Noisy Neighbor? Take Back Your Life!

If a noisy neighbor is making your life a nightmare, you don't need to suffer helplessly. Take measures to protect your sanity.

When dealing with noisy neighbors, naturally your first thought is how to get them to change their ways so that their noise stops intruding in your life. But the plain truth is that most of the time, efforts to change other people's behavior are not very successful, unless they are actively involved with you in seeking a solution.

Part of the reason noise problems can be so frustrating and infuriating is that they are outside our control. We feel powerless to stop the invasion, and the feeling of helplessness is heightened when other people who are causing the noise are oblivious to our agony and will do nothing to stop it. For your own sanity's sake, turn your attention to actions that you control, things you can do right now to directly change your environment. You can't control what your loud neighbors do, but you do have some other tools at your disposal:

More noise-reducing ideas can be found here.

This doesn't mean you need to give up on the idea of coming to an agreement with your neighbors to reduce the noise; you can still work with them toward a solution you can both live with, enlisting the help of the legal system if it's appropriate in your situation. But in the meantime, you can minimize the impact the noise has on you, and the resulting reduction in stress puts you in a better frame of mind to consider the problem realistically and to deal with your neighbors without losing your cool.

So, continue working with your neighbors to reduce the noise — absolutely! But don't invest all your hopes for relief on their willingness to cooperate. The more you can do for yourself to reduce their noise's impact on you, the happier your life will be.

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Sarinne Fox
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