Forget Staff Parties – Just Plan a Christmas Party With Your Friends!
The Christmas season is stressful enough, what with the added pressure of having to shop for gifts, having to decorate for a special occasion and having to spend excruciatingly long dinners with your extended family (including that one, stereotypical uncle with suspect political beliefs). It is stressful enough without the full itinerary of work-related functions.
Yes, it’s understandable why companies do staff parties: it’s a little release of the valve during the holiday season, and a small token of appreciation from ownership and management for the past year of hard work. It’s also – and this is something they might not tell you – beneficial for the bottom line, since it ingratiates you with the company and fosters a sense of communal camaraderie among employees.
By all means, go to your staff party. Have fun and grab all the free food and drinks you can carry. But if you want a true release of the valve this Christmas, a sense of communal camaraderie that isn’t tied to commerce, revive the old tradition of doing a friends Christmas party.
It’s simple: why choose between work colleagues and family members, when there’s a more fun third option? You’ll see your family plenty over the holidays, and lord knows you’ll see your colleagues plenty throughout the ensuing year. Carve some time out to have a special Christmas party with your closest friend group.
Let it be for the same reason as your staff party: to show mutual appreciation, to release the valve a bit and to come together as a unit. In order to do that, you need four simple elements:
- a space
- an activity
- a couple short speeches
- and some good food.
Get away if those familiar spots, like the bar, a restaurant, or one of your houses. This is Christmas after all, and the special occasion calls for a special location.
The easiest way to go about picking a spot is to find one that also offers an activity and also food (a three-for-one, in other words!) Probably the best space for a Christmas party with your friends is an axe throwing facility, which may sounds strange until you consider it.
You get a wide-open space with a private lane. Depending on the facility, there’s usually food and drinks for purchase. It gets you far away from the ordinary ideas, making it a special occasion. And the activity it’s centered on — namely, that you get to bring your friends axe throwing — is insanely fun.
As mentioned, a Christmas party should be a release of the valve, so to speak – a way to relieve that holiday stress and have fun while doing it. Axe throwing fits those bills easily. You could also go to an escape room (though they don’t have food) an arcade bar (though you don’t get much in the way of private space) or a karaoke bar (which is… a mood).
Whatever you do, make sure it’s accessible. All the aforementioned ideas, axe throwing included, are accessible, and don’t require any prior skills or knowledge. They each provide a level playing field.
From there, all there is left to do is coordinate a few quick speeches, and have a few drinks. The “Friend Christmas Party” is a lot like its work counterpart, only more fun and with fewer awkward conversations!