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We have been talking and thinking a lot lately about careers and jobs and opportunities. Call it a nearing 40 thing. What is it that I want to be doing? What is my calling? I like to use the word calling because it seems to serve a higher purpose than simply being someone who designs for a living. It hints at a life that is dedicated to making things more beautiful and by that virtue better. Design must  be a life. It should dictate how you are and who you are, what you buy and what you choose to see.  It must get into the nooks and crannies of your very being and take over the way you think , the way you dream, the way you hope. It must demand that you do everything with the intent to improve living. It should make  pretty, add fun and exude a joie de vivre for whatever is it that you are doing , thinking and surrounding yourself with.

Exactly 89 days ago, (and I know this because of this fun app I have called Days Since. I also know I have been married to k for 3,247 days and that the kids are 2,576 and 1,373 days old respectively!) I joined a fitness and wellness program with the promise to change the way I feel (and also look to some measure). It is a program designed to feel and live your best. It includes high intensity workouts, a wonderful (if chatty) support group of similarly goaled women and a plan to help you cut out the unnecessaries. And while the plan literally meant unnecessary unhealthy food, I realized that in the last year I had accumulated a lot of unnecessary negative energy, unwanted thoughts and feelings that moving froward, I did not want as part of my life. I wanted brilliance, positivity, creativity and design as part of my existence.

I have loved every minute of the last 89 days. Even the excruciating (yet oddly fulfilling) aches and pains. Having never been a workout person, I have fallen in love with pushing myself to a point when it shakes with the exertion of  pure physical exertion. I have loved feeling the difference in both how I look and feel, a duo that were simply not going together in the last few years. I either looked good or felt good and until there is a kind of relationship there, it isn’t going to last. Atleast not for me.  I have enjoyed putting my meals together, the life designer in me kicking in with full verve. I have loved designing my plan, bringing in my washi team, to put up do’sand don’ts on the kitchen wall. I have really truly responded to my calling here, been at my best designing this change in my life to get rid of the bad and replace it what works, looks and feels good.

The late great Massimo Vignelli said, “The life of a designer is a life of fight against the ugliness”. That ugliness can come in the shape of conflict around you, bad clients, comic sans, friends who aren’t there, family that doesn’t understand, systems that work and simply awful looking design and it is upto us to fight fight fight…till the world is better designed. Or atleast we are.



The Lily Diaries – tips on staying moisturized.

Turn around and finding lily smearing my favourite cream all over herself liberally.
Me: what do you think you are doing???
Lily: Puttin’ cweam!
Me in utter exasperation: Kaisee HO tum Leila!!
Lily: Sho shoft, Mama.