I’m at the CILIP Cymru Wales conference whose theme is ‘Making a difference: libraries and their communities’ and I began to ponder and reflect on whether I make a difference in my job. I no longer work in a library but I spend my time helping those who do. I rarely write reflective blog posts, but maybe I’ve caught the conference spirit! So here goes!
I briefly spoke to someone last night who said they enjoyed my blog posts, and that was pleasing because sometimes I feel I’m blogging in the abyss! I try to write helpful posts, because that’s what I like to read myself. I hope I can help a librarian (or other) by what I’ve found.
There’s a danger when things aren’t going well to feel our efforts are fruitless, or that certain things are inevitable. In the library world I think this is a cause for concern at the moment, given all the difficulties facing public sector services right now. But whilst talking to a librarian of a pretty deprived area at lunch I was struck by her upbeat nature, the accounts of what they were achieving, the differences the library service makes to individual real people.
Sometimes, what we might think of as a small thing may be hugely important to someone else. Like the starfish story. (Or the fuller Wikipedia entry with the origins and context.) So, if at times you wonder what’s it all for, don’t give up (as Kate Bush & Peter Gabriel would sing), because every day something you will have done will have made a difference to someone.
(End of musings. Normal service will resume next time.)