Jon Kolko on How Personal Priorities Change With Age

In Chapter 4 of 21 in his 2012 Capture Your Flag interview, design educator Jon Kolko answers "How Are Your Personal Priorities Changing as You Get Older?"  Kolko shares how he spends less time worrying and working and more time with family and enjoying the world.  He has transitioned from working over 100 hours a week to roughly 60 to 70.  Kolko learns he can do powerful, meaningful work while not working all the time. 

Jon Kolko the founder and director of the Austin Center for Design.  He has authored multiple books on design, including "Wicked Problems: Problems Worth Solving."  Previously he has held senior roles at venture accelerator Thinktiv and frog design and was a professor of Interactive and Industrial Design at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD).  Kolko earned his Masters in Human Computer Interaction (MHI) and BFA in Design from Carnegie Mellon University.


Erik Michielsen: How are your personal priorities changing as you get older?

Jon Kolko:  Generally, I'm spending less time worrying, more time loving my wife, more time reading, and just enjoying the world. I had probably gone from working on average probably 100 or 110 hours a week to like 60 or 70 hours and of those 60 or 70, I probably enjoy 95 percent of them as opposed to like 20 percent of the 100 hours. And so, your like quality of life is off the charts. It's not all peaches and cream. But definitely is, like it seems weird to say like as I've gotten older. Like I don’t feel very old. I still feel like a kid but if we're going to go with that train of thought as I've gotten older, I think I've realized that I can do like good powerful meaningful stuff and I don’t have to work 100 percent of the time to do it, and that I can put it aside and do something else.