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Overcoming Procrastination: Tips for Surface Pattern Designers

August 31st, 2023 - Tag: Mindset

Procrastination—the thief of time—haunts everyone at some point in their life, including surface pattern designers. While it's comforting to know you're not alone, it's more important to tackle this productivity killer head-on. If you find yourself often delaying work on your latest design or postponing starting a new project, this blog post is for you.

Understanding Procrastination:

Before you can combat procrastination, it's crucial to understand it. Procrastination isn't just laziness; it's a complex interplay of fear, overwhelm, perfectionism, and lack of motivation or direction. For surface pattern designers, fear of critique or creating imperfect patterns can be significant contributors.

Tips to Overcome Procrastination:

  • Break Tasks Into Manageable Steps: Instead of telling yourself you need to complete a whole pattern design, focus on completing the initial sketch. Once that's done, move on to choosing color schemes, and so on. By breaking tasks down, they become less daunting.

  • Set Clear Deadlines: If you're not working on a client's timeline, create one for yourself. And stick to it! Consider using digital tools like Trello or Asana to set tasks and reminders.

  • Designate a Workspace: Do you have a place dedicated to your design work? Keeping your workspace tidy and having all your tools readily available can help reduce resistance to starting.

  • Embrace Imperfection: Understand that your first draft doesn't have to be perfect. Often, the most exquisite patterns evolve through a process of iteration - Read more about this tip.

  • Limit Distractions: Identify what commonly sidetracks you from work. If social media is your Achilles heel, consider apps like “Forest” or “Focus@Will” to deter you from checking your phone or computer.

  • Stay Inspired: Regularly update your mood board, watch design webinars, or stroll in nature. Fresh inspiration can act as a catalyst to get started.

  • Find an Accountability Partner: Share your goals with a fellow designer or friend and check in regularly. Knowing someone else is tracking your progress can be a significant motivator.

  • Setting Achievable Goals: Remember, quality often outweighs quantity. When managing tasks, especially in intricate fields like surface pattern design, it's essential to be realistic about your daily capacity. Overloading yourself can lead to burnout and diminished quality. Focus on prioritizing and accomplishing a few critical tasks well, rather than many in haste.

  • Visualize the End Result: Imagine the satisfaction of seeing your finished pattern on fabric, wallpaper, or other products. Keeping the end in mind can be a compelling motivator.

  • Start With Quick Wins: Begin with a task you know you can complete quickly. This immediate achievement can boost your confidence and momentum - Read more about this tip.

  • Embrace a Growth Mindset: Remember, every time you overcome procrastination, you're building a stronger, more disciplined version of yourself. So, the next time you're staring at a blank screen or sketchbook, remind yourself of the beautiful designs locked within you, waiting to be revealed. Your patterns have the power to bring joy, color, and style to the world, but first, you must conquer the hurdles in your mind - Read more about this tip.