For all that the brown boy and I are friends with each other, we fight enough. Here’s a hurriedly drawn page from one of 2018’s journals, when I was trying to figure out our new toaster…and he said something especially mean.
[Transcript: Breakfast for busy parents like us is usually hurried. A cup of coffee while prepping the son for school, a bowl of oats while packing my lunchbox. Today we sat down to eat figs and oranges and it was so relaxing. And it seemed like time stopped for a while peeling the fruit. The zest sparkling in the morning light. The smell of oranges in the air.] Title: Mary Lamb.
I thought I was good with words, but there’s always so much to learn. If you’re in a position of influence, your vocabulary, your tone and your attitude can have such a ripple effect.
Title: Marshall McLuhan
My survival and stress relief strategy has always been through drawing.
Anteater: Just writing the word won’t make them disappear, you know…
When I was younger I usually drew everyday, but since becoming a parent it’s every other day, and always on weekends. Looking back at all my published and unpublished work I always feel grateful for this gift.
“Everyday do something that gives to you.”Yours truly
Every other month there’s a week when all I’m doing is working. Maybe you have a week or two like that as well. Working, commuting, working, and then suddenly you look up and day has turned to night.
Today the brown boy and I celebrate fifteen years of being married. I am incredibly proud of this milestone, but the entire credit goes to him – who knew patience could last that long?
He’s put up with my weirdness, taken full responsibility of being the parent to our child
…all for the pleasure being in this blog!
He’s the Bergman to my Ullman,
my sense of home and my ends of days:
This marriage may have been a mistake but I would make it again to live through all these years with this brown boy again.
And here’s the drawing that I made after our first anniversary: We had sat and watched the waves in Bandstand.
[I first read this book Making ideas happen: Overcoming the obstacles between vision and reality in 2013, and since then this book has been my daily guide, often standing in as a coach for my day job. Scott wrote this book while working at Behance: “I realized that creative professionals are the most disorganized community on the planet! But they are ultimately responsible for <so many things> that bring meaning to our lives…
I saw not only an opportunity but also a responsibility to help them overcome the obstacles to make them happen
…as such I committed my professional life to organizing the creative world.” The book is guidance and wisdom on every page, but here are three of the ideas that resonated with me:
Capitalize on healthy conflict: Use disagreements to foster valuable insights that would otherwise be inaccessible. Make your creative team resilient to advocate for their perspectives while respectfully considering that of others, until breakthroughs are revealed.
Short-circuiting the rewards system: Achieving a creative vision also demands a long term focus and sustaining your energy for the long term. Scott’s recommendation is to unplug yourself from the short term reward system and the desire to the validated in the long term.
Seldom is anything accomplished alone: One idea that stood out for me was that of Dreamers, Doers and Incrementalists. Find out which one you are, and then find the right partners. Serendipity comes from differences.]
A book worth reading if you’re a senior designer or in a creative leadership role, or a design entrepreneur; whether in product or services or consulting – you’ll find it useful. Follow up with the more recent book The Messy Middle, another useful companion for building resilience, staying inspired and bringing the best of your creative self to the “hardest and most crucial part” of any project.
By now everyone knows that the anteater is my imaginary friend.
With a friend like him, do I even need a shrink?
Sometimes words don’t mean anything at all.