Recipes for Mindfulness in Your Library: Supporting Resilience and Community Engagement

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Mindfulness not only offers the possibility of a healthy life/career balance for librarians themselves, but in challenging times of rapid social change and uncertainty, it also represents a powerful way to build community resilience. In fact, mindfulness experiences can be structured to nurture the kind of civic engagement and discourse essential for library support. This collection explores a wide range of approaches that demonstrate how librarians have integrated mindfulness into their teaching, collections, services, programming, spaces, partnerships, and professional development. An inspirational idea generator for library administrators, marketers, and outreach staff, in this book the contributors delve into such mindful activities as

  • using a work journal to practice reflective writing;
  • mindful strategies for leading library teams;
  • yoga and meditation groups at public libraries;
  • helping students destress with a library Zen Zone;
  • deploying digital resources to promote mindfulness;
  • mindful scholarship at Minneapolis College; and
  • overcoming research anxiety using a mindful approach.

As more librarians commit to individual and sustained reflection and practices in their own lives, those approaches can expand to include the communities they serve. This collection offers more than a dozen in-depth examples of mindfulness in action.


Part I    Library as Hub
Chapter 1    Cultivating a “Mindful Medicine” Ethos
Rebecca Snyder and Robin O’Hanlon

Chapter 2    Accidentally Sustainable: Building a Weekly Meditation Community
Laura Horwood-Benton

Chapter 3    The Be Project: Sparking a Quiet Revolution in Rural Kentucky
Katie Scherrer

Chapter 4    Providing a Space to Rest: Weaving Restorative Yoga into the Strategic Plan
Millie Jackson

Part II    Innovative Services
Chapter 5    Mindful McQuade: Mindfulness in the Heart of a Small College Campus
Catherine Wong, Katherine LaFlamme, and Michaela Keating

Chapter 6    Mindfulness Experiences: The Library Brain Booth
Katia G. Karadjova

Chapter 7    Craving Quiet: A Library’s Zen Zone
Kellie Sparks and Hillary Fox

Part III    Personal Practice
Chapter 8    Mindful and Reflective Writing as Strategy: How a Work Journal Can Help Make You Whole
Michelle Reale

Chapter 9    Mindfulness Is Not a Life Hack
Elizabeth Galoozis and Caro Pinto

Chapter 10    Outreach for Inreach: Using Digital Resources to Promote Mindfulness
Jenn Carson

Chapter 11    Mindfully Managing Library Teams
Jenny Colvin

Part IV    Teaching/Research
Chapter 12    Shifting the Pace: Contemplative Practices and the Research Process
Lisa Meléndez

Chapter 13    A Persistent Praxis: Putting Mindfulness Scholarship into Action at Minneapolis College
Jennifer Sippel

Chapter 14    Going with the Flow: Finding Flexible Functionality in Teaching and Mentoring
Anne Pemberton and Lisa Coats

Chapter 15    Overcoming Research Anxiety: A Mindful Approach to Literature Review Searching
Elizabeth Galoozis and Kevin Michael Klipfel


Madeleine Charney

Madeleine Charney is a research services librarian at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She is an active member of the Contemplative Pedagogy Working Group on her campus and helps facilitate a new campus initiative, Mindfulness for All. She is in the process of becoming a certified instructor of Koru, an evidence-based mindfulness program for emerging adults.

Jenny Colvin

Jenny Colvin, MLS, is the assistant director for Outreach Services at Furman University Libraries, encompassing library instruction, research assistance, the branch libraries, and the library liaison program. She is the liaison to the departments of mathematics, computer science, education, and religion. During the May Experience term, Jenny teaches classes in storytelling and reading. She is a cofounder of the Contemplative Pedagogy Interest Group in the ACRL.

Richard Moniz

Dr. Richard Moniz is the director of library services at the Horry-Georgetown Technical College, which has campuses in Conway, Georgetown, and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. He previously served as the director of library services for Johnson & Wales University’s North Miami campus from 1997 to 2004 and was director of library services for Johnson & Wales University’s Charlotte campus from 2004 to 2018. He is also an adjunct instructor for the University of North Carolina at Greensboro’s LIS program. In addition to publishing numerous articles, Moniz is the sole author of the textbook Practical and Effective Management of Libraries (2010) and the coauthor or coeditor of six other books: Fundamentals for the Academic Liaison (2014), The Personal Librarian: Enhancing the Student Experience (2014), The Mindful Librarian (2016), Librarians and Instructional Designers: Innovation and Collaboration (2016), The Dysfunctional Library: Challenges and Solutions to Workplace Relationships (2017), and Recipes for Mindfulness in Your Library (2019).

"Writers offer ideas, anecdotes, and real-life examples ... A great resource for those interested in taking a mindful approach in their libraries."
— Library Journal

"Each chapter stands on its own and gives library personnel the tools to start programs in public or academic libraries, no matter how small. This reviewer intends to put to use ideas for an undergraduate library in a small community."

"An accessible, useful resource for librarians interested in learning more about mindfulness and its applications for their libraries, their patrons, and themselves."
— Booklist