Whether you like it or not, there’s something about December which sends most people crazy. Work is replaced with celebration as friends and family come together to eat, drink and make lots of merry.

This can be a dangerous time for a designer. Late lunches, office parties and quiet studios offer plenty of opportunity for fun but also embarrassment. Here’s a little guide to ensure you don’t start 2016 with a red face.

Please drink (semi) responsibly
For many, December offers plenty of opportunity to consume alcohol. It may seem like cliched advice, but don’t go crazy, not around your colleagues, your bosses or your clients.

At the very least let them take the lead.

If the CEO is nailing Jaegers then by all means, go ahead. If not, alternate your drinks with water. Being put in a taxi by the head of accounts may not help your request for a raise in the coming year.

Bite your tongue
You’ve had all year to tell your colleague their tuneless whistling is driving you bats. The season of goodwill is never going to be the best time to finally have that heart to heart. The same absolutely goes for your crush. If you haven’t said it by now, don’t say it at all

Remember the gift-giving code
If you’ve been sucked into a secret Santa remember the gift code.
– Do not exceed the price limit and buy to impress
– Gifts should be funny, but not seedy
– Go not swap giftees, they will find out

If your studio doesn’t play secret Santa, remember:
– Exchange gifts with work friends in secret, away from all those people you hate.
– Never, ever buy your boss a gift. Ever.

Write these tips on your arm in permanent marker. I promise you’ll be thanking me come December 21st.