Agree on order
Moving together or living under the same roof for many years, most of us do not actually have "that" confidential conversation about the order in which everyone identifies their triggers, preferences, habits and weaknesses. Warn the roommate, honestly declare our boundaries, voice a categorical “no” - this is not the most popular strategy: many of us avoid uncomfortable conversations and wait until an acute situation arises on its own or everything, on the contrary, dissipates without much discussion.
The result is an annoying pile of unwashed dishes, guests at inconvenient times, bad habits, shifted things and missed cleaning schedules. In fact, often we unconsciously try to push the boundaries in our favor and do not want to admit the obvious fact: that being close to a particular person may not be the best idea and will simply ruin the relationship. "Suffer - fall in love" is certainly a familiar pattern of behavior, but, as you know, patience can burst at an unpredictable moment, and the constant active conflict at home deprives the basic sense of security.
Don't like noise after a certain hour? Can't help but invite guests? Do you want to smoke on your balcony or hate smoking at home? Do you like to shower for half an hour? Growing a tropical garden? Do you devote to cooking every night? Don't eat meat and don't want to be cooked in your kitchen? Be honest about your habits in everyday life, ideas about hygiene and categorically unacceptable behavior. Do you have a favorite mug, do you prefer to store food in certain places and clean up on certain days, do the crumbs on the table infuriate you and do you think that home is primarily a place of relaxation? The cleaning schedule and separation of influence zones are not suitable for everyone. Honest agreements are the first step to knowing what kind of person you will be living with and whether you can avoid debilitating conflicts over order and shared responsibilities.
It is important to think over the general schedule so that everyone living in the house gets the feeling of comfort when they need it most. First of all, this concerns the silence mode: loud music, waking up at different times, arguments over the bathroom and kitchen are always a potential irritant. Household chores are best done by day or week, or done together if they are fun. Someone likes to clean before going to bed, someone likes to devote the whole day to putting things in order, someone likes to cook breakfast for a long time. If one of you is always in a hurry, and the other is never in a hurry, you definitely have something to discuss by agreeing on a schedule. Playing sports, hosting, home events, work and school hours, the need for solitude, the time needed to recover - by discussing the calendar, you not only find out each other's priorities,but you will also acquire a sense of a joint rhythm, in which even different working hours and attitudes towards time will be brought to a common denominator.
Provide free space
A common way of life does not mean at all that from now on all household chores and lifestyle should also be common - everyone needs personal time and space to do their own business, even with a limited area. Free space is not necessarily a lot of empty space or a special layout. This is primarily a conscious designation in the everyday world of our attachments and needs. Most people need at least a small area that they can consider their own: from a shelf in the bathroom and their own mug to a closet with their favorite books, a comfortable chair and a pillow. Not all laconic solutions for the interior give a feeling of their own I, not all beautiful things are functional and comfortable.
It is cruel to make sole decisions about the convenience in common areas, to throw away other people's belongings, shift them without asking, or neglect the habits of another person for the sake of abstract concepts of order and symmetry. It is much easier to divide the common space into zones of order and responsibility: someone prefers to work in the kitchen, someone is responsible for the plants, someone likes to sleep with dim lights or wake up to a certain music. Think about how to realize dreams of your comfort in the interior, without hurting the interests of another, and combine your lifestyle by dividing territories. Everyone needs a little favorite personal corner, even if your interests and views on the home device are similar.
Plan free time
A common life is not only a common space, but also the time that you spend together. The most obvious solution for two or more roommates is to have a common time for joint affairs, and always pleasant ones too. Someone needs to spend a lot of time together, someone a little bit, but a strong and cloudless neighborhood best of all strengthens a positive joint experience. Think about which habits and activities hold you together, and give them space during the week. Childcare, pet walks, skype sessions with friends, guests on Fridays, quiet simultaneous reading sessions, general movie or video games, self-care moments, walks in the nearby park, general sports. Making time for pleasant, unclouded communication is essential in order to avoid alienation and mutual claims.
Take care of each other
Perhaps the most important rule of common life is to try not to bring negative experiences from outside into the common space. As they say, not to break down on loved ones after a hard day and not to involve another person in solving personal problems. Common life often turns into a nervous discussion of the news of the day, re-living an unpleasant experience with a person living nearby and constant contact - even at the wrong moment. Protecting each other does not mean shielding oneself from unpleasant conversations or not sorting out the relationship at all: after all, trust is built on the ability to communicate in time what does not suit you.
First of all, this means not discussing with another person, especially in a harsh way, things that are completely unrelated to him. Problems at work, personal frustrations, individual life difficulties, of course, do not negate empathy and the need for support. Another thing is to demand that in your home environment you are given time after time to speak on the same painful issue, or to return home to throw out the day's stress or get revenge for failures in external life. It is really better to do a general morning good (morning hours form the mood for half the day), and in the evening - to recuperate, rather than use the person nearby for emotional service.>