I can’t believe it’s already September. At this time every year I feel like it’s a good time to hit reset. I think it’s because in childhood, September was always associated with a fresh start thanks to so many years of schooling. There was always an influx of new friends, new grade, new places, new goals.

In business, I always feel that same fresh start in September. Everyone is back from summer travels. Many companies are trying to meet goals for the last quarter of the year. And depending on the nature of the company, some are trying to get their product ready for the holiday shopping season, while others are trying to be ready for the masses who in January will want to get on the personal development and New Years resolution train.

It’s easy to let the fall speed by as you get pulled in many directions. But don’t forget the value of focus. Often times we just do what people need us to do. We do what colleagues ask. We do what users ask for. We get into a very reactionary mode. Although we might be great at getting things done, it’s important to pause and ask “am I doing the right things” and “why am I doing _______”.

Last week in The UX Notebook, there was a great article you should read about why you shouldn’t give users what they want. The premise is that, if you give people what they want, you’re only addressing a symptom, not the underlying problem.

As with so many things related to UX, I think this applies so much to everyday life. It’s not enough to just do. It’s important to identify the “why” behind what you are doing.