The holidays will be here soon, and for many of us, that means holiday parties! But, if you find yourself hosting one of these festive gatherings, it’s not all mistletoe and merriment. There’s the guest list, the menu, the beverages, the decorations, the party favors… the list goes on and on.
And, if you live in a small house or apartment, you’ll need to figure out how to arrange your home to prevent your guests from feeling like they’re packed in like a can of sardines. Don’t hyperventilate at the logistics of hosting a party in a small space, not when we’ve got your back.
Just take a deep breath and follow these easy tips. We promise your guests will be too busy having fun to worry about anything other than grabbing another slice of pumpkin pie.
1. Reduce Your Immediate Stress
Tackling this major project without reducing your already exasperated stress load will not generate the Christmas magic you’re hoping for. Start with deep breaths and tense your muscles. As you un-tense, imaging the stress melting off your body. Then follow this up with some needed self-soothing. Eat some chocolate, drink some water, and call a friend you miss. Do the things you need to feel less burnt out and refreshed.
Once you’ve brought the holiday stress down, keep it low by remembering your reason for the season. Maybe your coworkers are depending on you, or you want your kids to have good memories, or you’re excited for the ball to drop and 2021 to finally end. Whatever your why, hold on to it tight.
2. Get Rid of Clutter
We talk about clearing out the clutter frequently on the StorageMart blog—and for a good reason. Clutter is a major source of stress in our lives, and it’s also surprisingly difficult for some people to deal with. According to some experts, the reason for this may be because our brains are psychologically hardwired to collect clutter and junk. Before you do anything else, check out our post: 3 Steps for Removing Clutter from Your Home, then move on to the next tips for hosting a holiday party.
3. Rearrange Your Furniture
There’s no law that says your coffee table needs to sit exactly where you’ve had it for the last three years. There’s also no reason your dining room table can’t moonlight as a living room table. Our point is the way your furniture is configured for everyday use isn’t necessarily ideal for hosting a holiday party.
For smaller parties, try to group seating around one focal point, like a table or an entertainment stand – trust in the communal power of the “big circle.” For larger guest lists, move your furniture to the outer walls to give everyone some room to move.
Remember, when your party is over, you can always put your stuff back the way you had it. Or, not… maybe you’ll find you love hosting now that you’ve got space for the people you care about.
4. Place Food and Snacks Strategically
Here’s a simple truth: people want to go where there are yummy things to eat and drink. If you put all of your food in one spot, guess what you’re going to get—a yuletide traffic jam. Instead, use end tables, side tables, coffee tables, and other surfaces as mini snack stations throughout your apartment or home. This will help reduce congestion, and it also promotes mingling as guests migrate from one zone to the next.
5. Add Layers to Serving Stations
There is a reason big cities tend to have lots of tall skyscrapers. When real estate is limited, building up is the only option left. The same goes for your serving stations. Use cake stands to instantly add more surface space to your tables and countertops.
6. Take it Easy on the Decorations
We aren’t saying you can’t liven up the décor with a few tasteful flourishes, but there’s no reason to convert your home to a winter wonderland. Choose one or two small centerpieces and look for decorations that can be mounted on walls or hung from the ceiling. This will reserve your valuable surface space for more important things… like food and drinks.
Limiting your décor is another great way to keep holiday stress minimized. Putting up and taking down decorations takes a lot of effort and a lot of storage space. Keeping it to a few favorite items you use every year is an excellent way to be festive and functioning.
’Tis the Season to be Merry, Stress-Free, and Organized!
The holidays can be a stressful time, but if you start clearing out your clutter and getting organized now, you will have one less thing to worry about when hosting your friends and family.
Plus, did you know there are other benefits to home organization than just freeing up extra space? It’s true — experts believe organization at home may be linked to everything from your diet to your overall sense of well-being. Finally, after you get organized, learn how to reduce stress even more through the practice of mindfulness.
In the worst-case scenario, you can always shove your problems in a storage unit. Okay, maybe not all your problems, but you can store any extra furniture or holiday decorations that are cramping your space. Plus, with flexible monthly leasing, you only need to store with us until your in-laws leave. Find a unit near you and start being merry once again.