It’s the week of Thanksgiving, and the primary Thanksgiving related thought in many people’s mind is the food. There’s no denying that Thanksgiving is primarily about the turkey and stuffing. Every news and talk show has featured a turkey dinner from the yummiest to the “healthiest.” We’ve been given ideas on how to face the food for the day – what to swap out, what to avoid, and what bring. As far back as I can remember, it’s been about the dinner. We mentally prepare ourselves for the feast(s) of the day by wearing our “fat pants” and deciding today is the day we’re just going to put on some pounds.
In reality, unless one really goes off the deep end, you likely won’t gain multiple pounds due to one day of unfettered eating and minimal activity. My concern is not over how much weight someone is going to gain over Thanksgiving, or how deprived one feels because he or she chooses to say no to the least healthy options on the table. Rather, my issue with Thanksgiving is that the food has become almost the exclusive focus of the day. If you really want to avoid the post-meal misery or the feelings of dieting-induced deprivation, then change your focus.
Whether you are the host, the guest, heading out, or staying home, stop for a moment and think about what you are thinking about. How much of your mind is occupied with what’s for dinner, and how much of your mind considers the person seated across the table from you? Instead of pondering which pie you will devour first, consider who in the room could use some friendly conversation. Rather than quickly deciding what to say when it is your turn to state the obligatory thing for which you are most grateful before everyone digs in, take the time Thursday morning to consider the many blessings in your life.
Ten minutes. I think that’s all it will take to change your focus on this day. Take this time to list – mentally or actually using pen and paper – the people, the things, the experiences, and yes even the food, that have enriched your life. You may surprise yourself with the length of your list. Wonderful blessings will come to mind that you may have taken for granted in the past, but today you remember with gratitude in your heart. Before you get started with the day’s preparations, take another look at your list, thank God for all the blessings He has poured over you, then focus on how you can be the blessing on someone else’s list next Thanksgiving.