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I subscribe to an electronic newsletter published by Before & After — a company that helps individuals and organizations design cool stuff.  What I enjoy about the information Before & After provides are the questions. Who is this for? Why? What if? Doesn’t it make more of an impact when . . . ?

And although I am not a graphic artist, I help many clients think creatively. Picture how things could be. Expand possibilities. Erase boundaries. Design a better life.

Even if you don’t consider yourself a creative creature, you are definitely a designer.

Sure, you may not be handy with the hammer or able to decorate with decoupage. You may have a black thumb and paint may be your enemy. But all other projects aside, you are responsible for designing your life. You select the paths and the projects, make the friends and the enemies.

Each choice you make limits options and expand possibilities.

I was reminded of this while reading an article from Before & After on Possibilities by John McWade:

One of the thrills of youth is that everything is possible. At 18, you can attend any school, follow any profession, travel anywhere, marry anyone or no one. There are practical restrictions but no conceptual ones. The freedom is exhilarating!

As you make choices, the possibilities diminish. Choose one school and you eliminate a thousand others. Marry one girl, and you forsake all others. Travel here, and you can’t afford there.

Find a profession, and it becomes what you do. The better you get, the more distant alternative professions become. There is some irony in this. As you build your life, decision by decision, the possibilities of youth go away.

For some, this is a good thing. Possibilities are unsettling. Certainty, predictability, routine create a comfort zone. Life feels secure. These people become product reviewers.

But this is not you.

You have a life.

When was the last time you thought about what your life could be? Took time to create, design, build the framework for a future you envisioned?

Was it in High school? During College graduation? While planning your wedding?

Do you even remember?

Don’t allow the predictability of your life lull you into a false sense of security. Don’t become a product reviewer — simply commenting on life as it passes you by.  Become a product creator — take an active role in writing the story of your tomorrow [McWade].

Whatever you are, make the decision to design a life you love!

Deanna

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