In 2016, I had the design squiggle tattooed on the underside of my forearm. I did it for many reasons, most of all because I truly believe in the power of design to make the world a better place. For me, the design squiggle is a reminder that a lot of what happens in life and work is a matter of perception and attitude.
Projects can often feel hectic, chaotic and seemingly off-track, but when you zoom out and see the bigger picture, they're good problems to have. Although the design process might feel challenging at times, you've just got to keep working through the complexity because things do work out in the end. It's about persevering and collaboratively creating a way through.
I see the design squiggle as a reminder about how I can use design to create 'order' out of 'chaos', it's about how design has the potential to solve real problems and create better solutions. If design is going to have greater value to society and the planet – beyond pretty pixels – it needs to help solve the hard stuff – ’wicked’ problems.
The design process can feel chaotic and uncertain at times, and that's ok.
Remember the design squiggle.
Trust the process.
Choose to see challenges as an opportunity.
It may not feel this simple, but it's not supposed to be either.
The value design delivers is being able to understand difficult problems and work with different people to create better solutions.
The more design is equipped to work with the 'chaos', the more value it will be able to deliver.
If you’re interested in reading more about the design squiggle, and the story of the squiggle, you can find more information here.