Holiday Get-togethers Part 2 New Year’s Eve Parties

As I write this article, I have tears in my eyes because I’m going to miss 2018 so much! Not really, but if I didn’t have somewhere to go on New Year’s Eve, or didn’t have any friends to ring in the new year with, I probably would be crying. You see, I’m one of those introverts that likes to go to parties sometimes. I’m also the kind of introvert who doesn’t mind waking up alone in my own bed the next morning.

A New Year’s Eve Party, the type of gathering that is the subject of this week’s article, is different from a family Christmas gathering. First, you were invited, and acted of your own free will to click “will attend”. Second, you don’t have to talk to anyone you don’t want to talk to. You’re not likely to inherit anything from anyone at this kind of party, so at least that pressure is off.  With that being said, I have some funny tips for you if you’re going to a house party this New Year’s Eve.

Arriving at the Party

Be the First or Second one there. Yes, you’re early, but as an introvert this is key. This way you get the one-on-one time you want catching up with the host(s), and you’re not playing any games yet because there aren’t enough people.  Also, you get to be first in line for the appetizers.  The appetizers are warm, and you don’t need to question whether attendees have washed their hands properly. One caveat here: don’t be so early that you’re there in time to help the host get dressed.

If you feel awkward about being there early, do your best to make conversation and be helpful. You could help put out the dessert you brought, re-arrange the dessert table, carry a chair from one end of the living room to the other, or fluff the couch cushions. All the while, take note of where your exits are, just like in Part 1 of Get-Togethers, you’re doing this in case of fire or super-awkward social situations.

Enjoying the Party

Blend in – I have found I was pretty good at blending in with my surroundings throughout my lifetime. I am so good at it in fact; that getting noticed when I wanted to be noticed was the hard part. Thus, I may be considered an expert on this topic.

I’ll tell you how you can even disappear in a noisy crowd – this actually works! Let’s say you’re pretty proud of yourself for talking to strangers and not being awkward about it, but you need a break. It’s not polite to leave, plus you’re having a good time: People are laughing at your jokes and they’re remembering your name.

Find a chair somewhere in the back of a room, or squeeze yourself in at one end of the couch (not the middle, because then people will try to include you in conversation). You can simply listen. You don’t need to say anything because you’ve come around mid-conversation. You have at least a few minutes until they run out of things to say on the topic, or get to a point where you can be included.

Party Questions (more questions ?!?)

It’s important to remember that at a NYE party, there will be people who want to get to know you better, and they will ask questions. They’re not trying to pry into your personal life, they’re (most of the time) just showing interest, which is normal.

Questions you could be asked at a NYE party. Warning, some of them may be rather personal. I have bolded those ones.

  1. I think I met you at last year’s party here. What’s your name again?
  2. How do you know [insert hosts names]? This question does sound like this person is skeptical as to whether you should even be at the party and may put you on edge. Remember that they may be the one who isn’t supposed to be there and they’re covering up for that fact by putting the spotlight on you. Or they are making conversation because they haven’t thought of anything else yet. You’ll figure it out.
  3. What do you do? (they’re asking about your job/ career/ business, not what do you do on Mondays normally)
  4. How have you been? Or How have you been since I saw you last? And because I like to be funny, asking me this question could evolve into something like this:

a.   When did you see me last?

b.   I don’t remember.

a.  In that case, I’ve been good. How about yourself?

b.  Can’t complain. Hey…

What happens next depends on whether the introvert in the conversation speaks next, or if the extravert does.

The Introvert says:

“Where’s the bathroom?” (see Part 1 of Holiday Get-togethers for more on this)

Non-Introvert (even if it’s because of the wine), who is simply looking for a good time:

“I have to go to the bathroom. Wanna come with me? Huh? There’s only one bathroom?  Oooh…let’s get more drinks too, and see if anyone else wants to do karaoke with us! Yay! Karaoke! I’m going first! Hey (to 3 other friends close-by): we’re going to the bathroom and then we’re doing karaoke. Wanna join?”

I’d like to thank this person for making the party even more fun, and for making me listen to them sing.

The Countdown

If you’re at a house party, you’re going to need someone to keep track of what time it is, and get people to countdown all at once. This can be stressful, so don’t volunteer for this job. The “timer” shouldn’t start getting people together for the countdown too early, because party-goers will get distracted, go back to their conversations and games, and they’ll miss the countdown. If the timer is too late, guess what – the timer blew it. Everybody missed midnight. I recommend that the “loud friend” does this job at a house party. They yell. People listen. Nobody misses midnight. Mission accomplished.

Midnight

I’m not talking about the perfect time to leave a NYE party.

I’m talking about that sometimes awkward tradition of….ahem… kissing someone at midnight.  What does a person do about that? Especially a single, (albeit attractive) introvert who came to the party on her own? My advice? Go back to that bit about knowing where your exits are (and what your limits are). In my opinion, you can just hug people. Maybe even wave at them, and smile. Or simply say “Happy New Year!” to them. You don’t need to have somebody to kiss at midnight. Talk about making things awkward when it was all going so well! Does anybody even know where that tradition came from? I say finish off your drink, have one more handful of snacks, sing one last song, dance one more dance, and then go home. The hosts want to go to bed.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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E-mail kathryn@kathrynreichheld.ca Hours Contact me anytime and I'll get back to you as soon as possible.
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