Many people who try to simplify their life and de-clutter their living spaces find that the most difficult thing to achieve isn’t throwing out everything you don’t need, but rather dealing with the roommate or significant other who doesn’t have the same goals, as you try to achieve simplicity.
Many people who try to simplify their life and de-clutter their living spaces find that the most difficult thing to achieve isn’t throwing out everything you don’t need, but rather dealing with the roommate or significant other who doesn’t have the same goals, as you try to achieve simplicity. This is actually an issue that most people who are determined to making positive changes in their life will face. People want to make changes, but unfortunately, some of the time, the people they live with don’t want to make these changes.
For example, if you have a roommate who likes to eat a lot of junk food when you are trying to eat healthy, it can be really difficult. But there are ways you can still live at peace with a roommate who likes to practice compulsive hoarding.
No. 1: Inspire, inform, patience and asking for helpInspire them: You can begin to show your roommate how great it is to live a simple life and what positive change it has brought. Show them how much easier, calming and pleasing your life has become.
Inform them: Sometimes communication is key, and in the case of trying to convince someone to make a dramatic change in their life with you, it is important to inform them of why you are making this change and how it makes you feel. You can offer them books that have inspired you, but don’t force reading on them.
Be patient: Just because you are determined and passionate for making positive changes in your life as fast as possible doesn’t mean that your roommate is as equally into it as you are. I suggest you be encouraging and maybe sooner or later they will come around. Until then, the worst thing you could do is be negative.
Ask them for help: Making a positive change in your life is important, but it would be a lot more successful if you have the support from the person you are living with. A lot of the time people will help you out if you ask. Maybe even in the process of de-cluttering your room, your roommate can see how simple your side of the room is and how cluttered theirs is, convincing them to follow in your steps. Making this a team effort opens up the possibility of your roommate to change, and sometimes they will.
No. 2: CompromisesIf the first plan doesn’t work, or hasn’t yet, you should work out a compromise. It is not an ideal plan but at least it will keep you sane while living with them, and gives you enough room to breathe and study. Think about it this way: When you understand the boundaries of the room, you are free to do whatever you want–de-clutter or hoard. You can decorate how you want it or clean it up whenever you like. And as for the kitchen, you can agree to clean it up right away after you each use it.
No. 3: MeditateThis is probably the most difficult thing to do especially when your living situation is your worst nightmare. But since you have no other choice, you must accept that you cannot change your roommate and must accept their clutter and mess. It is difficult, but consider that if you don’t, you might become insane and will never find any time to pay attention to your schoolwork, instead always worry about how messy your room is. One way you can do this is if you ask your roommate to de-clutter at least something. After that you can find at least one corner of your room that is just your own and you can meditate there and find the peace that you long for. You can spend time reading in it, relaxing or working.
No. 4: LeaveThis is, of course, the last and final resort. There are times when people grow apart due to lifestyles and different goals. When you are living in the dorms you don’t necessarily choose who you live with, but if you must be with someone who is mentally draining you and causing you to lose all focus on what is important to you, leave before it causes you more harm in the future. If you are in a relationship with someone who you are living with, be it in an apartment or house, and you are seeing the same issues come up–you must consider all options in your relationship: be it breaking up, or just living on your own while staying together.