You must love what you do. Your heart must be in it. Without enthusiasm, you cannot work up to your fullest potential; you’re just going through the motions. If you don’t like what you are doing–get out. Don’t whine, complain, and continually make excuses. Leave.~ Coach John Wooden
I love what I do. Seriously love it. I began working in public libraries in 1996, and loved the interaction with people. There is a dramatic flair to customer service–an entering onto the stage even when you are not up for it. A genuine smile and offer to help your customer gives rise to a good feeling inside. Humor with your colleagues goes a long way toward relieving the pressures of bad situations. And, on the occasion when you really make a difference in someone’s day… wow. That’s satisfaction.
In Fall 2008, I began my work as a medical librarian. My job evolved over the years. As an outreach librarian, I am weaving in my interests and experiences with public service, self-empowerment, and adult learning. We are witnessing libraries morphing into places where people get digital access, and health information is rapidly moving toward a digital experience, Librarians are well-placed to support communities in accessing digital health information.
Librarians could play a role in addressing these Healthy People 2020 Objectives:
- HC/HIT-5 Increase the proportion of persons who use electronic personal health management tools.
- HC/HIT-6 Increase individuals’ access to the Internet.
- HC/HIT-8 Increase the proportion of quality, health-related websites.
- HC/HIT-9 Increase the proportion of online health information seekers who report easily accessing health information.
In my own work at Baystate Health and with public libraries in Western Massachusetts, as the incoming Healthy Communities COI Leader for the National Network of Libraries of Medicine/New England Region and as an Executive Board Member for the Massachusetts Library System, I hope to spread the word (and the enthusiasm!) about Libraries and Healthy People 2020.