January 3, 2020,

Caroline accepted her new position 300 miles away in a larger city because it was too good an opportunity to pass up.

Given how her career would soon take off, it clearly appeared to be the right decision.

She met interesting upwardly mobile people who thought with big ideas, her income greatly increased and the city’s amenities were mind blowing in comparison to her previous smaller community.

There was one area of concern.

Would she have good neighbors?

In her smaller village, there was a strong sense of community and great neighbors were up and down the block. It was the kind of neighborhood that if you got sick, someone would bring you over some soup.

Her new neighborhood was not like that at all. Until she saved up some money for a down payment on a Condo in a local new build, she was resigned to live in an apartment.

It wasn’t that the people there were bad, they just minded their own business.

All of the time.

Caroline wasn’t sure what to do to inspire her neighbors to be more communal.

What could she do to energize her immediate residents?

This is a good question for her to answer and the starting place is to ask herself the question, what makes for a good neighbor?

Life quests always start with self and the beginnings of acquiring good neighbors is to be one yourself.

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Common sense dictates that you don’t place loud music with a heavy base at night, hang outside laughing at the top of your voice, especially at night, keep your immediate area clean and when people walk past you, take the opportunity to say hello.

Don’t wait for them to do it.

Some people are afraid that if you become a little too friendly that you open the door to receive unwanted attention from the neighbor from hell.

In television or movies they tend to fall into two categories. Very nosey or potentially harmful.

Bewitched is an American television sitcom fantasy series, originally broadcast for eight seasons on ABC from September 17, 1964, to March 25, 1972. It is about a witch who marries an ordinary mortal man, and vows to lead the life of a typical suburban housewife.

The show enjoyed great popularity, finishing as the number two-rated show in America during its debut season along with staying in the top ten for its first three seasons.

One of our heroine’s neighbors was Gladys Kravitz.

As the fan inspired team at bewitched.fandom.com shares, “Gladys Kravitz is extremely nosy, frequently peeking through her curtains at the Stephens’ home. She is convinced that there is something strange going on in their household (and indeed there is, for Samantha Stephens often uses witchcraft that creates unusual events, and the Stephens’ witch-and-warlock relatives come and go from the house), and she would yell “ABNER!”, referring to her husband, although she can never adequately prove her assertions to him.”

We loved watching Gladys because she was indeed funny, often seeing things so unbelievable from Samantha the beautiful witch that no one would actually believe her.

With a potential neighbor like her, no wonder the other neighbors would just mind their own business to avoid any potential intrusions.

The other extreme is the dangerous neighbor.

Be too friendly and look who you’ve invited inside your home, even after you have locked it.

Or you inside of theirs, especially after they’ve locked it.

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The Girl Next Door is a 2007 American horror film adaptation of Jack Ketchum‘s 1989 novel of the same name. The film is loosely based on true events surrounding the torture and murder of Sylvia Likens by Gertrude Baniszewski during the summer of 1965.

And here we thought 1965 was a very neighborly time.

Yes those are extremes.

Your experience will fall somewhere in the middle and middle is good especially if you try some of the following suggestions.

The informative group at magistra-club.ru educates, “The first quality that good neighbors should have is to be respectful. Respect is the most important aspect of being good neighbor. Neighbors should respect your space and privacy in order to live in a peaceful environment. Being a respectful neighbor means not invading your personal space as well as your property.”

That makes perfect sense.

You can offer all of the friendship you want but if you are not respectful, your neighbors will avoid you. Life brings enough troubles our way, why potentially add to it?

The experts at psychologytoday.com add, “Put simply, reciprocal altruism is the helping of another with an implicit (unstated) agreement of having the help paid back. If you scratch my back, you can rest assured that I’ll scratch yours when called upon.”

Yes be kind to your neighbors and they will tend to be kind back to you.

In terms of our personal experience in living in a metropolitan environment, good neighbors look out for one another and communicate privately when it comes to crime.

They also get organized and when it comes time to call the police, one by one they all do it so the police will find their collective calls more believable than if one person alone called.

Every now and then, try and organize a group eat or potluck. Maybe even go as a group to a local restaurant for lunch.

“Love thy neighbor – and if he happens to be tall, debonair and devastating, it will be that much easier.”…Mae West

It is important that you take the initiative to just put ideas out there that they may find palatable. Not all of your ideas may work but even if one does, now you will help build a sense of community.

If you are new to a city, your neighbors can make your life a lot easier by explaining to you the lay of the land, things to avoid and positive things to take advantage of.

They can also introduce you to great service and repair people who will be fair to you and who will not try and take advantage of you.

No woman is an island and at some point, we all may need a little help in our lives especially if we are older and our children live far away or we never had any. With potential health issues always looming, it is good to have a neighbor check in on you from time to time.

Don’t just see it as something someone else needs to do.

After you’ve done the basics of being respectful to boundaries, which is critical, then try taking the initiative to suggest ideas yourself. That is opening for great things to happen.

Taking these basic steps may make a neighborhood in a large city feel like a warm and friendly one in a smaller community.

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