I’d understate it if I said I’ve been blessed with very good neighbors for the last 13 years. They are the kind of folks that lean over the fence just to genuinely find out how your day is going and if you need anything.
I try to let a certain openness to permeate all aspects of my life, and that includes being a good neighbor. So over the years of borrowing eggs and sugar, I’ve realized being neighborly is no longer “just a thing” — it’s an art form.
Here are 7 ways to find connection that I’ve found to help you start build neighborly relationships:
1. Be outside.
Not only is it good for you, but being out also makes you approach-ready for conversation with your neighbors. A dog meandering into the yard opens up conversations too.
2. Do face time.
Social media and texting just don’t cut it. Make sure you meet up face to face on a regular basis. There is no screen that will ever be able to replace that human connection, no matter how developed AI gets.
3. Surprise them, and not just on holidays.
Send something over, just because. My neighbor once sent over a slice of coconut cake that I still dream about.
4. Make your house theirs.
I trust my neighbors, so that comes first. They know they are welcome to come over and borrow just about anything. Make them comfortable also makes them feel appreciated and they will reciprocate.
5. Care for their kids and pets.
You never know when you are going to get into a pinch, and need dogs let out, cats fed and kids (toddler through teen) supervised.
6. Keep an eye out.
It’s reassuring to go on vacation knowing someone will check your mail and call someone if they notice your stuff being hauled out to a moving van unexpectedly or smoke coming from your house.
7. Let go of your stuff.
My neighbor regularly comes over for a tool or gadget, and if my husband isn’t home and I don’t know what he’s talking about, I send him off to the garage to look for himself.
Maybe being neighborly isn’t directly a yoga concept, but it is part of the yogic path of caring for all of things around you, and within that creating a better space for you and all you connect with.
Been a good neighbor? Share how it’s done.