In a time of great change, there are a few things that we can do to keep us grounded. These usually entail a lot of thought and consciousness to remind us that change is natural, and sometimes necessary so that we all can evolve and develop. I have been quite busy with work and in my role at SLA, therefore have not had much time to spend on other things but I am due to have a more relaxing time soon and look forward to some time to reflect and re-energise. Here are some thoughts on how I have maintained my positivity in the past few weeks.
- Elevator Pitching – The month started off great with the Dragon’s Den style pitching for start-up businesses for Project Remake which I mentioned in my last blog post. It was a great evening hearing about business ideas, and I was truly impressed with the level of research and preparation that was presented to the panel of ‘Dragons’ and the audience at Linklater’s office in London. I even learnt a few tips about how to do a great elevator pitch and some tips on business information presenting for when you have to cross examine an idea. It was fascinating to hear the insights and advice offered from the panel and it goes to show that an effective network and support system are some of the basic ingredients for success.
2. New Perspectives – I have been living in London for most of my life and sometime get visitors from abroad who I have to show around. I am now at the point where I have a love-hate relationship with London, and therefore I can apply a critical eye when I see fit. I am still forever picking up rubbish and reporting anti-social behaviour in my neighbourhood. The local elections were also on but this time I didn’t vote as I was busy with the above. However, when I have a visitor from abroad – I try to show the city and my neighbourhood in a positive light. There is history and old buildings here – it is good to see tourist sights and the city with these fresh eyes. I know it is the same when I visit family and friends in other parts of the world. I am getting to the stage where I have seen several tourist sites but there are new area to discover…even if I have been before – such as recent revisits to the Tower of London (considering it used to be opposite to my office for four years and I used to see it often) and Brick Lane.
Reminding myself of my own enthusiasm for the city is great too. This was the case when I went on a walking tour of the Georgian Mayfair area of London. I remember the early days spending time around those parts and yet there is so much more to discover after hearing about the area in the guided tour. I hope to take the Tube (underground train) again one day and have a walk around the area to admire the architecture again. It is refreshing to see things in a new light with added context and a fresh perspective.
3. Perennial Renewal – Just like the blossoms and bloom that come out at Springtime, I always feel quite positive at Spring as the flowers and more daylight hours allow us to enjoy more time and warmer outdoors. I also love buying new plants for the containers that did not last the pervious winter and get some new herbs for us in the summer months. I always have a wish list of plants that I no longer have, but sometimes even though I go to several garden centres, they still don’t have what I want. Therefore I have to look for them online or wait another year to try to source the plants.
I didn’t get a chance to make it to Beth Chatto’s Garden last year but I would definitely like to go to see it this year. I have also come to realised that we are still very lucky to have green spaces in such a built-up area. However I am getting to the point where I do want to be in a quiet countryside or near a beach to relax sometimes.
For the time being though, I still love looking at all the flowers in my local area and enjoy looking at all the beautiful plants and flowers in garden and local parks. The best things about spring are being enthuse by other gardeners and new plant knowledge, and therefore it is the perennial problem.
4. Perseverance – In times when there are too many changes or you just need to stay on the roller coast of life – it is hard to do everything to the best of your ability and that is what I am feeling at present with trying to tie up loose ends as I prefer for my first trips overseas since the pandemic. I am having to make sure that I am really organised, as well as trying to maintain high standards for all the things I need to get through in a short space of time.
I guess what is keeping me going is my tenacity as well as perseverance to complete the task in hand. I can easily decide that I can give up on some of my commitments but I have only let a few slip in the last few weeks – such as not attending my book club as it is clashing with my work or volunteering. I know that one day in the next couple of years I will have more time and therefore I would like pick up where I left off. I miss chatting with the other members of the book club. I am also learning new things in my leisure time and have been tempted to drop them too but I decide to continue with them for our wellbeing and fitness and trying to fit them into my work and family life is something I literally have to persevere with to ensure that I have a work-life balance. I am fortunate that can do this.
5. Personal Development for me – It is true to say that I am being challenged on many aspects, as nothing ever stays the same. I have recently been looking at all the areas of information and library management to ensure that I am keep abreast of all the new thoughts leadership pieces as well as the ability to set the agenda and look at new trends in my field. I have been very pro-active with my development and do find that I am now at the stage that I do know a lot with my experience, as well as with my active life. I do find that I am happy to take on new challenges and learn these new experiences. I am at a stage where I am able to take these opportunities as they are presented and make them work for the best outcome on a case-by-case basis. I probably would have been a little less able and confident to do this perhaps about 15 years ago but after 28 years working in business information – I feel confident to tackle any challenges and opportunities that may come way. It was really great to take part on several international events last week and to showcase the breath of way that we can give value to communities on various topics and how important our role is now and in the future. I feel utterly positive for our place in time as information professionals – and I knew this will always be required in the long term.
So these are my 5 Ps for the last few weeks – I initially thought that I did not do much but then realised that I actually did go out a bit. With these points in mind, I look forward to some relaxing time with family and friends as I have a holiday, rest and to raise a cheer or two! Cheers!