Holiday Survival Guide: 7 Tips to Keep You From Turning Into a Grinch

Holiday Networking Cheat Sheet

Yesterday I had an introvert tell me about a party some long-time friends were holding. She didn’t want to go to it. In fact, she was dreading it and also dreading the prospects of saying “no.” I think she was holding out for a good case of the bubonic plague.

Does this sound like you?

Rather than avoiding the various social gatherings this month, try some of these ideas. Think of this as your very own holiday survival guide:


1. Focus On the Positive

No matter if it’s a work holiday party or your neighborhood bash, there has to be at least one positive thing you can think of. Maybe it’s getting to know someone better, good food or the new outfit you wanted to buy. You control how you think about these things; pick out something you like and make that your focus. (Like this thought? Tweet it!)


2. Think About Only One Person, Not the Whole Group

Introverts can easily get overwhelmed by the thought of hanging out with a whole group of people they don’t know. Think about the one person you do want to spend time with. Maybe it is the work peer you used to love working with. It will give you a chance to reconnect with someone you like but may have lost contact with.


3. Don’t Try to Work the Room

This isn’t who you are, so don’t even go there.


4. Give Yourself a Break

Our energy gets used up quickly being around other people, so you should plan on retreating to a quiet space. Simply spending some time in your own thoughts and taking a breather can help you be engaged and positive throughout the remainder of the event.


5. Create Your Strategy

One thing we introverts are great at is thinking and making plans. Think in advance about the parts you dislike of going to a holiday event. Then, think about ways you could improve your behavior or outlook. We are all different in the things we dread. Some people would simply just prefer to watch TV or read a book. If that’s the case, consider talking about your favorite TV programs or books.


6. Use the Event As an Experiment

Take on the persona of Thomas Edison. He had 10,000 failed experiments, but he never thought of them as failures; he viewed them as opportunities to learn and improve. Figure out a couple of things you’d like to do differently and test them out. It won’t kill you, and it may just be the thing to turn around your view of these things.


7. Admit You’re a Stranger

I recently tried something that worked extremely well. I approached a group and asked, “Can a new person in town join in?” Everyone gave me a hearty welcome and asked me all sorts of “new person” questions. I felt very warm and fuzzy as a result.

You may never be totally in love with going to parties. I know I’m not. But I think you should aspire to enjoy yourself while you’re there. I think these suggestions can help you improve your outlook.

What’s your go-to party survival tip? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Image: flickr

Brought to you by Dorothy Tannahill-Moran – dedicated to unleash your professional potential.

About Dorothy

Dorothy Tannahill-Moran is the Introvert Whisperer, Career & Leadership, speaker and author.

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