How to indulge in JOMO (that's the Joy of Missing Out)
For those who have gone to the effort of preparing a party, there's nothing more galling than receiving a slew of texts from guests citing pneumonia/flu/insert your own elaborate excuse here. So how best to decline a Christmas party invite with élan (and minimal blowback)?
Firstly, reply as soon as possible. As soon as you know you'll be unable to go (or as soon as you realised you couldn't be bothered), let that person know. Thank them for the invite and add a quick note that you hope to get together in the future. The point that you need to hammer home is that it's nothing personal, but that you already have plans for that night (even if said plans include a Netflix box set and microwaved soup).
"If you want to turn down an invite, keep it simple," advises Byrne. "Do not start adding elements to the story - 'I would love to be there but…' It's much better just to say 'thanks for the invite but I can't make it'. Nobody really cares about the excuse. They only care whether you are in or not, so that they're more aware of the numbers on the night."