Comfortable with the uncomfortable

“The old ways are no longer fit for purpose, but the new ways have yet to be created.”

Now that’s what we call a thought-provoking way to kick off International Design Day 2022.

For those who don’t know, International Design Day commemorates the founding of the International Council of Design (ICOD). And the theme for this year is ‘Suspended in Transition’.

Why? Because the ICOD believe we currently find ourselves in an ‘in-between, “liminal” space’. Translated into plain English, that’s a state of transition between one stage and the next. 

But hasn’t great design always occupied such a space? After all, design continually adapts and evolves, along with the world and everything in it. 

The whole process of design requires you to:

And it’s in that beautiful, ‘in-between’, liminal space where the oxygen exists for design and creativity to live and breathe.

It’s in that space where we as designers explore ideas, find solutions, and rethink things. 

Suspended in Transition

The ICOD’s ‘Suspended in Transition’ encourages designers to: 

Stepping out of our comfort zone – tick. That’s something we do every day. We call it ‘being comfortable with the uncomfortable’. And it’s something we passionately persuade others to do too. After all, if you don’t push the design and the creative boundaries, then you’re never going to help the brands and the people you’re working with push themselves forward. 

And yes, we’re encouraged to accept the moments of partial knowing, not defining, and not designing – yet. 

We’ll also happily continue to reflect from a place of discomfort and flux.

Because that’s the really valuable time for us – the time for exploration and inspiration. The time for dreaming up all our greatest ideas. And the time for making progress.

We’ll not just commit to doing these things today. We’ll commit to doing exactly the same again tomorrow, and the next day, and the next. Because we totally, utterly and absolutely love great design. And we believe in the power it has to change the world – for the better.

Happy International Design Day.

Related articles

World Book Day
Inspirational stories

To celebrate World Book Day, members of our team have been telling us about the books and stories that have inspired them.

The making of you

Degree show done. Now what? It’s time to venture into the world of work. What advice does our director Keith Noble have for the latest crop of design graduates?

Sea water packaging using beer bottles
‘Best in show’ – next gen’ designers shine

When the universities of Oldham, Bolton and Central Lancashire asked us to set another round of creative design briefs to inspire final years students this year, we were happy to oblige.