Maximize your shopping time.
Every year we find ourselves rushing from store to store, searching for that perfect gift that will cause our loved ones to gasp with joy and think, “Gee, I wonder how much beer money this can be exchanged for?” You should save them the trouble by doing all your shopping at the liquor store. And make sure you’re on hand when they open it, so you may share their glee and help them “break it in.” Alcohol is also an excellent choice for the non-drinkers on your list, because this way they’ll always have something for you to drink when you drop by.
Keep your New Years resolutions to yourself.
Friends enjoy asking what your resolutions are because this is a good way for them to find out all the creepy stuff you’ve been up to. For example, if you say you’re going to try to be “more social” next year, they will assume you’re trying to shake a chronic masturbation habit. If you say you want to “focus more on your career,” this means you have been screwing up at work and are about to get fired. Saying you’re “going to spend more time with your family,” on the other hand, means you’ve been screwing up at work and are about to get fired.
Don’t let the stress overwhelm you.
If you ever feel as if you’re going to freak out, do this little exercise: Stop whatever you’re doing, take a deep breath, then transport yourself to that special place where you are most happy. Raise one hand in the air and affirm to yourself, “I am a good person and deserve to be happy.” Then go ahead and wave your hand a little until you get the bartender’s attention.
Spend some quality time with your family.
Friends come and go, but rest assured that through thick and thin, through good times and bad, your relatives will always be there to antagonize you, so you might as well get used to it. If your father, for example, gives you a hard time at Christmas dinner about your choice of careers, or lack thereof, just humbly smile and say, “Okay, Dad, I will try to find something that makes us both happy.” Later, after he’s gone to bed, start searching for that something. If he doesn’t have a liquor cabinet, it’s probably hidden in the cupboard above the refrigerator.
Make the most of your office Christmas party.
The greatest thing about office parties is not only the free booze, but also because they provide a rare opportunity to get on more personal terms with your employer and coworkers. After loosening up with a dozen drinks or so, open up new lines of communication by letting the hot girl from accounting know that everyone would stop thinking she’s so stuck up if she’d just make out with you a little. And don’t hesitate to tell that prick in procurement that you have some pretty goddamn good proof that it was he who stole your goddamn stapler. And don’t forget to take a moment to explain in detail to your boss that while everyone else calls him “That Evil Old Lardass Motherfucker” behind his back, you think he ain’t all that bad.
Beware of the “Holiday Blues.”
This usually sets in right about the time you wake up from last night’s party. The good news is you can beat the Blues by sitting down in a quiet room and writing down all the things you have to be thankful for. By the time you’re done, I think you’ll find that the bars have opened and you can go have a couple bloody marys.
Don’t freak out if you put on a few pounds.
Accept the fact that you’re going to put on some weight during the holidays, and if you don’t believe me, just ask the fat guy standing behind you. Oh, I’m sorry. That’s not a fat guy. That’s your ass.
Pick and choose your social engagements.
The holidays means you will probably be invited to so many parties you’d have to quit your job in order to attend and recover from all of them. So plan ahead and try to give at least one week’s notice.
Find time to exercise.
A little exercise will not only fend off those unwanted holiday pounds, but also serve to relieve tension and strain. So instead of just going to parties every night, try jogging to them. Keg stands are an excellent way to work the shoulder and triceps, and if you ask them in the right way, your ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend and any number of bouncers will be willing to engage in a little impromptu wrestling.
Don’t look back in anger.
The holidays are a good time to reflect back on what we did or did not accomplish during the previous year. The trick is to focus on the good things and deny the bad things ever happened. For example, don’t fret about all the bars you’ve been thrown out of, think instead about all the unpaid bar tabs you left behind. And instead of blaming yourself for all those failed relationships, think about that time you walked to your ex’s house and winged that empty bottle of Wild Turkey through her living room window. Dude, that was totally awesome.