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Design Untangled | A UX & design podcast in plain English

Chris Mears & Carla Lindarte

UX has a usability problem. Chris and Carla are on hand to help you navigate through the jargon, user flows and mind maps so you can concentrate on designing great things for users. **Disclaimer** The views on this podcast are ours and don’t represent the views of any former or current employers or clients.

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Receipts eh? Annoying bits of paper you get when you shop that often just go in the bin – an environmental problem that London startup Flux is trying to solve by integrating receipts with your bank.

Chris speaks to Filippo Corti, Product Designer at Flux to learn how he designs a product that lives within another product.

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Chris and Carla chat about burnout – the state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by stress, which is a growing problem in the whole digital space.

Designers themselves, and now even agencies and consultancies are aware of the stress factors, such as modern life’s pace, peer pressure, never having the time to fully detach from work or not having some quiet time cause our mental health to suffer.

Fortunately we have some ideas on how you can spot if you’re getting burnt out, and a few things you can try to help improve your physical and mental wellbeing at work.

Contractor’s concern – as a contractor, you get paid by the day. Still, it’s important to get some time off to recharge, and while doing so, don’t think about the money you’re not earning at the moment.

Work – life balance – while there is nothing wrong with participating in social events after work with your peers, it’s important to separate work from life, and have your social life not completely tied to your work environment.

When your job doesn’t fulfil you – do something on the side that you care about. To feel like you’re making some change and positive in the world even if it’s not your main job, is a great motivation booster.

Getting lost in the agile project approach – you can find yourself getting stuck to solve a particular design issue, or not experimenting with new ideas, or even feel being distanced from the people that you’re designing for. This can happen in case of not enough/lack of user research. Take a step back from time to time and look at the big picture – don’t forget what you’re aiming to accomplish. Take the time to understand the problem, the user, plan your project, and put your thoughts into that specific design.

Managing expectations – of your own and others’. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. This applies if you’re trying to demonstrate you’re good as a woman in the digital world, or you’re managing a project with junior people with a tight project time frame. If you feel you can not function at your best, it’s not the end of the world to change your situation or mindset and leave that pressure behind. Watch your internal conversation with yourself, because many times the pressure that exists is created by your own perception of yourself.

Give yourself time – there are many things from which you can choose from to disconnect your mind from design issues such as doing yoga, exercising, listening to music, take on hobbies or meditation – doing something you love. You can train yourself to create that space for your mind to breath, and find those things that make yourself happy outside of work. Have and make the time for switching off – do things that you like. Life is more important than a wireframe! And remember you’re not alone. You can always ask tips and help from others in the community.

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The D&AD New Blood awards are for students, grads, and aspiring creatives between 18 and 24.

Real briefs, set by real clients, judged by top creatives.

Carla interviews two fellow judges from the DNDA awards – Sila Nur Isik and Daniel Hirschmann.

They discuss new technology trends, advice for young designers and recommendations for the next generation of entrants.

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