Antoine de Saint-Exupery once said, “A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” At Urban Geko, a Orange County website design company, we realize this quote every time we finish a project. Design is a medium through which we can effectively and creatively communicate messages, thus every component of our work serves a unique purpose and comes together to form something greater. We believe that our design is helping to make the world a happier place by sharing these messages and implementing eco-friendly design practices. Besides our creative work as a graphic design company, The New York Times columnist David Brooks shares other factors that contribute to the public’s overall happiness (and some that don’t) in his article The Sandra Bullock Trade that I’ve narrowed down here:

WILL MAKE YOU HAPPY
1. Maintaing strong personal relationships
Whether it may be having dinner with friends or spending time with a significant other, good relationships have a strong correlation with your overall happiness.

2. Having high social trust
Living in a neighborhood where you are comfortable with your neighbors makes a huge difference. According to Brooks, countries with high social trust have happier people, more efficient governments & more economic growth.

3. Living during specific age ranges
Brooks states that people are happiest in their 20’s and right after they retire at 65.

4. Climbing the income scale*
This point seems to fall into both categories. People become happier when they receive raises and promotions, but if it has negative effects on other areas of their lives, such as personal relationships they will not.

WILL MAKE YOU UNHAPPY (OR NOT MAKE A SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCE)
1. Winning the lottery
This may make you happy initially, but it has not shown to have lasting effects.

2. Commuting to work
I really can’t imagine this being pleasant for anyone. Even if you drive a luxury car, traffic can be quite frustrating.

3. *Economic and professional success
This is one I’d imagine many people with disagree with, but Brook’s point is that these factors would pale in comparison to strong personal relationships.

Many parallels can be drawn between obtaining happiness and creating a brilliant piece of design work. It seems as though we are most happy when we have only what we need and what is most important to us. This same principal applies to design; as a website design firm, we only utilize the most effective techniques and content to create material that speaks to a target audience. And of course, making our clients happy is our number one priority!

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