Summer is officially here! After months of preparation, children’s departments across the United States have reached our busiest time of the year. I would like to take a few minutes to encourage all of us to remember that while we want to attentively serve our patrons, it is also SO important to make sure we are giving ourselves self-care.
Every fall we feel a sense of, “Wow, that was a long summer! So glad we can take a breather now that the kids are back in school.” Every spring we feel a sense of irregular calm before the storm… all the while knowing—summer is coming. We savor the quiet days and plan as much as possible for summer programs, because before we know it, summer will be here and there will be very little time between desk shifts, meetings, and all the other hats we wear serving children and families. Then, as Emeril would say—BAM! It’s summer!
Here are some suggestions for self-care during work hours:
On your break, getting out of the library for even five minutes can be beneficial. Breathe in the fresh air, take a walk, and enjoy the sunshine. Afterwards you will be refreshed and perspective will be had, I promise.
Make a Tea
If your library is anything like mine, the air conditioning is on full blast all summer. A hot tea can be just the ticket to a warm escape, and is reminiscent of calmer times around fire places with a good book.
I know, I know—we all know we are supposed to drink at least 64 ounces of water a day. I am only being a broken record because I know how vital H2O is to me and my liveliness each day!
Read a Book
Escape into the pages of a good book on your break. We all know how reading is the best form of self-care for librarians! Combine this with getting outside and have a full therapeutic experience.
Stretch/Do Some Yoga
Is there a meeting room or a break room that you can sneak into to do some deep breathing and deep stretching, or even restorative yoga poses? I encourage you to give yourself permission to do so! Otherwise, there are great stretches you can do right at your desk.
Take a Five
Been on the desk for hours? Tell your coworker you need a minute, and give yourself five minutes to recharge in the back. Text a supportive family member or friend for some TLC.
Have a great summer everyone, and remember, we cannot show up for our patrons unless we are showing up for ourselves!
This post addresses the following ALSC Core Competencies: Professionalism and Professional Development.