PHILADELPHIA - Having a Thanksgiving dinner with family can be a challenging task. There are a lot of different things you can do to help you survive it. The key is to avoid hot-button issues, get your family to work, and respond to comments with grace.
Avoid Hot-button Topics
Whether you're hosting a Thanksgiving dinner with family or simply attending one, avoid hot-button topics that could cause conflict. A recent Reuters/Ipsos poll found that 62 percent of adults don't like politics at holiday dinners.
The poll was conducted between Nov. 8-13. It found that squabbles over President Obama and President Trump were among the most minor favorite political topics.
While there will always be hot-button topics that are difficult to discuss at a Thanksgiving dinner, keep the conversation positive. You can use Thanksgiving conversation starters to redirect the conversation.
You can also ask family members about their favorite Netflix shows or albums. This will help keep the conversation light and a little more interesting.
Depending on the age of your family, you may want to steer clear of controversial topics at the dinner table. You should use appropriate tones when talking about hot-button issues.
The next time you're in the middle of a heated conversation, take a step back and think about the other people in the room. You might find that someone else at the table has the same views as you. If you're willing to work together, you can find common ground.
Put Your Family To Work
Putting your family to work can be both fun and rewarding. You can't go wrong if you decide to enlist them in the kitchen or give them a few hours of their time. After all, no one wants to spend all their time watching the cook.
While at it, you can also show some appreciation for their efforts by contributing to a worthy cause. This can be as simple as donating to a local food drive or sponsoring a Thanksgiving dinner for a worthy cause. You can even do it in the comfort of your own home.
Aside from the food, you'll be eating, the best part of Thanksgiving is the people you get to spend time with. Whether it's a quaint family reunion or a raucous get-together with friends, Thanksgiving is the perfect time to catch up. If you're not lucky enough to have family nearby, consider a virtual holiday. You can still enjoy the festivities sans the crowds.
Respond To Comments With Grace
During Thanksgiving dinner, you will likely have to deal with comments from family members that may cause you to feel upset. However, you do not have to let your reactions to these comments control how you think. Instead, you should respond with grace. This way, you can shape your relationships with your family.
You are not making enemies when you respond to family comments with grace. You are allowing your relationships to grow. If you respond to family members with dignity, they may encourage you to become more assertive in other areas of your life. This is a way to grow your relationships with them and build self-esteem.
Some people avoid talking about hot topics during Thanksgiving dinner. Others do not feel comfortable addressing politics or issues that may cause resentment. However, you can use your responses to shape the conversations. You can ask questions or use "I" statements. Whether discussing a hot topic or an everyday issue, you should respond with grace.