Trying To Do It All

by Elizabeth on May 17, 2011 · 0 comments

in conferences, librarianship

In case you missed it, I’m attending the Medical Library Association conference in Minneapolis this week.  I’ve been chosen as an official conference blogger and will be blogged a couple of times a day on my experiences as a new member and first time conference attendee.  I know most of you won’t be following me on the official conference blog, so I will be reposting my posts here.

Even a lolcat needs a break from being funny.

tend to be a bit over-ambitious when it comes to setting a conference schedule.  I remember while at an ALA conference I attended while a library school student, making a mad dash across Chicago in attempts to make it to a session that I JUST HAD TO ATTEND only to arrive and discover that they had changed the location.

Luckily, MLA being the nicely contained conference that it is, I knew this wouldn’t be a problem.  I figured with sessions being only a floor apart it would, in fact, be possible to attend two sessions in the same time slot.  Hear one or two speakers, move quickly to the next and hear one or two more on a completely different, but entirely interesting, topic.

I always fail to consider exhaustion.  As in, the constant moving around, networking, learning, and trying to keep up with the lightening-pace twitter stream is bound to leave me brain-fried and unable to remember what day of the week it is.

I blame the solo librarian syndrome.  As a solo librarian, it is my job to do it all, because there is no one else to do it.  So if I don’t do it, it doesn’t get done.  I have somehow developed the misconception that it is possible for me to always be able to do it all.  Because top speed is how I function at work, top speed should be how I function at MLA.

Which is how I almost fell asleep at the Ovid party.

So new members and first time conference attendees, learn from me.  Don’t try to do it at all.  It’s not necessary to go to every vendor party, to try to attend multiple sessions in the same hour and half, or follow the twitter stream as if your life depends on it.  It’s okay to miss something.  It’s okay to take a break and recharge your personal (or phone) batteries.  You don’t have to do it all.

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