5 Tips to Peacefully Share Spaces with Roommates
It can be difficult to share spaces with roommates, this is especially true if you’ve never lived with a roommate before! Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. Don’t get frustrated or unhappy, instead, use these 5 tips to peacefully share spaces with roommates!
As with any relationship, communication is key. It’s difficult to share spaces with roommates if you don’t communicate. Uncomfortable silence is just that…uncomfortable. Another issue that can be solved with communication is frustration or anger. Your roommate can’t read your mind. They don’t know that you have plans with your friends or need some extra time in the kitchen in the mornings unless you tell them! So before you do anything else, communicate. Over-communicating is always better than not communicating enough when it comes to keeping things peaceful in shared spaces.
Living with strangers can be hard. Living with friends can be even harder. To peacefully share spaces with roommates it can be helpful to set up a schedule. Make a schedule, buy a desk calendar and hang it on the wall, stick post-it notes to your fridge, whatever works. The main thing is that you find a way to make and keep a schedule. Once you have a schedule in place you will find that things go smoothly. It might be difficult to make a schedule in the beginning but overall it will lead to a more happy and enjoyable living arrangement.
Share the Chores
You don’t want to feel like you are doing everything around the apartment just like your roommates don’t want to feel this way. After you make your schedule, figure out who likes to do what! If you are all doing the chores that you enjoy it won’t seem like so much work. If there’s one or two things that everyone hates to do, take turns (write it on the schedule) so that no one is stuck doing that one thing they hate all of the time!
When you share spaces with roommates it’s important not to hold them to your standards. Everyone is different and unique and expecting someone to do things exactly the way you do them is unreasonable. Be willing to flex a bit on what you think is the “right way”. This also goes for personality traits and friends / family members. Being flexible can help alleviate angry situations and then you can refer to the communication section for further instruction!
A lot of struggles that come with sharing spaces with roommates can be cleared up with a decisive action. Decide BEFORE you start living together if food will be shared or separated, when the rent will be handed in, and if you will be bringing any pets into the home. These can all be detailed in a roommate agreement that you can set up and sign before you begin living together. Once you BOTH understand what is expected it is a lot easier to avoid conflict.