Critical Thinking is a System

Design systems are great. They organize chunks of your design elements so UX designers may solve problems faster with their team. My current instructor Joel emphasizes that nobody hires a designer for strictly knowing how to push pixels and choose colors. Designers, at least the talented ones, are hired because they’re able to solve complex problems efficiently while leaving others able to replicate the method. I somewhat agree. The ability to solve problems is crucial in any job or lifestyle. If a person can’t solve problems then they’re an anxious tree. Yes, a tree.

“If you don’t like where you are, change it. You’re not a tree.” — Jim Rohn

The fact that this is a quote means there are people who struggle to find solutions. Trust me, I’ve been there. Not knowing how to solve problems is a challenging circumstance, though if there is a logical breakdown of said problem then there’s bound to be a solution.

Critical thinking is a valuable skill. Imagine giving up when you can’t find a spoon to eat your sorbet! You’d be useless everywhere. I was in once offered to join a startup based on vested interest and the founder asked me to determine my terms. I had no clue what to do. So I decided to go for a walk.

After the walk I grabbed my trusted notebook and began to mind map the criteria that aligned with my needs. I didn’t know much about vested anything, so I did some research. After a few hours of dilly dallying on various investment and legal sites, I felt I could solve this challenge (problem; I much prefer to refer to problems as challenges because it feels more manageable. I got this from David J. Shwartz’s The Magic of Thinking Big).

I ended up working with the guy, but didn’t stay long due to trust issues. And why work with someone you don’t even trust! There are many opportunities out there, we just have to be aware.

All in all, it’s important to identify your thought patterns and make sense of them through critical thinking exercises such as mind mapping, list making, or even discussing with a friend (be aware of how you speak of the challenge you’re trying to solve, this will work well). We’ll talk soon!

Till next time, 
yours forever, Pedro.

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