Outside of all the positives of a career in is something central that any aspiring should be prepared for.

The #1 reason you should not get into UX design is that you can’t handle ambiguity.

Before getting into UX we learn that it’s flexible yet formulaic, creative yet data-driven, defined yet open to interpretation.

Even typing these I tend to agree. Maybe I’m too indoctrinated into UX dogma. But if these are true, it only emphasizes the point that we’re in an industry of ambiguity, where opposing ideas sit side by side.

This ambiguity doesn’t only play out when we overthink things (as we often do). It’s tangible in our daily work.

The messy reality of being a UX designer is that our days are full of choices, and very little is prescribed. Even when things are prescribed, there is always an opposing perspective to consider.

Nothing is sacred in UX. Everything is up for grabs.

This is why I love it. It makes it exciting. It means all of us individual designers have a role in shaping what the field is, and what it becomes. This is why I write, because the thoughts I have about this ambiguous field will drive me crazy if I don’t tell someone.

But it’s not for everyone. If you expect to start your first UX job going to work with a design process you picked up from a Medium post or a General Assembly boot camp, you’ll be disappointed.

Every day is negotiated. Every day you fight new battles. Every day you define who you want to be, and what value you bring to a piece of work.

If you prefer smooth sailing, UX may not be for you. But if you’ve got the drive to make a mark on something, it’s a damn fine place to do it.

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