It’s always been said that life is what we make it, and so if we want to live our best life we will need to design the life we want ourselves rather than just live by default or live by someone else’s plan or expectations. But what exactly does that even mean?…….
Design thinking is a used for creative problem solving. It’s a human-centered approach to innovation and I am excited to combine it with my other frameworks and disciplines to level-up the way that we live our life by helping us to turn our ideas into real tangible action.
It’s a solution-focused approached where we look forward into the realm of possibilities rather than always looking at and getting bogged down in the drawbacks or struggles. There still however needs to be an understanding of what problems or obstacles are keeping us stuck and getting in the way of us living our best life so that we can generate lots and lots of ideas about how to overcome these obstacles and experiment to see what works. Sometimes our solutions may be obvious, but sometimes they are not, and sometimes the right solution is something that we never thought we would do.
Design thinking has been applied to many different areas and researchers and designers have even used design thinking and tools to explore ways in which they can plan out and build workplaces and public spaces that promote wellbeing. But what if we could use design thinking and tools another way; a way to creatively problem solve what’s not working for us in our lives so that we can live the life we want to live? Use it to create meaningful experiences, increase positive emotions, and pursue connections with people that enhance a sense of purpose and belonging. It can help us to foster change beyond our imagination. I don’t know about you, but I find that incredibly exciting!
In addition to my occupational therapy and psychotherapy background I have explored ways in which design thinking can give us practical, creative and personalised results to help us to design and live our life how we’ve always dreamed:
Designing is always about creating something actionable or that’s meeting a need. From a purely design perspective for example, chairs were designed to give us somewhere to sit and now come in all shapes and sizes, styles and varying degrees of comfortability to meet the need of different contexts. However, from a life design perspective, if we are working hard and feeling like we are burning out we might take a closer look at how balanced your range of pursuits are. Are you doing all work and no play? Are you taking on far too much that you are just exhausted? Are they nourishing or depleting? Are they aligned with your values and what you consider important in your life? This will allow us to creatively explore ways to find space for other meaningful activities to help balance out your time and effectively design a life that you not only want but enjoy.
Designing our life is not just another wish list of what we would like in our life, it’s tangible, creative steps and actions for us living the life we want and allowing us to break free from what keeps us stuck, unhappy and disconnected.
Being creative helps us to be innovative and to think outside the square. It helps us to see problems differently and generate ideas that we wouldn’t have thought of through a regular life lens and questioning. It allows us to explore possibilities with curiosity, logic and innovation. Many people that I chat to state that they aren’t creative, however I believe that we are all innately creative beings and sometimes just lose touch with this side of ourselves. Creativity is not just about artistic pursuits like painting and singing, it can also be about coming up with different ways to solve a particular problem. When we do something differently to everyone else or how it’s ‘normally’ done, that is being creative. Embrace your inner creativity.
The aim of designing is to create or tailor a products/service/behaviour etc. to meet a specific need or purpose. Designing your life is no different. It is not a cookie cutter or cookbook approach as no two people or their lives are the same so how can we expect to apply the same actions to achieve the same results. Life design is about identifying, and modifying techniques, methods and ideas to create change for an individual that’s in line with their vision and values for their unique life.
I believe that when we intentionally design our own lives to bring our best self to the world we not only change our own life for the better by allowing ourselves to live on purpose but we spread positive ripples back out into the world as we are sharing our true, authentic self and gifts with the world. We can also bounce back better than before from adversity and leave a legacy we would previously only dream of.
If you would like to work with me to design your ideal life, contact me today.