Being neighborly

Many people today, particularly those who have grown up with Facebook and Twitter, have amassed relationships with people around the globe. But at the end of the day, how many are real friends? Friends and friendship mean different things to different people. So it is with being a good neighbor. Being neighborly means different things to different people as well.

In an article titled “Being Neighborly Without Being Nosy,” Rose Alexander explained it this way: “Depending on your personal preferences, being neighborly might mean staying invisible except for a quick wave while getting the mail. Or you might think of someone being a good neighbor when he or she is available to help out with any unexpected need, whether it is to lend an egg or give your child a ride to soccer practice when your car won’t start.”

If we want to be good neighbors, we must seek a comfortable balance with our neighbors, as much as is reasonable and safe. Part of the balance is learning about some of the traditions of our neighborhoods or regions. In some parts of the world it is customary to bring a specially prepared meal for people moving in or when someone has lost a loved one. Opportunities such as these help sow the seeds of conversation that can develop into mutual respect, admiration and even friendship.

Becoming a good neighbor during good times is often simpler than during a crisis or natural disaster. If and when a crisis does arise, requesting help or providing help will be so much easier because of the relationships that have been forged.

A good neighbor is one who is there for his or her neighbors.

A good neighbor is one who helps and serves in good times and bad.

It may start with something as simple as sharing some sugar with a neighbor, yet a small kindness can lead to so much more.