A two-part article on the power of “pauses to reflect,” with practical tips.

A two-part article in the Cooper Journal:
Part one: Why this matters

Part two: Four ways to add reflection to your process

What can the design process learn from the creative process?

In the summer of 2016, Fit got into conversation with Cooper about what the design process can learn from the creative process. Our conversation centered on the the importance of taking time to reflect. Reflection is a simple act that often gets pushed to the side by our perceived lack of time in the day and internal sense of urgency to push forward. We wrote a two-part article for the Cooper Journal.

In all aspects of our work, we have found a few simple ways to re-introduce reflection back into our way of working, it can have a dramatic affect on both the results and the team atmosphere. This first article describes the foundations of this idea and some of the outcomes we’ve seen. Here is an excerpt:

“Instead of jumping straight from analysis to synthesis and concepts, we took a long pause. We chose to take time to listen to our intuitive mind: that part of us that has been paying attention all along, but which cannot be heard in our usual business pace, and which does not have a loud insistent voice. It speaks slowly, in metaphor and image. When we listen to it, we access our deep knowing. That side of ourselves is great at noticing patterns, but it doesn’t have language. And it is much closer to our values, our beliefs, our sense of the big important stories. We simply need ways to help it connect what it feels to what it sees, and give it a chance to express itself.”

But how?

The second article, offers four ways to bring these practices to your own team:

“To find new approaches and methods, we’ve looked in places outside corporate design, where people include reflection in their work as a matter of course. We’ve borrowed from the arts, theatre, and writing, as well as wisdom traditions. There is a huge catalog of ways people do this, but we can offer four here that are easy to do in a corporate setting, easy to learn, and wonderfully effective.

 All four share the same initial steps:

  1. Set aside uninterrupted time (no colleagues, cell phones or cockatoos)
  2. Get still (you can read more about getting still here)
  3. Consider your situation and ask yourself (or your group) a question. We find questions like these to be at once specific and vague enough to let the good stuff out: “What is true here?” “What is really going on?” “What is possible?”

Then use some means to give expression to what shows up for you.”

Please visit the Cooper Journal to read more!