Who do you think of when you hear the word “successful”? “The first answer to any question isn’t much fun because it’s just automatic. What’s the first painting that comes to mind? Mona Lisa. Name a genius. Einstein. Who’s a composer? Mozart. “This is the subject of the book Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. There’s the instant, unconscious, automatic thinking and then there’s the slower, conscious, rational, deliberate thinking. I’m really, really into the slower thinking, breaking my automatic responses to the things in my life and slowly thinking through a more deliberate response instead. Then for the things in life where an automatic response is useful, I can create a new one consciously.

Derek Sivers in Tools of Titans by Tim Ferriss. Tim continues; “This is genius. Ricardo Semler, CEO and majority owner of the Brazil-based Semco Partners, practices asking “Why?” three times. This is true when questioning his own motives, or when tackling big projects. The rationale is identical to Derek’s.”

Jony Ive, in a rare public speaking engagement; Jony’s design inspiration comes from thinking about the world and asking, “Why?” a lot. Frustration and the desire to make things better end up being the factors that can turn all of the questions and “whys” into tangible products.

Asking ‘Why’ is essential for all designers, perhaps especially UX-Designers.


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