So for all my readers in the U.S., Thanksgiving is upon us. Next week millions of Americans will gather with family or friends and give thanks by engaging in traditions such as eating too much food, watching football, watering down Uncle Christopher’s scotch so that the day won’t end in tears for Aunt Kate and getting ready to spend the night in front of the local Best Buy for the bedlam of Black Friday.
Of course, plenty of people have updated traditions and will engage in more peaceful activities. But whatever you are doing, whether you are excited and assured or stressed and anxious, expectations are high.
And out sized expectations can lead to resentment rather than gratitude.
So, instead of working up worry or expecting perfection, a little strategy for dealing with the things that could go awry can put you way ahead in the joyful satisfaction game.
For example, you may be tempted to take a holiday from your health routine. Really, please, don’t. Do your best to get some exercise before you get festive. Plenty of gyms are open and yoga studios offer classes. You will feel better about yourself and you will be less likely to overeat.
And if overeating is a big concern, in addition to exercising, cook some healthy options to compliment whatever is being prepared at your event. Be sure and bring plenty to share. This is a great day to turn others on to how delicious whole foods can be. Also, drink lot’s of water to help you feel full and stay hydrated. Especially if you plan to consume alcohol.
Are you are introverted, easily overwhelmed or just aren’t in a good place with everyone you will be spending time with? Plan to go for a long walk with others or maybe take the time to go for a walk by yourself to get some fresh air and alone time during the day. Knowing you will have some room to breathe means won’t get depleted or frustrated.
It’s simple, but when you prioritize your health by planning ahead to do what is going to make you feel great on holidays and everyday, when you give yourself permission to release your rigid expectations, you make room for the unknown to enter, you get to laugh at the messes, see beauty in the little pleasures and really appreciate your life and each other.
Photo awesomeness from awkwardfamilyphotos.com. If all else fails, they can show you how normal your family really is.