Summer has finally arrived! As I live in a high-rise with a pool and sun-deck, summer means pool time! And it also means obnoxious, disrespectful, rule-breaking neighbors. You know who you are.

We have all had these experiences.

The ones who play their music loud because of course everyone wants to listen to their music.

The ones who have bottles and glassware on the sun-deck because of course it does not matter if broken glass ends up in the pool meaning that the pool has to be closed and drained.

And yes, I saw you direct your son to go ahead and urinate in the bushes.

Do not even get me started on my neighbors who denied that their dog barked nonstop. I threw a party the day they moved out!

Enough already! Why can we not use common sense, be respectful, and recognize that our actions impact others? It baffles me. So just in case you are one of “those” people, here are some tips. And if you happen to be dealing with some of “those” people, go ahead and print this out and slip it under their door 😉

1. Say “hello.” Simple as that.

2. Think about your actions from your neighbor’s perspective. Yes, step outside of your self-focus. Do you really think your neighbor wants your child urinating on the sun-deck, mere feet from where they are eating?

3. If your neighbor approaches you with an issue, do not be defensive. Rather, be open to hearing their thoughts and attempt to problem-solve. You may just find a creative resolution and one that leads to more positive neighborly interactions.

4. Provide your neighbor with information about your lifestyle, to help them be more considerate of you as well. Let me tell you, I was thrilled when one of my neighbors let me know that they were having a graduation party and may be loud into the late hours. They even invited me to stop in. Needless to say, I was understanding and not annoyed when the music was still going at 2am.

5. Maintain the area around your home and/or common areas. Keep your lawn mowed. Put the garbage out on pick up day, not three days before. Clean the communal grills. If your dog vomits in the elevator, clean it up.

6. Be helpful. If you see your neighbor struggling to get her two kids and all the groceries into the house, offer a helping hand. If your neighbor just had surgery, offer to bring over dinner. And please, hold the elevator. It is not fun to have the elevator door close right in your face, especially when the other elevator is out of service.

I hope these help, as life is so much more pleasant when we feel social connection and camaraderie.

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