What do you do when other people's messy living habits drive you crazy? The first thing you need to do is not to take it personally. It's easy to feel like they are intentionally disrespecting you.
But people don't generally sit around thinking of things to do that drive other people crazy - be it neighbors, co-workers, #friends, and the like. Notice I didn't include your #children. That is a different subject, altogether.
So aside from taking it personally, you need to figure out, what about it bothers you. Usually, it is because you do not live this way, it looks bad, and could potentially make your space look unkempt.
But it could be things in your past, such as a sibling, parents, friends, or neighbors that weren't tidy and you didn't care for them. So you might need to dig deep to figure this out, but it's necessary.
Outside of working on your own issues, let's take the example of the neighbors. Some people just can't find the time to clean up things, they have medical or physical reasons why they can't keep up, or they are just too exhausted after work. Others don't have a vehicle or money to have someone take their things to the dump. Some people don't know who to call to have it hauled away. Sometimes getting to the bottom of the problem can help you deal with it better.
But the bottom line is, what can you do about it now? If you have a good relationship with the neighbors you could carefully approach them and offer your help. You could agree to have your #family help their family. You shouldn't have to, but if it really bothering you, then make the offer. Be sure you have a number in the hand of service they can call and the costs involved.
If it isn't too expensive you could even offer to chip in some money. Again, you shouldn't have to, but these kind gestures may keep them from refusing to do something about it. If that doesn't work can always plant trees, build fences, or check with any ordinances in your neighborhood that address these issues and go the legal route.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Cynthia Logan Anthony, Ph.D. is a psychologist and a nationally certified counselor. Learn more at acenterforsuccess.com