Daily Archives: March 4, 2013

Bookster: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind

Tbookster_logohe Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer is the featured Bookster title for March. I’m Eric Stanton, a librarian at CADL Okemos and your host for Bookster this month.

I was initially drawn to this title because my personal interest in renewable energy my hope that its use will grow in this country. I am especially interested in sustainability and green living.  Some in my discussion group were apprehensive about selecting this title. However, I had heard so many good things about this book that  I encouraged our book group members to give it a shot. I hope you will too.

TheBoyWhoHarnessedTheWind_bookI listened to the audiobook in early February and to my surprise it surpassed my expectations — this is a wonderful book. The subtitle is Creating Currents of Electricity & Hope, and it definitely generates hope. It is not just about another problem in a developing nation, it transcends cultural differences. I believe it’s an inspirational read for anyone picking it up, especially young people. The main theme express the idea that if you have good intentions, work hard and remain steadfast in your efforts, you can become successful regardless of the obstacles in your life.

Eric headshot_cropped- Eric Stanton, Librarian at CADL Okemos

If our online discussion of The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind interests you and you’d like to share more in person, please join us at 12 p.m., April 4 for a lively discussion at CADL Okemos.

Don’t Panic

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Local career expert Lisa (a.k.a. Recruiter Uncensored) shares some of her knowledge with us every Monday. You can read this post in its original form along with comments here.

elevatorAn interesting article was featured on Yahoo News. The story covered a group of 25 souls who were trapped together for over an hour in an elevator that was stuck. Throughout their ordeal everyone remained calm and committed to passing the time in a constructive and positive way. No one freaked out.

What if someone had given in to the very human urge to panic? Can you imagine how different the experience would have been for all involved? It’s unlikely those pent up in the stifling box with them would have been unaffected. There would have been those who followed suit and let their own anxiety out and others, motivated by the toxic energy, who throttled the negative nellies. I can tell you right now I would have been one of the throttlers.

The elevator situation made me think of what can happen from time-to-time with unemployed professionals. How often do we find ourselves trying to navigate today’s challenges while others freak out? Let’s face it, though the economy is larger than an elevator, we are all stuck in it together. All can agree we’d like to emerge from this current recession quickly and on solid ground. For that to happen, we’re all going to have to do what the people in that elevator did…remain calm and pass the time in a constructive and positive way.

When someone allows anxiety over the situation at hand to express itself in public settings, everyone suffers. Nothing is gained from a Chicken Little freak out. If the sky is indeed falling, panicking about it won’t change the outcome. Showing others you are more inclined to surrender to doom versus fight for a solution just makes things worse. Who wants to be around someone bent on reminding everyone all is lost?

This concept goes beyond how public panic attacks can make fellow job seekers feel. Think about how companies are feeling right now. They are in choppy waters and trying to stay afloat. Do you think they want to hire someone who, every time the boat tips, starts screaming we’re all going to die? Of course not. They want solution-oriented people with a tendency to focus on a way out of a problem, not people they’d just as soon toss overboard when the going gets tough.

The point of this post is to stress the importance of keeping it together during these difficult times. If you must indulge in a panic attack from time-to-time, go for it. It’s a human thing to do. Just be sure you do so in private, balling the sheets in the middle of the night like the rest of us. When the sun comes up and you are rolling through your day, panic attacks are off the agenda.

- Lisa W-P, CADL Guest Blogger