The American Neighborhood isn’t the same as it was 50 years ago. Far too many Americans simply don’t know their neighbors. Meeting and knowing the people who live nearby can create a sense of belonging and shared identity in your local area. Here are some easy tricks and tips to break the ice with your neighbors.
The easiest way to get to know your neighbors is to always be outside. You can go on walks around the neighborhood and introduce yourself to people, tell them which house you live in, what you like about the neighborhood, or ask simple questions about the neighborhood or local restaurants. If you have kids pets, or neither, get up and go for a walk. It’s a much nicer feeling than scrolling though pointless posts on the internet.
Organize A Block Party
Summertime is the best time to have an annual block party. Check with local authorities for permission to close off the street, making the celebration exclusive to folks in your community. You can have multiple barbecues going, a kids bouncy house, music, drinks, etc. You can also ask everyone to prepare a dish and/or bring a game or activity.
Connect With Neighbors Online
An easy way to connect with your neighbors about neighborhood news, events, etc. is to add them on Facebook and create a neighborhood group or add their email to your email address book. This is a good way to spark conversation between everyone and also a good way to organize events or clubs.
Have A Garage Sale
Garage sales are a good way to get neighbors over to your home. Even if your “junk” isn’t all that precious to others, at least you have a way to start a conversation with the neighbors.
Coordinate A Group
Whether it be a book club, running group, hiking group etc., coordinating a group is a great way to get to know your neighbors. You can post flyers in the community or if your community has a community mailbox, post a flyer there.
Organize A Play Date
If you have children or pets, a good way to get to know your neighbors is to organize some time for them to play together on the weekends. Maybe you can all have fun with these 10 DIY arts and crafts for kids.
Ask A Question
One reason nobody really knows each other anymore is because information is just a click away. Instead of looking up reviews on the internet about a local restaurant, get a recommendation from a neighbor. Or, if you have a question about literally anything else, maybe your neighbor will know.
Always Be Communicating
Along with asking questions and just being outside, make sure you always have a topic to bring up. This is the easiest way get a conversation going that can lead to other topics. Communication is also good for your kids. Here’s a great video on how the simple family dinner can have significant the benefits for your children. The importance of being together for dinner.