Thanksgiving through New Years is open season for holiday parties, office celebrations, neighborhood open house get-togethers, and grand-scale family gatherings. If you are male and single, these events can be great opportunities to meet people or potential mine fields, depending on your perspective. Follow these four savvy holiday party survival tips and you might just end up having fun instead of dreading every invite.
1. A party is just a party.
Even though most of us get more social invites during the hectic holiday season than over the rest of the year, the whole point is to get together with people you enjoy and have fun. If you can spare a couple of hours spruce yourself up a bit and drop in for a visit. If you feel time pressure or would rather not go, don’t accept the invite. Of course if your boss expects perfect attendance at his annual soiree you may need to suck it up, put on a tie, paste a cheerful smile on your face, and make an appearance.
2. Scan for mistletoe before crossing the threshold.
If you are not on the make, or just want to avoid swapping spit with people you don’t know avoid the mistletoe altogether. If you prefer not to snog the man or woman standing close at hand that’s ok. If you want to show you are available and open to contact you may want to pin a sprig of mistletoe to your lapel to let other singles know you are open to contact.
3. Come with a plan.
Plan to have a good time and you will. What makes you happy? Do you like to skim the buffet and get a drink before you work the crowd? Do you like to tickle the ivories and play holiday music? Do you just like to plant yourself in a comfy couch and watch the crowd? Decide what plan makes you happy and follow it. If you are looking for a date, go for it, but if you just want to enjoy the ambiance do that too.
4. Bring a nice hostess gift.
Take the time to pick out a nice token gift to present to your host or hostess. A nice poinsettia, a bottle of wine, or some other small item will be appreciated. Regardless of your motive for attending their holiday bash you can demonstrate your social graces and guarantee an invite to subsequent events. Of course, if you really don’t want to get another invite you can skip this step.
Holiday parties may be unavoidable, but there is no need to dread them. With the right attitude and a little planning you can survive the experience, and you may even have a good time. Happy Holidays!