Ah the nostalgia of having your first college roommate. The nostalgia can either refer to a match made in heaven with your roommate turning out to be your best friend for life or being your absolute living nightmare. Regardless if your roommate is your soulmate of a best friend or your absolute enemy, at the end of the day you’re both human and it is really easy to deal with each other at the bare minimum level of keeping both of you healthy and mentally stable. Here are some easy tips to make your year with your college roommate tolerable and decent.
Communicate your likes and dislikes with each other
The most important tip for living with someone is automatically setting ground rules with each other. If you aren’t confrontational with your roommate, chances are you will be miserable and grumpy all the time. Telling each other your basic likes and dislikes at the beginning of the semester creates room for no future argumentative debates in the future and sets reasonable boundaries for neither of you to cross in order to keep you both happy.
Typing on your laptop is louder than you think
One thing about living with another person is your sense of hearing becomes extremely sensitive to everything the other person does. One common activity that every college student does on a daily basis is typing. Typing in a shared room with one other person can be a lot louder than you may think. We’ve all been there when it comes to pulling an all nighter in order to complete an essay, but whether you care or not there’s a good likelihood your roommate who is trying to sleep can hear your typing that sounds like you’re smacking your keyboard. There’s an easy alternative to avoid pissing your roommate off from your noisy all nighter. Most college dorms have a student lounge at the lobby open all night for those who need to pull all nighters or you can always find quiet time in your college library that is typically open 24/7.
Wear headphones or earbuds
A simple tip of consideration is when listening to music, watching a movie, facetiming with a friend is to put on headphones. Neither one of you wants each other to listen in on your personal conversations or the dialogue of your TV show, so it’s best to keep the noise to yourself.
Mutually maintain room cleanliness
An obvious tip is to maintain the cleanliness of your room. Taking out the trash and organizing your clothes into your drawers are two easy and quick tasks that enhance your room space and experience. Neither one of you wants to smell rotting trash or step on each others clothes on the floor, so maintaining each of your personal spaces in the room will equate to a tolerable and hygienic dorm room.
Pound the alarm
Every college student typically needs an alarm to wake up in the morning otherwise you’d sleep through your 8 AM class everyday and inevitably fail. There’s nothing wrong with having an alarm as long as you wake up to your alarm and hit the snooze button. Typically you and your roommate won’t have the exact class schedule, so you have to be somewhat considerate to each others sleeping needs. If you have a roommate that goes into a sleeping coma when they sleep and never wakes up to their blaring alarm, try to wake them up to turn it off. Another alternative is ask your roommate to wear headphones when they are asleep, so only they can hear their iphone alarm go off in the morning. If you don’t get a decent amount of beauty sleep everyday you will inevitably go to class as a zombie everyday and fall asleep during lectures, so make sleep a mutual priority for both you and your roommate.
Turn off the lights at night
Lights are blinding especially if your roommate is trying to sleep and your desk lamp light is still on at 2 in the morning. Most college assignments are done through your laptop, which has its own light making the need for having your desk lamp on unnecessary. Establish a lights off time with your roommate so you both can mutually get a good night’s rest and be able to mentally function in class the next day. If you finish your assignments or notes ahead of time you’ll find your college experience to be less stressful and more easy going.
Communicate expecting guests
Neither one of you wants to greet each others boyfriend or best friend while in your pajamas or in your bath towel. Simply let each other know in advance when you plan to invite guests over, so you can avoid any awkward scenarios or so you can step out of your dorm until their guest leaves. Dorm spaces are small and impossible to avoid the other person in and awkward encounters can make your time with your roommate uncomfortable for the rest of the entire year.
Never borrow or touch anything of theirs without permission
This tip should be without saying, but never borrow or touch each other’s objects without permission. Both of you have your own space in your dorm for a reason and neither one of you wants to see any of your stuff broken or missing. In essence, treat each others spaces with respect and keep to yourself on your side of the room.
Help each other
Most likely both you and your roommate are on a college budget and can’t afford to buy everything, but if you ever do a CVS or Target run asking you roommate if he/she needs anything is common decency and can be small gesture that makes your experience living together more comfortable. In addition, by doing a small favor for your roommate he/she may feel obliged to do you a small favor in the future. Being dependable and considerate to one another will make your time together a positive experience.
A good relationship equals a good year
Lastly, you do not have to do everything with your roommate and become automatic best friends. The bare minimum when it comes to living with your roommate is to simply have a good relationship with one another to avoid any problems with one another. You both are stuck together for a year whether you like it or not and have to see each other the most since you both have to go to your dorm to sleep at the end of the day. Therefore, treat each other with decency and respect and your first college year together will breeze by.