A clean room makes a happy roommate
August 17, 2020
Nobody likes a smelly roommate. Nobody likes a smelly anything, really, but while you might have been willing to sacrifice a few social interactions in favor of skipping a shower or two back home, the stakes are a bit different when you’re sharing a room with a new person. Not only is it your own comfort that factors into your personal habits now, but the person that you share a living space with as well. This topic extends much further beyond your own hygiene but the way you take care of your shared space as a whole. You don’t have to be great friends with your roommate, but being courteous and respectful enough to each other will go a long way in reaching the working relationship that is essential for roommates.
That being said, the first and most essential step is personal hygiene. Please take regular showers. Your roommate will no doubt start to despise you otherwise. If not even for the sake of your roommate, then do it for yourself. I’ve been in plenty of work-driven funks where I think I need to stay glued to my computer all day, grinding away at whatever essay or project needs to be completed. You’ll feel down on yourself in the midst of it and maybe even experience a few panic-sweats when a piece of technology doesn’t work right, or you don’t think you’ll be able to finish your project in time. Nothing helps to calm you down and bring you back to work fresh and rejuvenated like a quick shower.
I’ll also take this time to say, if your roommate is the smelly one, you must address it in a respectful and understanding way. Do not get mad or talk down to them; this will only make your relationship worse. Be clear about what the problem is, and help them solve it. This is only going to make your living situation easier.
Aside from personal hygiene, it’s also extremely important to keep on top of garbage and trash. Do not let it pile up inside your room, especially if it is food-related trash. These will not only begin to smell, but it also creates clutter that must be avoided by everyone else in the shared space. When most of the freshmen dorms you will be inhabiting are already small and cramped as it is, you don’t want to take up any more space than is necessary.
On a final note, the best way to get along with your roommate, somebody you have to trust to make your life easier, is to be trustworthy enough to not cause problems for them as well. If you aren’t offending them with any odors or unnecessarily taking up space that they need, you’re off to a better start than many.