My favorite tweet of all time was penned by Jack McCready, full time BFF and full time Steve Madden boy. It reads: “okay I am so fake to my grandma.” This tweet perfectly sums up the holiday season for me. Let’s face it: holiday parties suck. You’ve managed to avoid these people all year, and now you all have to pretend that you can tolerate each other. So to keep it holly and jolly this season, I’ve got some tips to help you battle the beast that is holiday party season.
1. GET YOUR RÉSUMÉ IN ORDER
“So what are you up to now?”: The inevitable question that your relatives will ask in a condescending tone. Don’t let ‘em get you down: review your accomplishments of the year beforehand so you know exactly what to highlight in your conversations to make bitter Aunt Suzy eat it.
2. KNOW EXACTLY WHEN TO THROW YOUR DRINK
So your family friend threw you some serious shade this year. You want to retaliate, but not in the middle of a classy holiday gathering. If you simply must, take the offender out of earshot of the party before you call them out. Then do what you have to do. You: an upstanding partygoer that refuses to deal with such tomfoolery. Them: a party pooper covered in eggnog.
3. THE LOOK MUST BE RIGHT
Perhaps you’re the “eccentric” one; the one people are expecting to show up in a latex Mrs. Claus costume. As fun as that would be, showing your family that you’re an adult who must be taken seriously is so much more fun. Sometimes the biggest fashion statement is not making a statement at all. Bonus: it will confuse the hell out of the haters.
4. PREGAMING IS IDEAL
I don’t mean getting trashed before your turkey dinner with grandma. A nice pre-party chill sesh with close friends will loosen you up for small talk with your cousins. It’s all about a support system here, and reminding yourself there is actual fun in the world will help you keep the faith during darker times (A.K.A. talking to your great uncle about that mole he had to get checked out last week for like two hours).
5. HAVE AN OUTSIDE PARTY AVAILABLE FOR YOUR TEXT RANTS
Let it all out, it’s good for you. I can’t even count the amount of “omg I am so done why am I here” texts I have sent during holiday gatherings. Make sure you have a friend you can blow off steam with to keep yourself calm, cool, and collected.
6. BE MARIAH CAREY
Mariah Carrey’s All I want for Christmas is You music video. Watch it. Study it. Learn it. You are #festive. You are fun. You are the jolliest person in the room. You can do this. Mariah believes in you.
7. START A FACIAL MUSCLE WORKOUT ROUTINE
Everyone knows that the most dreaded part of these gatherings is the big family picture. Your cheeks will hurt and your eyes will be dry, and they’re bound to catch you at your worst angle. However, if you start toning your facial muscles, and your patience, prior to to the party, you can lessen the physical pain of the whole ordeal.
8. STEP UP YOUR GIFT GAME
Think about how many pair of socks and weird household gadgets you’re received over the past few years. It’s up to you to raise the bar. Get creative: everyone will take notice, and next year’s gifts will get a noticeable boost in effort.
9. GIVE ANY +1’S THE LOWDOWN BEFOREHAND
If you have some especially sensitive relatives, your party guest needs to know. Make a Powerpoint presentation detailing the ‘do’s and don’ts’ of the event to avoid any missteps. Will they be weirded out by the fact you conveniently had a projector readily available for moments like this? Maybe. Will they get through this party without everyone turning on them? Absolutely.
10. FUN OR NOT, FAMILY IS STILL FAMILY
Even though they might not “get” what you’re doing, and their holiday antics might be embarrassing, your relatives are happy you’re here. Be glad you have people that love you this holiday season, bite the bullet, and show them that deep down you love them too.