This letter was published in the 2017 Hopscotch Design Festival Guide.
We’re living in an unprecedented era of complexity and uncertainty. It feels overwhelming, unsettling, and exhausting.
It’s a challenging time.
On any given day, you can find yourself riding a roller coaster of feelings. Confident one moment and then not knowing what will happen next, unsure where things will end up.
When we look out and see everything that’s happening, we have a choice:
We can believe the world is unchangeable. That we don’t have any power. That our voice won’t make a difference. We can say, “That’s the way it is” and “I don’t know how to help.” We can choose to hide.
Or, we can believe the world is changeable. That we have the courage to lean into the discomfort and uncertainty. We can put our hand up and say, “I believe things can be different and I’ll figure out how to do something about it.” We can choose to act with possibility.
The truth is, choosing to act with possibility is the hard part. It can be easier to forget the potential we each have—the gifts we have to share with the world. It can be easier to feel like there’s nothing we can do—that it’s hopeless. It can be easier to criticize and judge—rather than seeing our own responsibility to make a positive change. It can be easier to stay safe—to keep doing what we’re doing and not risk anything.
Acting with possibility means showing up, embracing discomfort, acknowledging fears, and being vulnerable.
It can feel scary. It can also feel exciting, motivating, and inspiring to believe in creating change.
Hopscotch Design Festival is designed to be a place of possibility. It’s intended to give you space to dream, to remember your potential, and figure out how you want to make your difference. It’s intended to help you find the courage and strength to keep doing the hard parts.
Design gives us all the power to shape the world around us with intent rather than by default. Design gives us the courage to face our fears and navigate the uncertain. Design gives us the ability to imagine the world as we wish it were.
More than ever we need smart, equitable, and just solutions for today’s most pressing challenges. Over the next two days, we’ll push the edges of what’s possible, fuel our creativity, and design the future together.
Thank you for being a part of Hopscotch Design Festival, for choosing possibility, and for making a difference. Thank you for taking responsibility for a future you believe in.
With great respect,