Understanding people

Understanding people

Sometimes I cannot help but react to things that are happening in my life with writing about them. This post is exactly that. It is about people. It is about stories. It is about life. One side of the UX Design that fascinates me the most is the psychology in the widest possible sense. People and their life stories inspire me daily. Sometime I catch myself reading through 20 or so stories on the HONY (Humans of New York) page, spending way more time as intended. I’m not really a nosy person, but people’ stories fascinate me. It is interesting to see how other people perceive the world, how they think, what they feel.

I remember one time back in primary school. I took a bus to get home, and while looking through the window I had this weird thought… Are other people like me? Do they think on the inside? They look like ants… Do they all have their own little worlds? I guess this was the first time I realized we all have our inner worlds in which we live. Does that make us human? Does that separate us from animals?

This is not really a pure UX topic, but look at it as wide as possible, and you’ll see it really is. Choices that people make in their lives are always results of their own goals, expectations, wishes, dreams, experiences… I believe that understanding what makes us human is the key to understanding our users and UX is just that – understanding who we are designing for.

Beside that, getting a deeper understanding in a topic like this can help shift our focus from “me to they” mentality. My users are not me. Never forget that. We should never design for “me” unless we are designing for ourselves.

Listen, observe … design … listen and observe some more … learn … adapt.

So the other day I was on Facebook and one of my friends shared a video that touched me deeply, and before I knew it, half of the night was gone as I just sat there and watched the videos below. Take time and watch the videos. They are interesting to listen to, but they also have a design value. From the professional point of view, they might broaden your thinking and the way you see people. They might make you shift you thinking from me to them.

HUMAN

What is it that makes us human? Is it that we love, that we fight? That we laugh? Cry? Our curiosity? The quest for discovery? Driven by these questions, filmmaker and artist Yann Arthus-Bertrand spent three years collecting real-life stories from 2,000 women and men in 60 countries. Working with a dedicated team of translators, journalists and cameramen, Yann captures deeply personal and emotional accounts of topics that unite us all; struggles with poverty, war, homophobia, and the future of our planet mixed with moments of love and happiness.

[iframe id=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/vdb4XGVTHkE” align=”center” mode=”normal” autoplay=”no” grow=”yes”]
[iframe id=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/ShttAt5xtto” align=”center” mode=”normal” autoplay=”no” grow=”yes”]
[iframe id=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/w0653vsLSqE” align=”center” mode=”normal” autoplay=”no” grow=”yes”]

Until next time, stay curious,
Pia

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