How you gonna handle it?
One of the things that I have learned about my life’s “little disasters”, is that most of the time things are not as bad as the seem. You just have to wait it out. Let things play out.
I used to get upset when things didn’t go my way. I couldn’t help it. I’m the kind of person who needs to make sense of things and when they just don’t. I used to react. Sometimes irrationally with a dash of self-pity.
No longer. Now, I like to step back and watch things unfold. See if an angle does not present itself. Then when the time is right: make a move.
Pause for the cause
When you approach a design, whether it’s a logo or a 60 page booklet or a website – you are bound to bump into obstacles. Sometimes it comes in the form of client changes or something overlooked. You never know. That’s why they call it the unexpected. Deadlines rarely move when you need them to, and time is not your friend when there is an “X” on your calendar. Even still – Take a moment. It’s OK. Stop.
A whole lotta nothing
You’ll be amazed at what comes out of doing nothing at all. Let your mind levitate out of the labyrinth you have created and look at it from above. There is always a way out of it. Another angle.
Great design is about adaptation. Interpreting a problem through artistic and geometric tools. It’s not an exact science, but it does share many of the same principals as the sciences. Measurement and observation being two. Even Einstein stepped back to look at the black board from time to time.
Any fool can engage in battle.
Only a real warrior can avoid one.
– Morihei Ueshiba
1883 – 1969
I’ve encountered a couple of really big curve balls this past week. Some personal. Some professional. All important. What do they mean? Beats me. But I’m going to look for the angles. Observe the puzzle. Then make a calculated move. Like James Bond dropping an olive in a martini glass. You know, maintain the illusion that I got it all figured out.
Observe and then act
Whatever gets thrown at you this week, try to see it for what it really is. Don’t manufacture the worst case scenario in your mind. It serves against you to do so. Designers have an obligation to themselves to keep your mind clear in order to do your job well. In an age of social media tidal waves – that’s not easy.
Jane, stop this crazy thing!
Just remember. You can get off the ride anytime you like. Take a walk around the block. Come back to it. I guarantee you’ll see things differently. It’s never as bad as you think. Most of the time, the answer is staring you right in the face.