How many lives are you? I think this is one of the most interesting concept questions put forward in “Designing your life” by Bill Burnett. Growing up, I had a number of things I considered being; a medical doctor, an artist. As time went on, I narrowed my choices to what I felt was obtainable and good to me at the time. So, I decided to become a medical laboratory scientist. But somewhere at the back of my mind, I never completely abandoned the idea of doing some that would better reflect what I love to do, which is helping people and creating things. My current path of being an MBA student is leading me down the path of being able to help people through service and, potentially create solutions through business.
However, there is another life that I have oftentimes thought about living, even until now. That’s the life of an interior designer. From my teenage I’ve loved interior design. By interior design, here I refer to the design of living spaces. Not in the sense of being an architect of said space but breathing life into created spaces using colours and nifty décor items. Taking a space from drab to stunning? I’ve loved that idea. Growing up I had a series of games called ‘The Sims’. These games are simulation games where you create virtual characters and control their life choices and all. One of the more fun parts of playing was the design of the virtual houses. There were numerous customisation options available; colours, patterns, furniture! I would spend hours and days designing these spaces. It was around this time I realised how much I enjoyed this. Although the game was not a perfect picture of what’s obtainable in reality, it painted a pretty good picture and gave me some sort of an outlet for my design ideas. And yes, I still play these games! Thus, I began to wonder what it would really be like to live as a designer. Inasmuch as I’m currently toeing the path of business and entrepreneurship, I have not completely abandoned this idea. This has led to converse a lot with people are currently in the design space. In ‘Designing your life’, this is called Prototyping; something I was already doing without being aware. It highlights how the life and future you desire is already being lived by someone out there. So, I generally talk to designers and architects in order to get a feel of their process and design philosophy. I also get materials, books, get on online spaces dedicated to this sort of thing. And I genuinely find it fun.
If I was not doing what I’m doing and money was not an issue, design is definitely something that I would be doing. It would be my personal wild creative space full of countless possibilities. So currently I’m in that phase of asking questions and learning what it’s like from those who are currently in that space of life. The next part, which is ‘Try something out’, is something I haven’t fully decided how to navigate into yet. But the possibility remains. Perhaps, with the equipping I’m currently receiving as an MBA student, this possibility will become a reality. I love how Bill Burnett says “focus on what’s in front of you but have peripheral vision because it’s from the peripheral angles that the great unexpected opportunities present themselves”. Currently, what’s in front of me right now is my business training, and I’m giving myself fully to that. But at the same time, my field of vision is broadened.