Slow productivity is a team sport: A critique of Cal Newport’s Slow Productivity

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Slow productivity is a team sport: A critique of Cal Newport’s Slow Productivitylibrarianship, management, slow librarianship, Time, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 6/12/2024 with 8 comments

Image credit: Dolce far Niente by John Singer Sargent  This is the fourth in a series of essays I’ve written on time. You can view a list of all of them on the first essay. This was going to be a somewhat different essay before I read Cal Newport’s Slow Productivity. I read the book …

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Slowness, disability, and the art of losing

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Slowness, disability, and the art of losingabout me, career, slow librarianship, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 1/8/2024 with Comments Off on Slowness, disability, and the art of losing

A few weeks ago, I had what honestly felt like a perfect day. It was a bright sunny day in December that felt almost stolen from the jaws of our long, cold, gray Portland winters. I woke up with almost no joint pain for the first time in ages and tons of energy. I worked …

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Slow librarianship and prioritizing life over work

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Slow librarianship and prioritizing life over worklibrarianship, slow librarianship, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 8/8/2023 with 6 comments

I recently wrote an essay for CHOICE’s LibTech Insights blog entitled “Building a Better Library Tech Future with Slow Librarianship.” It provides a brief introduction to slow librarianship, how it relates to library technology, and how our profession’s reification of innovation has kept us from really focusing on the needs of our patrons. I know …

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Stop normalizing overwork

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Stop normalizing overworkcommunity college libraries, instruction, librarianship, mid-career, slow librarianship, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 10/23/2022 with 5 comments

In the years that I have been trying my best to avoid overwork, I’ve become more attuned to the signs that I am indeed overworking. I usually notice one of three things: an inability to slow my brain down and not think about work during my off-time, difficulty with problem-solving (where my brain becomes like …

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Universal design for work?librarianship, libraries, management, slow librarianship, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 5/12/2022 with 3 comments

I’ve had migraines for over 20 years. I didn’t seek workplace accommodations for them until this year. The biggest barrier to getting accommodations at work was my own internalized ableism, but of course I came by it honestly in our society. There were two elements holding me back. The first was shame about my limitations. …

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In all the bad… some good things

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In all the bad… some good thingshi, libraries, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 12/29/2020 with 2 comments

Wow, this has been a hard year. No one’s life has been untouched by 2020 between the pandemic and unrelenting proof that the social safety net has been dismantled by late-stage capitalism, the state-sanctioned murders of black and brown people and ensuing protests, the horrendous wildfires that felt like horsemen of the coming climate apocalypse, and a stressful election. It’s horrifying. …

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The crushing expectations on working women and where’s my fucking village?

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The crushing expectations on working women and where’s my fucking village?career, libraries, management, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 8/3/2020 with 9 comments

On Friday and Saturday, my Twitter feed was full of anger and frustration over a blog post on the ALSC (Association for Library Services to Children) Blog. Entitled “How Motherhood Has Influenced Me as a Children’s Librarian,” the post was problematic because it suggested (probably unintentionally) that childless children’s librarians could not connect with patrons as much or have …

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Thoughts on work, well-being, solidarity, and advocacy in our current… situation

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Thoughts on work, well-being, solidarity, and advocacy in our current… situationALA, hi, librarianship, libraries, management, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 4/8/2020 with 3 comments

I have been wanting to blog for weeks. I have several blog posts I started that I just couldn’t get through. My attention span reminds me of my son’s at age 5 when his teacher delicately suggested we should have him assessed for ADHD. It rapidly jumps between various tasks at hand, my family, my …

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#LISMentalHealth: That time my brain and job tried to kill me

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#LISMentalHealth: That time my brain and job tried to kill meabout me, classic blunders, librarianship, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 2/18/2020 with 6 comments

Happy LIS Mental Health Week friends! I want to start this post by recognizing someone who has done a great deal to support library workers’ mental health in the face of toxic workplaces, Kaetrena Davis Kendrick. Kaetrena has done some incredibly valuable research on low morale and toxic workplaces in librarianship and has created an awesome …

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Thoughts at Mid-Career Part 5: Where to From Here?

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Thoughts at Mid-Career Part 5: Where to From Here?about me, librarianship, mid-career, social software, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 9/11/2019 with 9 comments

This is the fifth in a series of essays. You can access the rest here, though it’s not necessary to read them all or in order. “To me, the only habit worth ‘designing for’ is the habit of questioning one’s habitual ways of seeing” -Jenny Odell, How to do Nothing “We have to fight for this world, but we …

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Thoughts at Mid-Career Part 4 – The Cult of Productivity: You’re Never Doing Enough

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Thoughts at Mid-Career Part 4 – The Cult of Productivity: You’re Never Doing Enoughabout me, career, librarianship, mid-career, social software, Work, Work-life balance

by Meredith Farkas on 8/28/2019 with 4 comments

This is the fourth in a series of essays. You can access the rest here, though it’s not necessary to read them all or in order. “These days, I just want to slow down. I want to pull the shutters closed and block out the world… The more time I have, the more I realize that all that …

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