19 Stages Of New Year's Eve Planning Anxiety

12/27/2013 10:49 am ET

Deciding how to spend New Year's Eve is usually a gigantic production. Not only is it the most overhyped "party night" of the year -- just staying in is, apparently, not an option -- but everyone has a different idea of what makes an "epic" night. Whether it's paying way too much money to go to a club, raging at a warehouse party in a predictably sketchy part of town, or packing into Times Square or its equivalent to watch something fall from the sky, figuring out how to just have a good time on New Year's can be shockingly difficult.

Here are the 19 stages of New Year's Eve planning anxiety:

1. The conversation first comes up at brunch in November, which is just way too early. And, unfortunately, the opinions being tossed around aren't quite your scene.

2. "I heard about this awesome dance party!"

3. "Ooh let's go to a fancy hotel!"

4. "What about a gala? Something black tie?"

5. It's shaping up to be an expensive night.

6. One where you'll have to wear heels and stand in a line.

7. But resistance is futile at this point, so you nod and play along.

8. Fast-forward to mid-December, where everyone starts panicking about having a set plan before people peel off for the holidays.

9. But when the previous suggestions are re-hashed, you're not having it.

10. Your only requirement for the evening? This:

11. The email chain your friend started about the night is now 102 messages long.

12. You browse Facebook to get away from it all.

13. But what's this on your sidebar? An invite you somehow missed?

14. A New Year's house party? Friends of friends are welcome?

15. Hallelujah!

16. All that's left is getting ready for the night itself. Grab your shiniest dress.

17. Dig out your best playlist.

18. Dismiss all suggestions that your plans aren't "fun" enough.

19. And enjoy!

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