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“Not everything is design. But design is about everything. So do yourself a favor: be ready for anything.”

Reading these words from a design review by Michael Bierut felt like my inner child had been given the keys to the biggest toy store in town. Like permission had been given to continue reading that page turning collection of short horror stories under my bed sheets with a flashlight. To never grow tired of pursuing, or let go of, the things I love. I’ve always felt a sense of uncertainty and difficulty when thinking about my future as a designer and the work I’ll (hopefully) be doing, because whenever the thought crosses my mind, so does the possibility of having to completely curtail myself of other passions and hobbies. I’ve dreaded the eventuality of losing the things that inspire me, the nerdy minutiae that ignite my desire to design, and more importantly, to create. Hobbies like video games, comic books, films and television shows, musical instruments, and other similar things I have written blog posts about, have a negative connotation. They are viewed as things that, after a certain age, should be grown out of.

Michael Bierut, in three short sentences, washed away all doubt and reaffirmed my already established belief: true passion cannot be contained. Trying to focus my mind on only one creative outlet is destined to give me tunnel vision and, worse, drown out potential inspirations. Reading about an eye-opening experience for an established graphic designer and his resolve has quickly become my biggest takeaway from writing for designers as a whole. Bierut’s few yet powerful words have an appropriate finality as the end of the semester approaches: design is about everything. So be ready for anything.

And if anything, I hope this helps anyone reading this feel less guilty about playing video games all night.