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Do You Think Like a Designer? 5 Traits That Say You Do!

by | Sep 12, 2023 | Mindset | 0 comments

This article unravels the intricate tapestry of a designer’s mindset, emphasizing that design is much more than mere visuals—it’s a profound way of perceiving, understanding, and engaging with the world. By illuminating five core traits, from the deep-seated empathy that fuels user-centric creations to the relentless grit that drives perfection, the piece underscores the universality of design thinking. It sheds light on the interconnected nature of design with various aspects of life and encourages readers to introspect and recognize these attributes within themselves. Beyond a profession, the article positions design as a way of life, revealing that many may already possess the foundational qualities of a designer, even outside the confines of the studio.

Design isn’t just about colors, shapes, and patterns. It’s an intricate blend of perception, empathy, and problem-solving. Whether you’re in the realm of design or not, you might be surprised by how closely your mindset aligns with a designer’s. Let’s dive into five traits, often associated with designers, that you might find within yourself.

1. Empathy: Connecting with Emotions

Have you ever found yourself so deeply resonating with someone’s emotions that you could almost feel what they were experiencing? Maybe a friend shared a poignant story, and you felt the depth of their joy or sorrow as if it were your own. Designers thrive on this quality of empathy. It enables us to design products and solutions tailored to people’s real feelings and needs. When designers talk about creating user-centric designs, they’re drawing from this well of empathy to ensure users feel understood and catered to.

2. Systems Thinking: Seeing the Bigger Picture

Imagine changing a tiny aspect of your daily routine, like waking up 30 minutes earlier. This small shift could transform the rest of your day, couldn’t it? You might be more productive, catch an earlier train, or simply have more time for a morning ritual. Systems thinking is about recognizing these interconnections. Designers are ever-conscious of how a minute change in one area can cascade effects through the entire system, whether it’s a product, service, or even a digital interface.

3. Grit: Unyielding Perseverance

We’ve all faced moments when giving up seemed like the easier route, whether it was a complex project, a fitness goal, or even a personal passion. But remember when you chose to push through? That sheer determination and resilience are what we call grit. In the design world, this translates to hours of iterations, tackling feedback, and persisting until the design not just meets but exceeds expectations.

4. Curiosity: The Constant Quest

Recall a moment when a simple fact or a snippet caught your attention, and the next thing you knew, you were deep into research, trying to learn everything about it. This insatiable curiosity is a designer’s daily companion. We’re driven to know the ‘why’ behind choices, always probing, exploring, and striving to understand deeper.

5. Openness: Embracing Novelty

Have there been times when you’ve embraced a fresh perspective, even if it seemed unconventional? Or when you stepped out of your comfort zone to try something entirely new? This openness to change, to novel ideas, and uncharted territories is a hallmark of a designer. It allows us to approach challenges with a fresh lens and innovate beyond the ordinary.


So, if you’ve found yourself nodding along, recognizing these traits within you, perhaps there’s a hint of a designer in your mindset. These qualities remind us that design isn’t merely about visuals. It’s a profound way of perceiving, understanding, and interacting with the world around us.

Whether you’re contemplating a career in design, looking to collaborate with designers, or just curious about the way designers think, these insights are a testament to the intricate blend of art and empathy, logic and creativity that design encapsulates.

Remember, in the vast tapestry of professions and skills, design is but one thread, yet it intertwines with so many others. And maybe, just maybe, it intertwines a bit with yours too.