Don’t fear flying


“What could possibly go wrong?” A question I remember well. I guess everyone has a childhood memory where those words were used before taking action. My youthful action was playing Superman, with a blanket tied around my neck and jumping down a flight of stairs.

Yes, I did. No, it didn’t end well.

This was a very memorable experience. Life experiences implant fear in our minds. As we become adults that fear grows into fear of being judged by others, a low tolerance for uncertainty, and anxiety about material losses.

Our leap before you think attitude is gone. We learn to fear failure for mostly good reasons.

But, if you don’t jump you can’t fly.

What to do?

Luckily, I’ve learned a process that helps me fly without a blanket tied to my neck. I now can work with my hopes and dreams to design the direction of my journey.

Designers are trained to work with fear and uncertainty while innovating. Our education helps tame that fear. We practice our Methodology through group.

During the critiques the focus is on Design methodology, the process. This group, singular focus builds trust in that process. Trust in your actions and work minimizes the focus on fear. It promotes collaboration with fear not avoidance.

This focus is common with Creative processes and “releases within them the freedom to rebuild.” as author J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter, stated. The focus built the resilience Rowling’s needed when she was penniless and without a publisher.

A healthy collaboration with fear is important to minimize our natural, innate response to avoid harm. Our brains are designed to move us away from danger and to seek pleasure. Survival instinct always wins. So, it’s no surprise that a fear of failure is a common inhibitor of innovation. I know I can’t actually fly — but I still want to find a way to accomplish my goals.

Resilience is key. Resilience in our ability to address fear and drive change by engaging with and influencing the designed systems we inhabit.

A resilient person is able to prepare for and recover quickly from setbacks by designing systems, resources, collaborating and creating ways around restrictions and obstacles.

Practicing Design Methodology builds resilience. Design Methodology is my superpower.

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