What keeps you up at night?
It’s kind of an egotistical answer, but ultimately at the end of the day I want to have a large impact on the world. I think for different people that is having kids or doing other things. For me, I want my work to be my mark, to a certain extent. The fear I have is that ultimately I would look back in 20 years from now and see a career that’s—mediocre isn’t the right word, actually I think mediocre is the right word, in that it’s just on par. What scares me is that I will look back and my career and my work wasn’t something that I could be really, really proud of, and feel like had an impact. What’s really interesting is at Epicurrence you’re surrounded by people that have had that sort of impact, or at least you perceive that, and it’s just interesting being within this group of people.
It can be a sort of heavy thing, for me at least. Sometimes I’ll have that fear and have a hard time getting up in the morning because it’s so dominating, but I think most of the time it’s fairly motivating. It pushes me to do something new and progress. Over my career I’ve developed a lot because I’m always asking the question of “What do I want to be doing?” or “How do I have that impact?”. I think that’s a really good thing.
It’s so funny. It’s like Sisyphus—you’re pushing a stone up. I’m always trying to move forward, and almost every day you’re stepping back and the stone falls back.
Jeff Smith is Product Designer at Facebook, based in San Francisco.
This quote was taken from epidsode 107 of the Design Details podcast.