For the past few years, I've experienced a lot of stress when it comes to planning my New Year's Eve. The boyfriend and the oh-so-important midnight kiss I've got covered, but it seems like no one we know is ever doing anything — and if they are, it's not something we're invited to.
This usually leaves us scrambling for plans the week between Christmas and New Year's Eve. And searching high and low for plans exhausts the introvert in me. Plus, it makes me feel lonelier than if I'd just accepted that I had no plans and moved on.
But the funny thing is, I don't even like going out. I hate waking up after a night of drinking, feeling like I've got hit by at least three cars and unable to get anything done for the rest of the weekend. So, why do I even care about going out on December 31? If I had to guess, I'd say it's because society conditions us to feel this way.
This year, I'm spending my New Year's Eve on the couch in sweatpants. One of my resolutions for 2019 is to spend more time relaxing, so why not honor that by welcoming the new year in complete self-care mode?
My boyfriend and I mentioned this a few times over the Christmas weekend, and naturally, we were met with shock. We're too young to spend New Year's Eve watching Marvel movies and drinking wine! What's gotten into us?!
These reactions made me realize just how much we stress going out and partying on certain holidays — and just how ridiculous that is. It's like we party out of obligation instead of to actually have fun.
I mean, if downing beers and dancing is your thing, you do you. But plenty of us don't enjoy loud bars and binge drinking, and it seems silly that we should pretend to just because it's a certain day of the year. It seems even sillier when you consider that most of us binge drink on December 31, then plan to be healthier versions of ourselves on January 1.
If you're not going out on New Year's Eve, don't sweat it. It's not going to ruin the upcoming year for you, and you might even enjoy staying in. If you're doing something you like to do, that's all that matters.
And if you are going out, enjoy the heck out of it. But don't make people feel weird or uncomfortable because they're not doing the same things as you. Just because something is considered the norm doesn't mean we should all just mindlessly adhere to it.
After all, the only thing that really matters is living your best life in 2019. The rest is background noise.