Ego and the UX Designer: Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself

A fundamental truth: you're more than your job.

Ego and the UX Designer: Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself
Photo by UX Indonesia / Unsplash

Not every UX designer is on the same page, but I've noticed a common theme among some.

You see, some folks make it sound like we're the kings and queens of the company, the centre of the universe.

That we're some untapped personification of knowledge, and that if they'd just listen to us, we'd make user journeys that make people squeal with pleasure.

That's bad logic, because no matter how much some UXers believe it, it's simply untrue.

UX professionals who believe that logic are, quite frankly, probably insufferable assholes that should be nowhere near a team.

"Leave your ego at the door every morning, and just do some truly great work. Few things will make you feel better than a job brilliantly done. " – Robin S. Sharma.

I feel like a lot of the challenges UX designers encounter often stem from this "god complex" mindset.

Snobbery, essentially.

Then there are UX designers who keep their egos in check. They go to work, face reasonable deadlines, and have a say in things.

They discuss, they argue, and they get stuff done well. But after everything is said and done, they're part of a team.

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The best UX designers don't stroll into the office with a massive ego. If someone disagrees with them, they don't take it as a personal attack.

If the higher-ups decide to go with a questionable idea, they make sure they've got some digital paper trail to cover themselves.

I get it – there are UX professionals out there facing abuse, getting ignored, and handed crazy requests.

Sometimes this is part of the job, sometimes it isn't. It's up to you to decide what is and what isn't acceptable.

I wish I could paint a pretty picture for everyone, but let's face it, some jobs suck.

Don't stick around because you think job hunting is worse. Actively seek like your life, or your sushi habit, depends on it.

Now, here's my take – I never dreamed of being some big shot.

I have no visions of being a conference rockstar or writing bestsellers. My brain is all about finding something I enjoy and cruising my way to retirement, with a bit of planning for the golden years

For those of you feeling miserable in bad environments, my advice is simple: keep looking for something better. But if you're unhappy because you had unrealistic expectations about this job, maybe it's time to see it as just that – a job.

Take a step back, and realise there's more to life than your career.