The holidays are a wonderful time for parties and get-togethers. All the great food, wonderful friends, fun family, not to mention presents and gift-giving can make the holidays so much fun. But some parties are super boring, and others are super great. What makes one party better than another? Is it the food? The drinks? The company?
I know the secret – when you host a party, apply to the 5 senses! When you engage all 5 senses, you create stronger memories and more engaged experiences. There are a few ways to do that, and this Holiday Party Worksheet can help you make a great plan. Just fill out the form and you can download your worksheet for FREE!
1. Sight – Straighten up
People are coming to your party to see YOU, but clutter and chaos are NOT welcoming. You don’t have to deep clean your entire house to have an amazing party, but you SHOULD straighten up and clean all the areas that guests will potentially be in. This means clean the bathrooms, vacuum the floors, do the dishes, make your bed if you’ll be putting purses and coats in your bedroom. By making sure the house is tidied up and clean you will address the sense of sight. Visually clean places make us feel more peaceful, and then we can relax and enjoy the party.
2. Sound – Play Music
There’s nothing more awkward than silence, and a party with lots of awkward silent pauses will flop. You can fill that awkward pause with background music so easily! At Christmas we play a YouTube channel with a fireplace image and 3 hours of Christmas music. You could also play your favorite Pandora station or go old school and play a CD on a CD player. By playing background music you are applying to the sense of sound and creating a welcoming and comfortable atmosphere for your guests.
3. Taste – Serve Great Food
Let’s be real here. We all go to parties and base the success on how great the food is, right?!? Food applies to the third sense, taste, and this one’s pretty important. Do not – I repeat DO NOT – serve new recipes you’ve never tried before at a party!!! Serve recipes and food that you KNOW are delicious and that your guests will love. Make sure you’ve got a mix of food items so that anyone with any kind of food allergy can still eat, and be sure to have drinks that are yummy too. Your party food will make your party epic or a flop, so be sure to have a plan for time-tested recipes to serve and address that third sense of taste.
4. Feel – Make it Cozy
What makes a place cozy? Literally how it feels. If a party is cold, then people are uncomfortable. If it’s hot, then people are uncomfortable. Room temperature can be tricky, but it’s an important piece to figure out before the party. We’ve all been to that party where we were either freezing popsicles or we were sweating bullets in our winter sweaters because it was 80 degrees inside and 30 degrees outside. As the host/hostess, it’s your job to make sure your guests are comfortable, so even if you have to blast the A/C in the middle of winter to cool down a room full of 50 people, be prepared to do that! Be aware, be thoughtful, and help make people comfortable so they remember how much fun they had, not how miserable they felt the whole time they were at the party.
5. Smell – Make It Smell Good
Smell is a super easy sense to forget about! We assume because we’re serving food the house will smell good. But have you ever made broccoli for dinner, then left and came back, and the house stinks to high heavens? Yeah, you don’t want that for your party!! After you’ve prepared all the food, take the next step and either light a candle, melt some wax, light a fire, or diffuse some essential oils to make sure your home smells great. It’s a simple step to make a party feel welcoming, but very few people actually do something about it. Be the host/hostess who addresses every sense and light that candle to help people make the best memories they can during your party!
When you apply to all 5 senses, you elevate the party experience for all of your guests. With just a few easy steps, you can host amazing holiday parties too! Don’t forget to download my easy Holiday Party Worksheet to make a plan for your holiday parties!
What other tips and tricks do you use when you host a party? I’d love to know! Leave me a comment below and share all your secrets! Can’t wait to read them.