There will come a point during every party that you're ready for everyone to leave. If you're lucky, this moment will happen after folks have started to leave as opposed to before they arrive.
The punch has been drunk, cake eaten, stories told, it's time for them to go. First, since you're an introvert, take a moment and do something alone. For instance, go to the bathroom, take out the garbage, excuse yourself unexplained and close yourself in your bedroom. Just go be by yourself for a second and take an inventory of who's left and which folks you haven't talked to yet. Take another moment and just breath. As we used to say "smoke 'em if ya got 'em." If you dot know what that means, then good for you, ask your crazy aunt about it some time, she'll explain it.
Now that you've had a moment and a list of folks you haven't spoken with, join the party again, find one of those folks and say hello. This little retreat and attack tactic may help you make it through another hour of people invading your home. Repeat as necessary.
Alright, so you've met your limit. Here are some phrases to start using
Oh my, is it really that late?
We really should do this again sometime.
Do you have any other plans for today?
It's been so wonderful seeing you.
You should call me next week so we can talk about this more.
I really should start working on these dishes. (This may get you some help in the kitchen or cause the fastest exit strategy)
Now, if it's a good friend, just be honest. Tell them you're tired and need to get some rest. You'll see them again soon.
Those all work for large gatherings with stragglers. But what about those individual get togethers or small groups?
You might be stuck. But honesty can work here, too. Let them know you enjoyed your time together. Get up. Help them gather their things. Walk toward the door. And wave good-bye as they walk away. Added bonus, if you enjoyed getting together, make another date!
This is one of the drawbacks of having people in your home. You can't just leave, they do.
We talked about extended house guests. Oh man, hopefully, they let you know before hand when they would leave. Once they're in, they're in. You can kick them out, but you need to sit down and have a frank conversation.
I'm no expert on any of these. But I do want to share a story to keep us mindful of our words. We had a student from Africa, Joseph, who was often asked when he was returning to his home. People were curious and concerned about his family. He, however, thought that it meant people did not want him around. He was relieved to find out otherwise, but it does show that our questions should be honest and on point in regards to hospitality. Occasionally, we do want to tell people to go away. Let's make sure that they know it's our limitation and not their company.