We are social creatures; however, sometimes it can be overwhelming to plan a get-together at your place, even if it’s only close friends and family. Not to mention the challenges over the past two years—namely social events, quarantine, and fear—pushing us to be a bit less outgoing than normal.
Whether you’ve been craving a bit more human interaction or you’re finally more comfortable with having people over and planning fun events again, here are a few simple tips to help you plan a seamless (and fun!) event at your home.
1. Start With The Basics: Date & Time
If you’re going to have a get-together at your place, this is (of course) the first step. You need to pick a date and time that works for everyone you want to invite. . .but at the same time, you don’t want to dictate your event around everyone either.
While it’s great—and important—to schedule your event around commitments and obligations of the central people involved, sometimes you have to prioritize yourself and/or immediate family (especially if things are getting complicated with different schedules).
What works for you may not work for everyone (and that’s okay!). Just be honest with yourself about who you want and recognize that you may miss out on having some people there if you go with a date that’s less open. Remember that you can always celebrate with other people at a separate time, too, and not miss out on anything!
2. Choose A Theme
A great way to make your party more fun and memorable is to choose a theme. This can be anything from a beach party to 80’s retro – the sky’s the limit! Once you’ve chosen your theme, you can start planning decorations, food, and activities that will fit with it.
If you’re not sure what theme to choose, here are a few ideas:
- A picnic party with a summer theme
- Costume party complete with full outfits
- A movie night with a themed menu and decorations
- An Olympic party with games and activities
- A holiday party – Christmas, New Year’s, etc.
3. Plan Your Food & Beverages
One of the most important aspects of any party is the food and drinks. If you’re hosting a more casual get together, snacks and drinks is fine. But if you’re throwing a more formal party, you’ll need to plan a menu and make sure you have enough food.
Here’s a simple idea that can work as an excellent side dish or appetizer: Mexican corn salad!
When planning your menu, be sure to consider any dietary restrictions that your guests may have. You can either ask them in advance or provide a variety of options so that everyone can find something they like.
And don’t forget the drinks! If you’re serving alcohol, be sure to have plenty of non-alcoholic beverages as well for those who don’t drink or are driving.
4. Plan Your Decorations
Your decorations will depend on the theme you’ve chosen for your party. For example, if you’re going for a beach party theme, you’ll want to think about shell-themed plates, sunglasses, and maybe even some inflatable palm trees! For an 80’s retro party, you’ll want to find some old posters and put them up around your place. And for a holiday party, you might want to decorate with lights, garlands, and a Christmas tree.
Whatever theme you choose, be sure to make your place look festive! This will help get your guests into the party mood as soon as they arrive.
5. Check In On & Update Your Bathrooms
This one is significant if you’re hosting a party for a large group of people. Ensure that there are enough bathrooms for everyone and that they’re in good condition. While you don’t have to completely renovate your bathroom, it’s generally a good idea to stock toilet paper and bathroom necessities, deep-clean the surfaces, and fix any lingering plumbing issues.
Depending on the size of your party, you may even want to consider renting an outhouse or port-a-potty to avoid having your guests wait in line to use the bathroom while your party is going on.
These are just a few tips for planning the perfect get-together at your place. Especially after a few years of disconnect, hopefully this event (and others) will bring you out of your shell and into a healthier mindset!
For other tips related to social activities and fun, head to our Mental Health Tips page!