Thinking About Disfluency

March 25, 2018 · Post

When something becomes hard to think about people transfer the discomfort of the thought to the object of their thinking.

Derek Thompson, Hit Makers

This quote about Disfluency (and fluency) made me think. There is an actual, scientific reason why people don’t want to answer the whole “why do you like X” question. It will actually make you like X less.

I wonder if this explains why designers struggle with dismissing or disliking their work so often. We are trained to critique constantly.

  • Are we solving the problem?
  • Are we meeting the user’s needs?
  • Does this get the right job done?
  • Does this accomplish the goals of the client and their business or product?
  • Can this solution stay within budget?

It is crucial to our job to be able to both state why our work not only meets the assignment given to us, but that we also like the work we’ve produced. Is it actually possible to critique the work and whether it’s meeting those requirements without going through the process of discerning why you like it or not? And then inadvertently tranfser that discomfort of thinking critically to your work?

Speaking of which, I don’t like this post anymore.