Most of us share our rooms with one or two or even three people, especially students who live in hostels. And because of personality differences, we tend to have disagreements with them.
With some of the tips I would be giving you, you would be able to minimize some of these issues.
1. Set some ground rules.
We all have things we don’t like people doing around us and how we love our environment being. You don’t like people using your cutleries? Tell your roommates. You don’t like when people finish bathing and use their wet feet to step on the room floors? Tell them. You hate when their boyfriend or girlfriend stays for long hours in the room, thereby discomforting you? Sit them down and say, “ Your boyfriend(girlfriend) have been staying over for too long and I can’t do anything when he’s(she’s) around. You don’t like them wearing your clothes? Tell them you do not share clothes. But while doing all these, do not be mean. Say it softly and explain why you feel that way.
2. Do not expect them to be like you in every way.
There is no human being that would be hundred per cent the same as you. Something would not just be right. You may be an introvert and your roommates would be extroverts. You love the room being quiet but your extrovert roommates keep bringing friends over all the time and they turn your room into a Friday night club. So, what can you do about this? Compromise. Extroverts don’t like spending their whole day in the walls of a room so they would probably go out. Use this time while they are out selfishly to do all the things you may want to do in quietness. By the time they would come back, you would have achieved something so you won’t be as angry.
3. Study them for the first few weeks.
Don’t get too jumpy when you first meet them. Yes, you must be happy that you have new roommates but you don’t know anything about this people. They are literally strangers to you. They could be thieves. They could be liars. They could be awesome people. They could be the people that would make the way to your successes in life. They could even be serial killers (but wouldn’t that be cool?). So don’t be too quick to judge. Maybe the reason they listen to loud music at night without their headphones is because of a trauma they suffered a while ago that still hunts their nightmares. This seems like story out of my imaginative mind but trust me, it’s not far-fetched. It could happen. It happens. Put your nerves together and give him or her time so you can get to know each other.
4. Don’t react when your emotions are high up.
What do I mean by that? You know that point where you are so angry that you can kill a person? Don’t say anything because, you can say something you would regret the next day. So, when they wear your favourite cloth out even after you told them not to or when they lock you out of the room for hours, take deep breaths and go to sleep. Hopefully, by the time you wake up, you would be calmer and would be able to sit them down and talk to them.
5. Do not react directly all the time.
When you keep complaining about a particular thing all the time, you start sounding like the troublesome one and that is not what you want, right. If they do something wrong and you complain the first time, the second time, third and fourth, please stop talking. Because if you continue, you would end up being more frustrated. So if they keep going to your wardrobe to take that cloth that you have told them countlessly not to, buy a new lock for your wardrobe and always keep it locked. If they can find a way to get into the locked wardrobe, then, the act can now be called stealing.
6. Don’t bottle up your anger towards them.
When I said 'do not react all the time' , I do not mean you should keep storing up your anger. If you do that, one day, everything will pour out and you may end up doing something you wouldn’t have wanted to do. For instance, imagine you have been quiet about the cloth your roommate always takes and one day, they take it and mistakenly burn it while ironing. Out of anger, you could take all their clothes from their wardrobe and burn it up or worse. So please, do not bottle up anger or you become liable to cause harm.
7. Learn the art of compromise.
This is very important for you to be able to stay with people in a limited space for a certain amount of time. If your roommate has the habit of putting her books on your cooking table, it just might mean that they do not have the space to keep it. If that is the problem, you can give them a small portion of your bookshelf to keep their books. That is just a little illustration of the word, compromise. No one loses. They no longer keep their books on your cooking table and they now have a place to keep their books. You see, everyone is happy.
8. Forgive them when they apologise.
If they accept their mistakes and promise to get better at being a great roommate, forgive them. When you forgive, you feel really good and free. But when you don’t forgive, you start living like a prisoner in your own room. You wouldn’t be comfortable doing anything so please, cleanse your heart every once in a while.
9. Do not be found eating what you called poison.
This is a popular idiom for ‘do not do what you say you don’t like.’ Since you don’t want people to wear your clothes, do not wear other people's clothes. You don’t want them to litter the floor, do not litter it. This is very important and one I practice very well. I try so much not to inconvenience people, so that when I think they are inconveniencing me, I would have the voice to speak out. If I borrow your clothes without your consent, I have no right to tell you not to go to my wardrobe when I am not around. It is as simple as that.