Episode 341 – Top 5 Strategies for Navigating Holiday Parties

Written by Jonathan

The holidays are upon us and if you’re like most people this means going to a lot of social events and parties that you wouldn’t normally be attending. You have your work function, your partner’s work function, family gatherings, kids club events, your club events, parties that have become ‘tradition’ over the years and it wouldn’t be the holidays without going to them. I mean I’m tired of reading this list and I usually like going to these events, I mean who doesn’t want to go to a function where you hardly know anyone and sit in a corner by yourself, while you use wheat thins to slowly shovel brie cheese covered in maple syrup and nuts one mouthful at a time, justifying each bite is okay because you have grapes on your plate. Sounds like a good Saturday night if you ask me, but what happens when this very scenario creeps up every Thursday, Friday and Saturday, night 3 weekends in a row, well you would officially be off the bandwagon as it were, so today I give you the top 5 strategies to navigate this holiday season:

1. Always keep a drink in your hand – Now I know what you’re thinking ‘a drink in my hand’ wooo there’s a weight loss strategy I can get on board with. No, I mean a non-alcoholic drink, preferably water, club soda or something like that, that’s a bit healthier, I mean you can always dress it up with a lime, it is the holidays after all, but I digress, why is this important? When you have a drink in your hand all the time, it makes it really hard to carry a plate of food especially if you need a free hand to greet people and say hello with a firm handshake, okay a single arm hug with the classic double cheek kiss, it’s okay to get a bit wild at these things. When you don’t have the plate of food it will be a hassle for you to get more food.

2. Don’t take a plate of food, this is closely related to number one, we’re trying to create as much friction as possible between you and the food. If you don’t have a plate you have to get up and go to the table which means breaking away from your deep and meaningful conversation with the one person you have something in common with at the party, and you don’t want someone else to slip in there while you’re gone.

3. Have meaningful conversations, it’s really hard to have a meaningful conversation when there’s a jumbo shrimp hanging out of the side of your mouth. Now, meaningful conversations can be challenging to get started, but if you can get past the first couple lines of small talk they’re definitely worthwhile. How do you do that? I’m glad you asked, you ask someone a question, you listen to their response with intention, then you follow it up with another question about their response and you keep doing that getting more specific each time, but Jonathan then it sometimes starts to feel like an interview, you’re right it can, but that probably means your questions aren’t based enough on what the other person just said, or you’re not interjecting enough relatable personal stories as you go along. I’ll stop here because I’m not a conversation expert, but in my experience nothing has been more helpful than, saying this, ‘I don’t understand that, tell me more about it.’

4. Easy on the booze. My dad has a saying that a very much appreciate, ‘alcohol never made anyone smarter’ which means if you’ve had more than a drink or two it’s probably hard to have the aforementioned meaningful conversation and it’s definitely harder to not stick your face directly in the chip bowl. I’ve found the easiest way to not drink at a party is to volunteer yourself to be the designated driver, then other people have to rely on you and it’s much easier when you’re responsible for the safety and wellbeing of other people. Speaking of safety and wellbeing, this brings us to number 5.

5. Dance like your life depended on it, if you’re dancing, you’re not eating, you’re not drinking, you’re doing an aerobics workout in disguise and we all win when you do an aerobics workout, in disguise, but no your limits and please dance within them.



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