Some may say that librarians fall into many stereotypes: bun-wearing, shushing, antisocial, etc. The list describing the stereotypical librarian could go on and on. Most modern-day librarians do not fall into the descriptors of the stereotypes that have been written or portrayed by media. In fact, there was even a film made on the subject called “Hollywood Librarians.” Read more about the film here: http://www.journalgazette.net/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070923/LOCAL0201/709230322/1002/LOCAL
One librarian stereotype that I have fallen prey to in the past is the stereotype of perfectionist. Many librarians are guilty of this quality, or fault, depending on how you look at it. In fact, I had a graduate library school professor who always made it a point to say, “Remember: It’s completion, not perfection, that counts at the end of the day.” Our desire to search until we get exactly the right answer, the perfect lesson, and the pleased patron drives us to want perfection.
And that is the reason for this blog post: How I gave up on perfection and learned to settle for an evolution of things.
Throughout my career, I’ve learned that nothing worthwhile happens overnight. A quality school library program takes years to build, and must have full participation of other stakeholders (students, teachers, administration, parents, and community members) in order to be successful. I have been blessed to know that I have the full support of my educational community in building a library literacy program that both meets and exceeds the needs of all of the necessary constituents. However, it is still a work in progress, ever evolving and changing for the better.
One way that I have learned to let things evolve is through the art of scrapbooking. As silly as it sounds, scrapbooking is a largely organic process. When I begin a scrapbook page, I have a relative idea of what I’d like to see happen on the page, but, it never turns out to be that vision. Instead, it evolves as I work on the page. Accidentally cut the wrong size shape with your Cricut? Use it as a background shape for your page. You see, it organically evolves to something unexpectedly beautiful. It’s a process I’m learning to embrace, just as a successful professional librarian image and school library program takes time and unexpected turns in a charming manner.
My advice: Keep working towards building your professional image, your library program, and your life. The unexpected may be the best that will happen to you.