I need a break

It’s almost one year since I “broke down” and I have been struggling ever since. A good week is always followed by two or three bad ones. It’s exhausting. So I decided to take a break. Or at least try. Me and my family depend on my full-time job so I can’t just stop working. But I need to take a pause and find a new balance. And that means stopping the work on my personal projects for a while.

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Why I decided to sell my book on Lulu.com

Going to a bookshop is a magical experience. Book prices are even higher there, I know, but there’s a magical feeling when you walk out with a new book in your hands. I can recollect most of such moments from the past, the one when I bought Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport in Edinburgh is the most memorable. It turned out to be the last book that I bought there before moving back to Slovenia so it’s a bittersweet memory. That’s what makes it even more special. Unlike an eBook, a physical book is an object that can be admired. It’s tangible, you open it up and it has a gentle smell no matter if it’s new or old. The smell changes as the book ages, but it’s always a lovely smell.

Why I don’t do Black Friday sales

Black Friday is often referred to as the “consumerism holiday” and I can’t help myself but this sounds so wrong to me. The level of consumerism that we got to in the world today is absurd. Maybe I think that because of my minimalist mentality and lifestyle. Minimalism is something that has attracted me for years now and it became a fundamental part of my life. This doesn’t mean that I never buy anything on Black Friday sales, I do. But it’s usually something that I have been thinking about buying for a while. When you adopt the minimalist mentality, a buying decision is never an impulsive one. I think 10 times whether I really need something before I buy it. This is the complete opposite of what the whole Black Friday thing promotes and what it means to most people.

Would you do your job for free?

I remember telling this to the CEO of the first company that hired me as a full-time UX designer: “thanks for the raise but it really isn’t about money for me. If I could, I’d do this for free.” They were really happy with my performance so they gave me a raise just a couple of months after I started working there. Until then, I had a full-time, non-designer job which I hated and I freelanced doing design work on the side. Being able to do it full-time literally was a dream come true.

Open-plan offices are the sweatshops of the West

Six years ago, I joined a tiny startup and it was the first time I experienced an open-plan office. There were only three other people working with me in that office and we really got along. We went to lunch together, took walks together, hung out in our free time and built a friendly relationship based on trust. My journey would then take me forward to London where I’d end up working for other, larger startups. Little did I know, that the tiny Luxembourgish company would be the only positive onsite working environment that I’d get to experience in my career.

My favourite books of 2018

Similarly to last year’s favourite books of 2017, I wanted to write a quick blog post about some of my favourite books that I read in 2018. Out of the 19 that I managed to read (exactly the same number as in 2017), here are my top 5. Keep in mind these are books I read in 2018, not necessarily released in 2018 and they’re not sorted in any particular order.

Two questions we ask designers in job interviews

We won’t ask you how many golf balls fit in a bus or how many times a day a clock’s hands overlap – nothing like what Google became famous for. While there’s some value in seeing how candidates react to curve-ball questions, they don’t really add much to a 45-minute interview. We also won’t ask you to attend an all-day session with a series of interviewers.

Buzz junkie

It’s early in the morning, probably around 7 because it’s still quite dark outside. I’m reading a book and trying to relax a bit before another busy day, my phone is resting on the table not too far away from me, but still out of reach. The book is about stoicism and a lot of topics in it are about having control over our lives.