Achievement Unlocked: Joining the Medium League

Shara Rosenbalm
2 min readSep 17, 2020


Photo by Windows on Unsplash

At this point it’s safe to say 2020 has been a trip, right? A whole WTF, cancel it yesterday, put it in the trash, fast forward to 2021 type of year. I expected it to be, not because of a worldwide pandemic, but because my status quo wasn’t cutting it. I wanted more for my career and my personal growth that would be change everything. Being uncomfortable results in growth. It became my theme for the year. That meant doing shit I would avoid. My “hell no” had to become “let’s get it.”

We cannot become what we want by remaining where we are.
- Rachel Adams

First things first, I had to break up with graphic design. The passion wasn’t there and I felt trapped, bored even. Something had to change. Enter product design and Southern Methodist University (more on that in another post).

Next, I had to get my ass into a product design role. That meant surveying the landscape and doing my research. In a way, UXing the UX career path. I’m a little type A. I had a lot of doubts. Matter of fact, I had so many doubts, I waited almost 5 years to make any moves. I did what I had to in order to feel good about going back to school.

I wanted to make meaningful connections. No one wants to feel like they’re pestering a stranger for their advice and discarded. I thought of it as curating a network of people I could build relationships with. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve met this year, but some have had a profound effect on my journey.

Then there’s writing.… well damn, I hadn’t done that. In retrospect, my inner imposter had been a barrier to entry. We all have goals we aspire to. It’s the lack of action that can get the best of us. This is me, taking action and uncomfortable AF.

Achievement Unlocked (Kind of)

Well, that’s the goal anyway. Thanks to a chat with two of the many meaningful friends I’ve in 2020 (hey Aladrian & Madeline 👋🏾) I’m here. I’m taking a giant step into a territory where I don’t belong. But hey, that goal won’t reach itself, right?

I want to use this space to focus on a few topics in particular:

  • my experience in my new product design role
  • designing while black (DWB)
  • effective career growth
  • and nerdy topics like design systems, interaction design, etc.

I talked about growth earlier. To grow in writing and design, I want to hear from you (yeah you reading this). Let me know what topics you want to read about. Tell me how I can add more value to your world.

Glad to have you along for the ride.



Shara Rosenbalm

Digital product designer at Dialexa, advocate for BIPOC, speaker, and hustler.