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Designing your Life with White Space

Isn’t it funny how we’re so absorbed by the technology in our lives that we need new technology to keep us away from it? Apps that focus on digital wellness and screen time limits on our phones are becoming increasingly popular. When ‘Calm’ was declared as the App of the year by Apple in 2018, it became obvious that many of us are clearly overwhelmed by the noise around us. From the  devices we’re hooked onto to the busy lives we lead, there just seems to be no time to literally PAUSE.

Now, don’t get us wrong. Pausing need not necessarily mean doing nothing. Here’s where we’d like to draw out the concept of ‘White Space’ – something that great designers across the ages seem to have got right. In any design composition, white space is a necessity to maintain balance and focus. It’s like the silence between music. What would it mean to design our lives with white space? We’ve got one word to describe that – declutter. As the years go by, our plates only seem to get fuller with more responsibilities, greater networks, more opportunities and we forget that at the end of all of that, we still need stillness and solitude. Do not see these as abstract, superfluous concepts. They’re just as necessary as brushing your teeth in the morning!

When was the last time you engaged in something creative? You need not be an artist or a musician to get that innovation going. It could be something as simple as inventing your own exercise routine. When we start building aspects of simplicity into our lives, we free up space to let the magic happen. It is these blank spaces that push the creativity and wonder through us.

White space helps us to grow. Once you clear the unnecessary clutter that’s weighing you down, you’d notice that your natural curiosity spikes up. Ask yourself, do I really need to get back to checking my mail for the fifth time today? What happens if I limit that number to four?

Let’s begin with just one area in your life that you might want to dedicate more time to. Considering you have just 24 hours, you would have to transfer that time from another activity that is taking up too much space. Perhaps you want to learn a new instrument or a language or just go back indulging in calligraphy. That’s your white space right there! So, dive in.

This month, MAYU reads Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life by Bill Burnett & Dave Evans

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