I do my best to spend as much time away from my computer screen as I do in front of it. I love spending time outside, under the sun, tending my garden. I’ve grown a fondness for birds and have created a little urban oasis for all manner of birds and pollinators. Except for squirrels. I hate squirrels.
If I’m not outside, you may find me in my garage indulging in the joy I find tinkering around with my car, or working on a carpentry project. If I’m not in my garage, I may be in the kitchen baking sourdough and fermenting everything from cabbage to hot sauces.
I’ve dabbled in music, written the odd haiku, and spend a fair amount of time back in front of the computer screen writing fiction. Doing things which are not related to my career keep me sharp and refreshed when I do open up my laptop and get to the day job. I stay sharp because…
My career does not define me
I work to live, I do not live to work. My career exists as a means to a reasonable and comfortable life. This approach affords me space to focus on the things that truly matter: family, community, and personal wellness.All that to say, I take what I do seriously.
The Day My Career Changed
In 2015 I attended An Event Apart in Seattle. The very last lecture of the two day conference was from Eric Meyer. His talk was entitled Designing for Crisis" . In it, he ran us through, often in painful detail, his desperate experience of trying to navigate unknown hospitals and cities as his daughter had been medivaced away on the verge of death. He drove home the point that our users are rarely in the perfect happy state we tend to imagine when designing our sites and products. Often they are stressed, confused, and perhaps scared. We let them down when we don't clearly understand who and what our user's needs are.
This changed me. Eric’s talk made it abundantly clear how impactful good design can be, and inspires me every day.