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The 12 inevitable stages of New Year's Eve.

Image: iStock.

Is there a calendar date more emotionally turbulent than December 31?

New Year’s Eve manages to be exciting, disappointing, stressful, awe-inspiring, hopeful and kind of depressing… every single time. You can put it down to a potent mix of ‘new year, new you!’ rhetoric, the pressure to mark the occasion in style and the torture of resolution-making..

In the spirit of celebration, here are the 12 inevitable stages we’ll all go through tonight. So… cheers to that?

3pm: “Could my expectations BE any higher?”

This is it: the year you finally nail New Year’s Eve. It’s going to be the best night of your life, damnit, and you’ve got a ripper party outfit, freshly bronzed cheeks and an endless supply of champagne and chunky chili-basil dip (hello, the fancy $4.50 stuff) to ensure it happens.

5:20pm: “I’m havin’ such a good time, I’m havin’ a ball.”

Let’s just talk straight for a moment: this will be the peak of the entire night. Enjoy it. Watch: How to stop your makeup from eating your face this NYE. (Post continues after video.)

8pm: “Right. What am I going to do for the next three hours…?”

You’ve finished all the good drinks, you’ve got a chip-and-dip-induced stomach ache, and the night isn’t even close to over yet. Is there seriously three more hours of this to go…? (Post continues after gallery.)

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9:04pm: “Can I go home now?”

You don’t always long for the days of your childhood, but you kind of wish it was still socially acceptable to go to bed after the 9pm fireworks. At this point, you’re cooked. You’re done. You’re full and you’re sleepy and you’re not convinced you’ll even make it to midnight. Is this adulthood? You want out.

9:37pm: "Ugh, this was a TERRIBLE idea."

It doesn't matter if you're camping out for fireworks or at the hottest nightclub in town: there comes a time of the night where you will bitterly regret your NYE activity of choice. This is that moment.

Maybe it's because your feet hurt and the music is terrible. Maybe it's because you're sunburnt after setting up your picnic rug several hours too early in the day. Either way, you'll jump straight onto Instagram and check out what everyone else is up to and quietly resent their clearly superior choice.

10:12pm: "Okay, FINE, I'll make some resolutions."

Partly out of optimism, partly out of boredom, but mostly out of peer pressure, you find yourself declaring your 'resolutions' for the year ahead. Invariably, it'll be some combination of 'Eat better/Actually use my gym membership/Wash my bras more regularly/Watch less Netflix/Stop dating wildly inappropriate people'.

11:43pm: "Who am I? What does it all mean?"

The hour of naval-gazing is nigh. With the new year looming close, your inner sage takes hold and you find a quiet spot to take stock and ponder everything this year has brought to your life, what it all meant, what might lie ahead, etc. Depending on how much champers you've imbibed, there'll probably be a tearful embrace or two ("OhmygodIloveyouguyssss...").

11:53: "I'm going to die alone."

Being single is great... except in those last few minutes of the year when you realise there are no eligible 'NYE pash' candidates nearby and your coupled-up friends have begun inching toward each other across the dance floor. All those romantic New Year's Eve scenes in movies and TV shows have really screwed us over, huh?

11:57pm: "Three! Two!... ummm guys? Guys?"

Someone's watch/phone/clock is always three minutes fast. Don't be that guy.

12:01am: "Okay, this is actually pretty great".

You're watching fireworks, you're hugging your nearest and dearest, you've got a ridiculous metallic paper hat on your head and you can't help but have fun. Really, the first few minutes of the new year aren't so bad after all.

1:47am: "Seriously. It's time to go home."

Yep, you're done. Take those leftover party poppers and the heels you took off three hours ago and hit the road.

1:52am: "F***! My resolutions!"

As you bite into that steaming hot kebab/pie/servo sausage roll on the stagger home you realise with horror... yep, you've already broken your healthy eating resolution.

Oh well, there's always next year...

How are you spending your New Year's Eve?

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