5 Tips For Overcoming Hostess Neurosis

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By Jillian Stacia

I’m going to let you in on a secret: I don’t like hosting parties.

It’s a secret because it’s something I feel like I should do, and as the next generation of amazingly wonderful hostesses, it’s something I’m expected to do. It’s even something I want to do. But the reality is, I suffer from a hardcore case of hostess neurosis.

Every time I host an event, regardless of the size or people attending, I start to have a mini panic attack an hour before everyone arrives because I’m seeing my home through someone else’s eyes. I notice every tiny scratch, every stain, every mismatched décor item. What the hell was I thinking? Having people here? In my home? With my broken spring couch cushion and my hand me down furniture and my mediocre cooking?

In her book Carry On, Warrior, Glennon Doyle Melton talks about hostessing as an act of vulnerability. And I relate. Because letting people into your home? Inviting them to take inventory of where you live and dream and cook and play? It’s intimate. So naturally, it’s scary as hell, and I don’t want to do it.

Except, the larger, wiser part of me does want to. Because family is important, and I want my home to be a place of love and gathering and connection. I may never have it all together, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is that I open up my home to the people I love. That I show up for them. That I let them see me and all my imperfections.

But it’s hard to remember that when you’re in full out meltdown mode because the hostess neurosis has taken you hostage and left a crazy woman in your place. So instead of trying to convince you why you shouldn’t be nervous about having people over, here are 5 practical tips to help you get through hostessing without having a nervous breakdown:


Plan Ahead

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Make a list of what you need to buy and a list of things you need to clean. Make a game plan to get it all done on time, and make sure you schedule in some buffer for when the vacuum inevitably explodes and dog hair goes everywhere.


 Make it Fun

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Listen to music, put on some trash TV, do whatever you can to make the prep work more fun and enjoyable.


 Schedule In Some Self Care

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Sleep in that morning, go for a walk, read a book, get your nails done. Find a way to relax and feel rejuvenated before the stress starts to hit.


 Ask For Help

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Delegating is wonderful and people are lovely. When someone asks if they can bring something, GIVE THEM SOMETHING TO BRING. People want to help. It’s not an omission of weakness to take them up on their offer.


 Visualize Successjillian michaels

Imagine that the party is over and everyone enjoyed themselves. The food was delicious. No one noticed the couch springs. There was enough room for everyone to sit comfortably. Everyone left happy. You are relaxing on the couch with a humongous glass of wine, etc.


One last piece of advice? Just keep doing it. It’ll get easier. You’ll feel more confident and less crazy. Hosting won’t always be so stressful. Who knows, maybe you’ll actually learn to enjoy it!


Jillian is part of the Contributing Writer Network at Thirty On Tap. To apply to become a Contributing Writer, click HERE

{featured image via unsplash}

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