June 22nd, 2017
Mr. Rogers famously said, “Won’t you be my neighbor?” For many people, the answer is “no” — but it doesn’t have to be that way.
According to the General Social Survey, one-third of people have never interacted with their neighbors. There are plenty of reasons for this trend — everything from bustling work schedules to the influx of youth sports leagues and other activities. There also are plenty of opportunities to buck the trend.
Here are three simple ways to get to know your neighbor once you see that “apartment for rent” sign come down:
It’s comfortable to hide behind the blinds, peering through now and then to see what type of furniture and workout equipment your new neighbor owns. Instead of gawking, try helping out. Some of life’s most interesting conversations and best first impressions stem from sweat-inducing, shoulder-to-shoulder labor.
Before the day is done, leave your new friend(s) with an invitation to a home-cooked meal at your home. Perhaps even make it a group event, giving your neighbors a nonthreatening opportunity to meet additional folks.
Never underestimate the power of a lovingly prepared, strategically offered batch of brownies as a successful tool for meeting neighbors. Baked goods warm the heart and fill the stomach.
Making a good first impression is as important at home as it is in business. Often it really is the thought that counts — not the quality of your butter-crème frosting.
If you really want to know your neighbors, your conversations will center on their lives, not yours. You’ll ask questions more than giving stories. You’ll listen instead of thinking about your next sentence.
Breaking the ice often is difficult, but it’s always easier if you have authentic interest in your neighbors’ well-being. In other words, truly getting to know your neighbors starts and ends with caring about their lives. The rest will naturally fall into place — and friendships will follow.
Are you looking for great community in a friendly neighborhood? Consider the apartment homes at ICO Fairbourne Station in Salt Lake City.