No matter how hard you try and avoid it, it’s almost inevitable that at some point you’ll end up living with stressful people. Some personality clashes are normal and expected when two (or more) people live together, but this is becoming much worse. Whether they make a mess of the shared washroom, leave dirty dishes all over the place, or have no sense of boundaries – whatever the case may be, a stressful roommate can ruin your home environment.

Your home should be a place away from all the stress, not be the source of it.

What do you do when kicking them out or moving isn’t an option? Ignore them? Not possible. They’re too irritating to ignore!

So, what else can you do?

Here are some things you can try to reach a common ground and co-habit a little more peacefully.

Get out of the house

If your roommate makes living in your house miserable, then sometimes it’s a good idea to just take a break from the house itself. Getting out of the house is always good for your health, but it’s essential for your well-being (especially if your roommate is an insufferable monster!). Take a walk in the park, join some classes, go to a cafe – have some ‘me time’. This will help to clear your mind and you’ll come home re-energised.

Confront the issues head-on with your stressful roommate

The easiest way to make a terrible living situation better is by communicating your feelings. If you or your housemate struggle with confrontation, just remember, it doesn’t have to be so difficult! It’s just two adults communicating their concerns with each other. Try your best not to be rude to your roommates and listen to what they’re saying so that you can reach a middle ground without too much hassle. Be kind and talk to them like an adult – you’ll find that it’s a lot less awkward than it seems.

Give your stressed out roommate Some Space

Anyone with siblings will tell you that living with someone 24/7 can make them a hundred times more annoying than they really are. Every little thing will start to get on your nerves- the way they chew, the way they talk, the way they laugh – and living with a someone that you already find irritating only makes this worse! Try and give each other some space, set a time where you don’t disturb each other, or rather, don’t interact with each other. Time apart can really do wonders for people. As the saying goes, absence makes the heart grow fonder.

Vent about that stressful person (with someone else!)

Sometimes all you need is to vent. Instead of yelling at your stressful roommate or letting everything fester inside you, turn to a confidant. A friend, sibling, or parent can really help in a situation like this. It’s okay if they don’t have a solution for you, but it might actually be better if they don’t try to give you all the answers. Sometimes all you need is for someone to listen to your rant and show support.

Find a mediator

If you have exhausted all other options, then you’re left with no other choice than to call for backup. If you are a college/university student, you can get the help of the campus mediators who can sit you both down and get to the root of the problem. Outside intervention can really put things in perspective for both of you and perhaps help you see the other’s point of view. If you’re not a college student, this might be a bit more tricky. Setting up an intervention can help in extreme cases, especially with stressful people. Get some of your mutual friends or acquaintances to help you out by setting up an intervention. But be careful, don’t gang up on your roommate. You want to create a safe environment where everyone can communicate openly.

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