“Design is a tool to enhance our humanity. It’s a frame for life.”Ilse Crawford
We can discuss vision until we are blue in the face. We can list our goals and upgrade our cohorts, but to what end? We apply design thinking to our furniture, our clothing, our landscapes and architecture. Why not embed design thinking into the very fabric of our lives?
If were are existing within lives that circumstances designed or that we have allowed others to design for us, we will never achieve the results we dream of or live the life we are meant to live.
Let me be clear: develop a growth mindset, achieve mastery in your field, be kind, be present, write the vision, join the 5 AM Club…do all the things. But if you do not intentionally design a life with the user in mind (that being you), your dream will remain just that…a dream.
In order to yank your dream from the outer echelons of your imagination and into the dimension in which you exist, you’ve got to design a life that is conducive to your dream. Design a life with the user in mind.
So what is UX?
UX Design is an empathically-driven practice crafted to solve human and business problems, and remove obstacles and friction from a user’s desired goals—hopefully delivering delight in the process.Jason Ogle
UX is improving how useful, easy, pleasant, marketable, or addictive it is to use a product.Steve Krug
What does that look like practically?
1) Discover or establish a natural rhythm to your day, week…life. For me, my most powerful, alive, creative times of day are those first 3-4 hours of every day. My weakest, most vulnerable, least kind are those hours after I’ve reached my limit…yet I push. Why then, would I design a schedule that ignores that reality?
2) Reflect on your Linchpin needs and prioritize them. Linchpin needs are those needs that once they are met, everything else is held together. For some this is scheduled solitude, play, beauty, faith strengthening activity, community, simplicity, quality sleep, etc.
3) Ask yourself the question: How easy is my life to use? One of the vital qualities of good design is that the user doesn’t have to think about how to use the product, they just use it. It’s a natural progression of events. The product is an extension of who they are and what they need. Our lives should have an organic flow, or ease of use.
“Ease of use may be invisible, but its absence sure isn’t.”IBM
4) Simplify like your life depends on it. Just like with any other good design there are various iterations of it. Refining details, whittling away what isn’t necessary…what may be causing use to be cumbersome or exhausting. If an element has no value add, reconsider your commitment to it. In the process, we end up discovering the truly meaningful things in life and designing a user experience that is rich and rewarding.
“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.”Hans Hofmann
5) Design a life that is stunning, breathtaking, gorgeous and addictive. Design a life that you can’t wait to live. It keeps you on the edge of your seat. Dream so big that you have to grow into it. Then surround yourself with visual cues that point back to your big why.
“There have to be reasons that you get up in the morning and you want to live. Why do you want to live? What’s the point? What inspires you?…”Elon Musk
Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, design a life that adds value to those around you. A life that invites you to live beyond yourself, explore the world, and dive deep into humanity. Design a life that changes the world, one user experience at a time.