I was walking through one of our client houses the other day, and noticed that one of the clients had this beautiful case of retractable, muted color pens. I wish I had a better way to describe the color, because it was what really drew me to it. They weren't pastel, or candy colored, or neon. They were these rich gorgeous almost nature colored purples and greens and muted pinks. I'm a sucker for a good art supply, so I commented on it and asked if they were as awesome as they looked.
The client enthusiastically said they were and then offered to let me try one! I looked around for a piece of paper, and they opened their journal to let me write in there. THEY. OPENED. THEIR. JOURNAL. Their TREATMENT JOURNAL. Suddenly this silly little interaction felt enormously monumental. I simultaneously could not decline to write in their journal, but was also paralyzed with "what the hell should I write in here?!" My go to for testing pens is a heart and the word "Love" because it has so many delightful swoops. I started the heart and then panicked. I can't write "Love" in a kid's journal! But I'd already done the heart (in a lovely mauve ink). I quickly pivoted from "Love" to "Believe," which I feel like was the best choice possible. I hope. Pretty sure it at least won't get any weird looks or grievances.
It's three days later and I'm still neurotically thinking about it. So PSA. Have a plan (or a scrap of paper) before you complement someone's pens.