with new and interesting people, celebrating their uniqueness, learning from their experiences, and sharing moments that might change our life. Life would be too boring any other way.

If you feel a desire to connect with me, ping me. I always enjoy meeting new people.

  • James Dickerson

    Hey Mick- great post…you seem to have a relentlessly persistent and winning attitude. Talk about a formula for success :)
    This post by James Altucher inspired me in a similar way, check it out if you have time–

    • Mick Hagen

      Thanks James for your comments. And that post you shared is definitely interesting.

  • Malini Hoover

    Our middle and high schools should be teaching Mick’s guiding principles to our teens!  America will be back on its feet in no time!  Our country needs more young entrepreneurs with creative ideas & dream to pursue them.

    • Mick Hagen

      Thank you so much Malini! I appreciate the kind words.

  • Paige

    Hi Mick! I really enjoyed reading your thoughts — your positive attitude and desire to dream big is really inspiring! I am currently a High School student, and like you, I am dreaming big — it is my dream to attend an Ivy League school. I really admire what you’ve done with Zinch and I was wondering if you had any suggestions for me showcasing my talents and skills?

  • Paige

    Hi Mick! I really enjoyed reading your thoughts — your positive attitude and desire to dream big is really inspiring! I am currently a High School student, and like you, I am dreaming big — it is my dream to attend an Ivy League school. I really admire what you’ve done with Zinch and I was wondering if you had any suggestions for me showcasing my talents and skills?

    • Mick Hagen

      Thanks for reaching out Paige. I appreciate it. You don’t need to attend an ivy league school to be great. Just work hard and be relentless. Good things will happen. :)

  • tobe alloy

    great post, like the passion with which it was dished out.

  • Brandt Page

    Love the blog and new site – you did a killer job with it. Did you use the platform? if so, how’d you do it? my is just one page…can I build it out, like you did?

    Loved the baller page, and mormon page. way to represent (action:with a fist pound to the chest)

    • Mick Hagen

      Thanks Brandt. Appreciate you stopping by. I made the website myself. It’s all custom. :)

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  • Andrew West

    Mick, It’s all great (thoughtful) until the Mormon-religious part. You inherited that.  I know you are a thinking man from everything I’ve read – there are more than 40,000 religions, how’d you pick yours and why?

    I think when people are truly enlightened they are still curious.  They honestly don’t’ “know why” and are not arrogant enough (or infected enough) to suggest otherwise.

    I think you want to make a difference in the world.  That’s why I came to your site.  Your work seems valuable.  Why taint it with religion?  At least for me, it undermines all of it.

    • Mick Hagen

      Andrew,Thanks for stopping by. My faith is an incredibly important aspect to my life. It has shaped who I am and how I view the world. Shoot me an email, i’d be happy to answer some of your questions in more detail… 

  • Ada Aguilar

    I love your thought and your inspiring words of wisdom, your great example and the endurance that you show in life, keep it up because it will help others

    • Mick Hagen

      Thanks Tia!

  • plasterers bristol

    Hi mike You have a beautiful family mate, and i love your photos of you and your wife traveling, you look like a very happy family..

    • Mick Hagen

      Thanks! Much appreciated.


    As a wannabe startup mogul, this post (and my discovery of you via Joel at BufferApp) came along at a great time.  Your words are encouraging…your perspective is great…the fact that you actually talk about your faith, and *gasp* quote scripture is refreshing.  One of my main short term goals is to surround myself with more people like you.  Keep up the good work and I look forward to following your posts. 

    • Mick Hagen

      Thanks for the comment. Really appreciate it. Good luck w/ your hustle and lemme know if you ever need a beta tester. And if you’re in SF, ping me let’s connect. Cheers.