Being Yourself

Central Library - 1I’ve had a bit of a treat this week. If you know me at all you’ll know that two of the things I tend to go on about are doing the work you love and only the work you love – and the wonderfulness of public libraries.

Well this week I’ve planned an event all about this called ‘Being Yourself.’ And I ran it on Tuesday in Liverpool Central Library. And I’m in here now, the day after. Sending out notes for everyone and writing this. Perfect.

Broadcasting directly to you from the Picton Reading Room!

Broadcasting directly to you from the Picton Reading Room!

The whole event was based on a theory I’ve been testing out for the last 20 years or so:

That by being fully yourself and doing work you love and that deeply matters to you, you will give yourself the best chance of running a social or ethical enterprise that will achieve what you want it to – and give you a happy and fulfilling life at the same time.

During the day a dozen of us discussed questions like:

Who are you, really?
Who do you want to work for and with?
What do you believe in and how can you use your basic priciples to find and organise your work?
How can you find and develop what it is you want to do?
And becoming even more like you, how can you make your idea into an enterprise that works for you?
And does good things too?

And a splendid time was, I think, had by all.

We did book one of the meeting rooms here for this. And we even spent some time in it. But mostly we roamed around this very greatest of libraries, exploring and enjoying ourselves.

Though I've worked in some great places over the years, I don't know that any of them could match the possibilities of here.

Though I’ve worked in some great places over the years, I don’t know that any of them could match the possibilities of here.

I even spent a day here last week making the whole thing up.

I even spent a day here last week making the whole thing up.

Big ideas appreciating a big place for the having of them.

Big ideas appreciating a big place for the having of them.

The companionable silence of this room.

The companionable silence of this room.

Possibilities on every shelf.

Possibilities on every shelf.

Through to the Hornby Library well, because it's here.

Through to the Hornby Library well, because it’s here.

And the serendipity of discovery.

And the serendipity of discovery.

All of this wonder belongs to us, the people of Liverpool.

All of this wonder belongs to us, the people of Liverpool.

The buildings themselves here being amongst the principal wonders.

The buildings themselves here being amongst the principal wonders.

Walking through the centuries of arrivals that made us ll who we are.

Walking through the centuries of arrivals that made us all who we are.

And who we might become.

And what we might become.

Throughout the day we kept going out on the roof.

Throughout the day we kept going out on the roof.

To look at our Liverpool.

To look at our Liverpool.

And talk about our lives.

And talk about our lives.

And one time while we were out here talking a piece of magic happened.

And one time while we were out here talking some magic happened.

A small group of people came out onto the roof behind us and started playing a very old record on a wind up gramophone. We’d talked about the joys of music several times during the morning, so this was a perfect way to end the first half of our day. And as we went in for lunch we discussed the power of chance and the happenstance for all of us in being out and around other people. You never know what might happen.

People thought I’d set it up!

'Being Yourself' at Liverpool Central Library.

‘Being Yourself’ at Liverpool Central Library.

This day was done for the School For Social Entrepreneurs North-West. So big thanks to Lisa Mairah for asking me. And to all of you who came on the day. Given the Library’s been back open in its new state for two and a half years now, I’m not sure what took me so long to run something here?

I think I’d like to do some more things here. It’s doing the work I love after all.

Thanks also to all Liverpool City Libraries staff for your care courtesy and interest. As ever, you were a pleasure to work with.

 

 

 

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