I work in a company of roughly 90 people. Between us, we have one refrigerator for people to store their lunches for the day.
In my two years here, I think I’ve used it about three times. Today was one of those times. When I opened it this morning, this is what it looked like:
If you look at the left side, that’s one entire shelf taken up by a Domino’s pizza box. If you look inside, you will find three slices of pizza. That’s an entire shelf unavailable to the rest of the staff.
On the shelf immediately below that, you see a huge lunch box (or whatever they’re calling modern day lunch pails). Due to the shape of tupperware containers, it’s essentially taking up the entire shelf. The only way you could fit something in next to it is if it were loose in a plastic baggy.
Yes, this is a small and inconsequential thing to observe. But that’s my point.
Being considerate means thinking of how your actions are or will affect others, no matter the circumstance.
I observed this minutes after I parked my car. On the block where I parked, there was a car parked about 10 feet away from the red-painted curb. That 10 feet is just small enough that you couldn’t fit another car, but significant enough that if the car had pulled right up to the red, we probably could have fit another car in the row. Considering the only free parking for miles is this one small alley, those who park there should try and park as tight as possible to make as many spaces as they can.
In my life, I try to be considerate of others all the time. I think about if I’m in people’s way, if my actions are hurting anyone else, if what I’m enjoying makes it difficult for others to enjoy the same thing or if I’ve even put myself in a position to be noticed by others. And I don’t expect anything from others that I don’t expect of myself.
If I’m driving on a highway and someone comes speeding up behind me, I move over. When I’m crossing the street, I don’t hit the crosswalk button so that it stops traffic. I just walk when there are no cars.
At an ice cream shop, I don’t stand and taste all 31 flavors to decide what I want when there’s a line of 20 behind me.
Again, it’s small, but when it all adds up it’s a symptom of something greater. When we start forgetting about or not noticing others, we become selfish in the worst sense of the word.
Yet something tells me it’s the people who spend the most time telling everyone else how they should live their lives that are the least considerate among us…