Briefly reflect on the lessons learnt from each exercise:

  1. Reflective listening – I found this exercise a good tool for even general day-to-day life and forming relationships with people. It’s a good tool to not only get information from someone (a user), but also form a relationship and ensure the person you are speaking with feels heard and respected. It enabled me to tap into my partner’s memories of events and give some insight into certain motivations she has for her career and life in general.
  2. Defamiliarisation of everyday reality – this exercise brought up memories and feelings of travelling on trains and buses. I don’t particularly like travelling on buses so at points in the video I felt anxious that the bus was going too fast. I also felt sensations of wind blowing in my face – a memory associated with personal public transport experiences and recalled the same familiar noises that the train and bus make when pulling away and braking.
  3. Empathic modelling – I have previously done this exercise a few years ago in my UG degree, I once had to make an empathy suit (to simulate a disabled older person). I find the exercise profoundly moving and it triggers sensations of un-easiness, particularly when we take for granted our everyday mobility and 5 senses and then all of a sudden these are impaired. The effect of blurring our vision with the plastic cling film around our glasses and walking around the building made me feel vulnerable. Movement was slower and it was hard to judge depth and direction. I had to use the lights to guide myself through the hallways and relied upon the people walking in front of me to help me navigate my way around without tripping over any objects that I couldn’t see. This exercise enables you to put yourself into the user’s “shoes”, building empathy for the user and seeing situations in a different perspective.
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