ANYTOWN, USA – This is the time of year we gather in America to express our gratitude and bond over turkey and football. Glossy magazines decorate the aisles of overflowing supermarkets, resplendent with cornucopia, while malls stock up on stocking stuffers as Black Friday looms and the season of consumption begins.
The juggernaut is on us. All we really want is a nap.
Five Ways to Thrive This Thanksgiving
Let’s take a moment to agree: we’re all thankful for our blessings. Now, let’s outline some ways to manage the onslaught of holidays, with a handful of helpful tips so your time with family and friends is fun, not fraught.
Whether you’re behind the turkey or in front of the TV, keep your to-do list reasonable. Avoid the temptation to replace bathroom tile an hour before your in-laws arrive. Watch out for last minute “we- needs,” as in “we need a big screen TV.” Remember that while you want to please everyone, it’s simply not possible. Don’t take on more than you can handle, whether that means cooking, entertaining or overspending. Manage your expectations early and often.
Seek Not Perfection
Try not to try too hard. Try just enough to do what has to be done, and save the remaining energy for the renewal of your psyche when the week is over. Ignore the incessant drone of manic media that demands our participation in some fairy-tale scenario, forget being perfect and embrace the chaos. Toys won’t always be scattered across your floors and old uncles won’t always be there to tell their old stories. Take some time, this year, to look around and soak in what is. Accept it.
It’s one thing to say we forgo perfection, another to pull our homes together for the holiday. The best and most efficient way to do a lot of cleaning in brief bursts calls for two important elements: a good timer and good music. Some people like Broadway show songs, others prefer rock ‘n roll. Whatever your preference, set your timer for 15 minutes per room or area (kitchen, bathroom, entryway) and get busy. Clean and toss. Amaze yourself. Be done.
Party Like a Rockette
Perhaps you’ve heard the phrase, “Party like a Rock Star!” So, don’t do that. Instead, party like a Rockette. Pretend you’re a member of the prestigious precision dance team that performs five shows a day, seven days a week, during the holiday season. You think those girls and their gams are out at the Horned Hippo having cocktails until the wee hours, kicking their legs up in sync while swilling booze and sneaking cigs? No, they exercise and sleep. You should, too.
Know When To Hide
We may count our blessings, embrace the chaos and watch our health, yet sometimes things go wrong. We’re human and we crack. If you’re feeling stuck at home, outnumbered by guests or out of your element in someone else’s holiday nightmare, remember the time-honored, face-saving, grace-giving tradition of going out for ice. Grab your keys, smile bravely and spit it out quickly, “Going out for ice!” Then, get some air. Breathe. Return refreshed. Just don’t forget the ice.