Man is a social animal. We all know that. We live in a society that is governed by a set of unspoken rules and regulations. Consequently, we live around other human beings. Over time, we make strong bonds in some people and start to genuinely care about them. Before the 20th century, the relationship that two families in a neighborhood shared was a deep one. A relationship which involved genuine care. Everyone knew everyone. People used to go for lunches, picnics, shopping, clubbing- all together. Over a period of time, our life has started its fast forward moments. Come to think of it, we sometimes even miss the defining moments of our lives. For example, a man misses his wife’s delivery as he gets stuck at work. Slowly and steadily, solitude has consumed a better part of our lives. Children do not have children of their age to play with them. Play dates have to be arranged for them. Young women feel that focusing on a strong career is more successful than falling in love with a man and marrying him. People get bored. In a way, we are all sad. Majority of the people on this earth crave company. But now, they do not know where to look for it. Well, have you tried the house right next to yours?
I understand that securing social relationships is not an easy task to accomplish. A lot of effort has to be put in nurturing any relationship. Then why would this one be any different? There is always a house next to yours! So, just do not give up. Here is a list of things that you can try to do in order to make your neighbors your friends.
1) Start with a smiley ‘hi’
Yes, smile! When you smile, it radiates a lot of positive energy. Who isn’t attracted to that? While passing your neighbors in the corridor or along the side of the common road you share, just stop and smile. Say hi. Introduce yourself. They will respond. It is never that they won’t. Well, they won’t, if you look too- smiley and creep them out. You have to know where to draw the line. Do not appear over eager or pushy. Just let it flow naturally.
2) Have a house warming party
Do you need a reason to throw a party? Well, add a house warming party to the list of the reasons why you want to throw a party. When you move into a building or a new neighborhood, invite all the families around and have a lovely get together. Throw in some delicious wine and snacks. Mingle with the people! That is the aim objective of throwing a house warming party. An event gives you a reason to talk to people and get to know them better.
3) Help in need
You see your neighbors are worried about something. Be friendly and ask them what is it that is bothering them. If they do not want to tell you straight away, let them be. If they openly talk about it, try and help them out. People like people who are friendly and helpful. When we talk about helping, it even includes helping the old lady next door walk down the stairs. It could be anything.
4) Try and finding common interests
A new couple moves next door. You observe them for a few days. You see that the man is into fitness and the lady bakes well. After making initial contact, you can try suggesting to the woman how you are so desperate for your husband/ boyfriend to lose some weight. You could ask her recipes of some things that are light and healthy. When you share a common activity, it just brings you closer. Again, do NOT seem desperate or over eager. It can be interpreted in a really bad way.
Try and synchronize some of your household chores with the lady next door. For example, you make a plan of going to the supermarket together. Maybe form a carpool for the kids. This way, you get more opportunities to interact with the neighbors.
WHY KNOWING YOU NEIGHBORS IS BENEFICIAL
1) They look after your kids if and when you have to go out of town on a short notice and you just cannot find a decent babysitter. If you know your neighbors well, you won’t hesitate leaving your kids with them. You will know that your kids are being taken care of.
2) They are around when your family goes on a long holiday. They can look after your house, get your mail. In return, you can bring them something nice from your trip to wherever. Even a small gesture is enough.
There are many small small reasons why knowing your neighbors is beneficial and important. The list includes things like kicking away your loneliness, giving you a much needed break from family drama and so on. But, when you expect your neighbors to do things for you, then you should also be ready to return the favor. No relationship is a one way street! Every relationship that you care for, nurture it and preserve it for life.