Having lived in ‘the Bungalow’ now for nearly three weeks we have found that tiny living is an exercise in patience, understanding, balance, love, and friendship. We are both quite sure there are many more lessons to be learned but we have figured out a few things already.
Some days just making it through the day is a task all its own. It is quite difficult to have private moments or quiet times or even just moments in the peace of solitude in a small space. It requires adjustment in order to survice and mapping out some minor adjustments for both you and your partner will less the stress of too much closeness!
The biggest thing to remember when opting for a Tiny House is that beyond the adventures of planning and building is a lifetime of living. You can’t simply move or relocate from one another. Remember, this is your partner we are talking about. It is not unheard of for closeness and time together to be the causes of emotional separation.
Consider these points though as conversations to be had and lessons to be learned prior to driving even the first nail in your tiny space!
- Have Your Own Space
Have your own small space where you can do your own work in your home. I am not referring to the place you call your “office” or where you telecommute from (should you be a telecommuter.) I am referring more to a place where you can read, knit, write, study, email, etc. Once these spaces are established do your best not to cross them unless given permission by the other. Respect your partners space. This small “corner” will allow you to keep your sense of individuality.
- A Haven in your Home
A little small haven in one corner is enough if one of you needs some space alone. If your spouse goes for the bedroom and you feel like he/she wants to have some space you can always stay out and say that you need to work on something. Make sure that your personal space will not hamper your spouse’s activities like his bedtime if you choose to have this space in the bedroom of your Tiny House. One of you may stay awake and sleep some time later or wake up before the other one does to have some time for yourself.
- Silence Can Be Golden
Crystal and I don’t always want to watch the same thing or listen to the same music. It is at these time that a good set of headphones allow us to enjoy our own audio/video space without driving the other crazy. Try to map out a movie night or play music you both like when prepping a meal or hanging out. But don’t overstep that boundary and assume that your partner likes ABBA the way you do!
- Keep Your Personal Activities
I love going to the bookstore on an overcast day and pouring through magazines. Crystal likes to read cook books and drink Chai. There is no reason we have to find a common ground for this. I can go to the bookstore and she can stay at home. A few hours apart will give us time to miss each other, if you will, and much needed time to focus on our own selves and our own interests.
- Explore Your Community
There are a number of activities in neighborhoods, communities, etc. that can be shared by one as easily as two. Drinks or coffee with neighbors over good conversation allows you both to participate but not always have just each other to talk to. There are also clubs and civic organizations that give each spouse a chance to express him/herself in an individual way. Take part in these.
Perhaps the most important thing to remember though is that living is about sharing. You fell in love with your partner for your differences as much as your similarities. Remember those qualities that drew you to him/her and allow your parter to continue those without hovering or cramping him/her.
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