Jumping straight into things on the second day, I’d like to tell you a little about my day job. You know, the thing that I do when I’m not being a mom.
I try very hard to not be a mom at work, but that’s a different blog post. A series of different blog posts, to be exact. We’ll get there.
I am a librarian. It is probably the thing I would call myself first if you asked me to label myself, before female, before mom, before American. I’ve wanted to be a librarian since I was nineteen years old and I realized something very, very important:
Being an academic librarian is very different from being a public librarian. I still work in public service, but my patrons are, on the whole, different. The questions I get at the reference desk are different. The books I collect for my collection are different (though I did get a leisure reading collection this year!) My responsibilities and my supervisor’s expectations of me are different.
I don’t get a whole lot of supervision at this job, especially because of my specific position. And one of my charges is to get more people into my library. We’re a tiny campus, so the library is also very small. It’s not the monolithic entity it would be at a larger campus.
That’s where creativity at work comes in. This week is the week before finals, and we are running a stress relief campaign. This year, it’s Kentucky Derby themed! I’ve made some selfie props (not pictured because they have my university’s logo all over them,) created a trivia quiz, and will be printing some derby-themed coloring pages for my students.
We’ve also got playing cards, chess/checkers, and puzzles. Last semester we had an 80’s themed stress relief week because of the Rubik’s cube.
What does this all have to do with being a CareerMom?
Well, I find being creative to be incredible stress relief. Being able to be creative while at work, guilt-free (because it’s work related) is even better, because I don’t have to juggle my creative time with mom-time. So I want to encourage you all, if you are a creative person, to find ways to be creative at work. Put a little extra effort into that PowerPoint. Take a minute to decorate your office or cubicle. Do some creative writing about a project. What it looks like will no doubt be very different depending on your career and the level of supervision you are subjected to, but you’ll never know if you can do it unless you try.