Over the last few years it’s like something flicked a switch within me…about 50 years too early. Suddenly the party girl in me, after a few subtly rebellious years was ready to retire. In fact, she already had retired, mostly without any notice before vanishing completely one day. In her place was a twenty-two year old who preferred being tucked up by the fire, dog sat in my lap, glass of wine and Strictly Come Dancing on the telly. Believe me, I’m as exasperated with myself as you are reading this.
“Live a little,” they said.
“But I’m tired,” (read: can’t be bothered) I’d respond.
I’d flick through Instagram, watching everyone else spending their Saturday nights out in a bar or club and yes, there was the odd fleeting moment when FOMO reared its head but then I’d wake up on a Sunday morning, fresh as a daisy, ready to take on the day, smug in the knowledge that they certainly weren’t.
I could put this down to a few factors. The shift in seasons for one. Throw a little sunshine and warmth my way and I’ll party all you want but at this time of year with wind, sleet and rain going on out there? No. Thank. You. Realistically, who wants to go out in that, scantily clad, far from your warm fireplace only to spend the following day battling the hangover from hell while jolly ole Michael Buble judges you in the background? Not me.
Other factors come down to my appreciation of sleep. I’m not a great sleeper at the best of times but I need at least eight hours to function as a human being which makes inviting delays or further disruptions (e.g. a late night partying) seem unappealing.
Don’t get me wrong I enjoy a night out but I’m much more inclined to make it an occasion rather than a habit, preferably with enough time between nights out that I forget just how debilitating a hangover really is. At this time of year in particular, I’m forced to suck up my old lady ways and learn to power through the party. Much like my inner granny voice is muttering to herself, I’ll most likely spend my time complaining about the night out and refusing to admit that actually, I’m having a wonderful time singing Mariah Carey at the top of my voice with strangers in a bar.
Should you find yourself suffering with similar conflicting emotions, here’s how to party all night long when, like me, you prefer to live that grandma lifestyle;
Rest well the night before – I’m not even joking. This is key.
Give the getting ready process everything you’ve got. You’re going to want a banging outfit, the kind you can’t wait to wear and show off during your night on the town.
While getting ready, music choice is essential in keeping spirits high so make sure you have a good playlist queued and ready to blast through your speakers as the getting ready process commences.
Cancel all plans for the day after. Chances are your hangover will be so much worse than you anticipated. Tomorrow is a day for hibernating.
Get ready with a friend that won’t let you bail last minute no matter how big a tantrum you throw.
Just break the habit. There’s nothing wrong with being a homebody and while learning to say no to social situations you’re not comfortable in is a key element of self-care, sometimes FOMO is giving you the right signals. You’ve got to break out of your comfort zone every once in while to grow as a person.
All in all, remind yourself just how much fun could be had. Speaking from experience, once you’re out, I guarantee you’ll be glad you made the effort. As they tried telling me before, live a little.