Won’t you be a kind neighbor? Whether you live in an apartment, condo or single-family home, there are a few things you can do to make sure your neighborhood has a positive atmosphere and that you’re treating your neighbors with kindness.
Note the time – Is it very early or very late? Be respectful of your neighbors and their schedules by keeping the noise you create to a minimum. It’s a good rule of thumb to follow quiet hours of 8pm to 10am. Check your city’s noise ordinance for more guidelines.
Be friendly – Say hello or wave to neighbors as you pass by. You don’t have to stop and chat if you’re in a rush or on your way out, but a smile and a wave go a long way.
Maintain your space – Take care of your yard, patio or the common areas. Make sure you tidy up after yourself and keep the neighborhood looking clean.
Control your pets – You may love dogs, but your neighbor might be scared or have had a bad experience. Make sure your pets are always on a leash when out in the neighborhood and don’t allow them to jump on others or bark into the wee hours of the night. Don’t forget to pick up after your pets and dispose of their waste appropriately.
Introduce yourself – Have new neighbors moved into your area? Introduce yourself and offer any assistance getting familiar with the community. You might know the best burrito spot or a fantastic hiking path. If you’re feeling extra kind, bring a welcome gift and exchange phone numbers.
Discuss disagreements in person – If you have a concern with one of your neighbors, don’t leave a passive/aggressive note on their door. Make sure to speak with them calmly about the matter. Give them the opportunity to make corrections before bringing in a third party like apartment management or the police.
Host a gathering – Invite your neighbors over for a BBQ or suggest a block party. This will allow everyone to get to know each other and promote a friendly environment.
Be helpful – Help your neighbor if you’re able. Carry groceries, lend a cup of sugar or offer to keep an eye out for packages for neighbors on vacation. These simple tasks can be kindness gold.
Be understanding – Your neighborhood may have a wide variety of people at many stages of life, and everyone will have a better experience if you approach all interactions from a place of understanding. For example, new parents might be exhausted and not have time to maintain their yard. Help them out by offering to mow or rake their lawn. Someone that works at night may ask for some additional quiet hours to catch up on sleep. Be understanding of everyone’s unique situation.
Are you a good neighbor? Which of these tips can you start incorporating to spread kindness in your neighborhood?