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The Future Is Simple

Honesty is simple – lies are complex and messy. Honest writing and design always trumps contrived and dishonest efforts.

A simple icon or symbol can communicate more to a viewer than a paragraph of words.

A clean, simple and uncluttered room is a much more enjoyable space to occupy than a messy area.

The best ideas are always the simplest. In fact this simplicity often leads to these ideas being laughed at initially and often not followed through.

I find it funny that the majority of products and gizmos that are sold to us promising to make our life simpler actually make it more complicated. Emails buzzing on your phone while on your lunch break, rapid fire text messages, mashing the touch keyboard on your GPS when driving instead of memorising a route. The simple thing to do is turn your phone off when you get home from work or when you don’t want to be interrupted, not downloading some Do Not Disturb app. It seems to be a vicious cycle – create more tools to simplify the overload of tools we already use.

Ironically, achieving simplicity can be very complicated in terms of design and problem solving. To de-clutter and organise, to bring systems and order to chaos is always a decent undertaking but when done right it looks effortless.

When we help businesses with branding projects, we try to drill down through all the big talk, the verbose company overviews and ‘About Us’ sections to find out what is the simple essence of a business and their offering – what is the one message you would communicate about your business to a new customer if you only had one sentence. This one sentence should be more about the customer than yourself – simple.

We should all strive to make things simple because simplicity is for everyone. If you make something simple for another person it shows you care about their experience and time.

Nature is simple. When spending large amounts of time in nature we notice and appreciate the small things, the sound of waves crashing and leaves rustling in the breeze, watching flames lick and spit across wooden logs and the simple brilliance of stars dazzling above our heads in the dark sky.

For me the ultimate connection with simplicity comes on the days I camp and fish for trout on the Howqua River in Central Victoria. Stripped of everything but the necessities to exist, it is a liberating feeling to live simply for a short period of time while regaining some much needed balance and perspective. Your mind thanks you with clarity, creativity and ideas.

What is holding you back that could be simpler?

– Luke Schoknecht