1. Mentally Bless Each Individual. It doesn't matter whether you are atheist or deeply religious or somewhere in between. Blessing a person simply means sending them positive loving vibes. Science has shown us that everything is energy, and our thoughts affect that energy. They have done studies where they put one person in a room alone, and had another person send them nasty, horrid thoughts. The person in the room would visible change demeanour, and blood tests showed clumpy, angry looking cells. Then, they sent the person loving, kind, healing thoughts. This time the person appeared more peaceful and their cells were healthy and beautiful. The person in the room had no idea what thoughts were being sent, or what the experiment was, but it affected him because thoughts are energy. If you send those loving thoughts to your family members, especially the more difficult ones, before getting together, it can literally change the frequency and energy in each individual and therefore the entire family situation.
2. Set an Example of Gratitude. Ask each family member to share at least one thing they are grateful for. This is a beautiful exercise that will add positivity and warmth to the occasion. You can also mentally walk through reasons you are grateful for each person, which can help keep you positive around anyone that may have a more negative personality or vibe. Another way to use gratitude is to thank each and every person who provided your dinner. From the farmer's who planted the green beans, the shipping clerks who packaged the rolls, the drivers who delivered the food to the grocery stores, the clerks who stocked the food and checked it out to you, the family member who took the time to cook it, and if eating Turkey, take time to send a prayer and thank the animal for giving it's life for your dinner table.
3. EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique). Let's face it, family time can bring up old wounds and emotions and insecurities. EFT is a wonderful technique that uses acupressure points to release emotional blockages. Check out Have a Holly Jolly Holiday With EFT to learn how to remove some of those blockages prior to Thanksgiving.
4. Communicate Dietary Changes Prior to the Day. Many people nowadays have special diets, whether it's being vegan, gluten free, lactose intolerant or other changes for health reasons, it may be difficult to eat the traditional Thanksgiving meal. Be sure to be gracious, but firm regarding your needs. Offer to bring a dish, or help with the meal planning. For more tips check out my blog entry Vegan Freak: Being Vegan in a Non-Vegan World.
Have a Wonderful Thanksgiving!!!