When you go to a meeting at work, why would you fail to take pen and paper? I attended a meeting earlier this week and two people did exactly that. Beforehand, when I saw them headed toward the meeting room, the busybody part of me wanted to ask, “Aren’t you going to take a notepad and something to write with?” But the new me has learned to mind my own business. It was hard biting my tongue. Well, about 10 minutes into the meeting, both of them began looking around, reaching for paper from their neighbors. One of them was “sharing” a pen with the person sitting beside her. We can do such seemingly small things that are very thoughtless and impact other people negatively. Their fumbling around trying to find paper and pen was disruptive, inconsiderate, and could easily have been avoided had they bothered to bring pen and paper with them.
This takes me back to grade school as I recall those students, usually troublemakers, who came to class without any books, pens, or paper. Those kids would also borrow pen and paper from their neighbor. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to learn that these grow people at work were those same students who came to class empty-handed. I’m convinced that many of our behaviors as adults have carried over from childhood – both the good and the bad.