Since it’s the start of the new year, I’m hearing a lot of people talking about inspiration and what you can do to be successful. One thing I keep hearing time and again is “Focus on one thing and do it well.” I completely disagree, at least from the perceived perspective of it.
The way most people word this, other people will assume that they should just choose one thing in their life and only focus on that throughout their life. This is simply absurd. You’re going to have a very monotonous and boring life if you do this because diversity is the spice of life.
Don’t get me wrong though, I agree with what is being said on a fundamental level but it needs to be taken into context within the bigger picture. Yes by all means, when working in the moment, work on one thing and do it well. However, when working within your long view, ensure that each thing you do can be supported by, connected to, and built upon by the other things that you do. This is how design works and how complex self-surviving ecosystems are created. It is small little actions or endeavours, that when connected to each other, create something of wondrous beauty.
As an example of this, I always have a myriad of thoughts on my plate that would seem to lead my life into radically different directions. However, the more I understand myself, the more I’m seeing that these things below the surface are actually connected quite closely to each other. Therefore, I’m figuring out ways to ensure connectivity between these things from a strategic view before I dive too deep into a singular project from a tactical view. So possibly, just possibly, my ongoing research on creating my own content management system directly relates to my interest in relaying information (i.e. visual maps) in radical new ways. And that in turn relates to creating radical visual systems that would allow people to articulate who they are and where they are going within their lives which would in turn allow them to represent themselves professionally in ways that make CVs or resumes look like an archaic joke. So again, one thing builds upon and is utilized by the next which empowers and weaves the entire ecosystem or tapestry of the vision.