How to Relax At Christmas Parties And Keep Your Personal Brand Intact

Christmas parties are an amazing bonding event
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Lunches out, Friday night drinks, summer picnics and office BBQs don’t seem to cause nearly as many embarrassing incidents as Christmas parties do. The gossip after the Christmas party is retold for years and years. It’s not easy to pick your way through this minefield so that you don’t become the next urban legend, let’s see if we can plot a course through it!

Build Great Memories Not Bad Ones

I put my hand up – I am guilty of being tipsy more than once at an office party. I’m pretty sure that I did nothing embarrassing, but I can’t really remember – luckily, nobody else was sober either. I tend to forget everything I do when I get tipsy which is both good and bad. Good because I am sure I’m highly embarrassing and so I’m glad I can’t remember. Bad because well just because YOU can’t remember doesn’t mean that others don’t remember – did I mention that I once woke up engaged after a night out in a Tokyo nightclub? Let’s not even go there!

Have fun with a Christmas fancy dress party. Think this is Blonde Ambition Madonna
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We all laugh when we see celebs that have wardrobe malfunctions. Anne Hathaway, Nichole Kidman and even, the eternally glamorous  Elle McPherson have all made some big wardrobe faux pas over the years. Wearing inappropriate outfits or clothes that just let them down in more ways than one, if you know what I mean. You want to look glam at your Christmas party and so you should. Rock your outfit, but just make sure that it will stay up, not ride up and covers all the bits that your boss should never see. Note to the wise, if it is fancy dress don’t go as a Christmas Tree or sexy Mrs. Santa! Oh yes, I did… remember stylish and sophisticated always win the day.

Get To Know Each Other Better

Mingling with people that you only usually speak to for work is cool. The Christmas party is the place to get to know each other better. You Should mingle outside of your usual work crowd as well. Mingle does not mean… well you know what it does not mean. We all know what it does not mean, but year after year, we go there all the same. Harmless flirting happens all the time in nearly every office across the world over. That guy from Accounts/Maintenance/Internal Control is cute and being flirtatious is a fun pastime, but it shouldn’t be taken any further at the Christmas party. It gives the wrong impression to everyone including him! Dancing shouldn’t become raunchy either. I remember one incident when I was in my early 20s when I was dancing away only to find myself with added bra padding – I hadn’t done anything to encourage that and it’s seriously not acceptable behaviour.

What causes this lack of reserve at Christmas parties? Alcohol and excitement are the main culprits; they are like little devils trying to make you do things that you wouldn’t normally do. Getting so drunk that you throw up, break a limb or make a total fool of yourself is uncool. Those little devils would have us believe that the ratio of water/juice/soda is one glass to one glass the same size full of shots… it isn’t, but they can be highly persuasive.

Get Ready With A Bunch Of The Girls

It's important to make sure that you pace yourself through the day / evening
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These days I’ve found that when I’m getting ready for an office party the best way to prepare for it is to get ready with a bunch of the girls. We get ready together, and we eat whilst we are getting reading and chatting. We often have a glass of wine and some water as well so that we are already in the routine before getting to the venue. Pacing yourself is key to thoroughly enjoying every moment of the event.

The Christmas party is the work event of the year; it’s one of the only functions that everyone makes an effort to attend. A celebration to mark everything that has been achieved as a team in the past year. Now more often than not companies are immortalising these events by having photo booths capturing the moment. Unfortunately, this means that should you let the little devils have their way your antics may well be captured on film for posterity.

Make sure that you have an awesome time at your Christmas party and that you make memories with your colleagues that you’ll treasure for years to come. Be relaxed, enjoy yourself and remain professional – portray the image that YOU want to be remembered for.

More about Kittie Walker

Born and bred in London, I have a decades-long background in business management working for an international investment bank. In 2007, I left the corporate sector and founded my own company, wanting to provide the kind of services that I’d always felt small business really needed; someone on their own level who’s been there themselves and faced the problems. I love seeing the people I work with succeed in their endeavours. That’s my favourite reward of all.

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