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Best Ways To Spend Your Thanksgiving Weekend This Year

Best Ways To Spend Your Thanksgiving Weekend This Year

The time for Thanksgiving is fast approaching. The holiday season is busy in the US, with Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas all just a month from each other. Often Thanksgiving is sandwiched in the middle and doesn’t get fully appreciated. Let’s face it, the stores start playing Christmas music on November 1st these days. This year, let’s explore the best ways to spend your Thanksgiving weekend.

Thanksgiving weekend is generally a family-oriented time, filled with good food, a big dinner, some football, and catching up. Why not shake up your traditional Thanksgiving weekend plans with something new this year? Here are some ideas for great activities you can do with your family this Thanksgiving weekend.

Day of Thanksgiving

Get up early and watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on the TV in your PJs.

Skype members of your family who weren’t able to be with you. Watch the parade together, or chat while you enjoy your pumpkin pie.

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Explore holiday favorites of your ancestors. A lot of my background is Norwegian and we often have lefse (yum) and lutefisk (yuck) when we gather for Thanksgiving. What did your ancestors enjoy?

Kick off your holiday giving before the stores open with an ornament exchange. Once you start this tradition, folks can spend all year finding creative and fun ornaments to exchange.

Start a New Tradition With a Holiday Video

Ask each family member to shoot a family holiday video before they arrive or during the day. Watch all of the videos after the meal and give a prize, or an extra piece of pie, for the most creative, thankful and humorous offerings.

Choose Someone Who Deserves Your Thanks

Have each person at the Thanksgiving dinner choose one person from outside the family that they are thankful for. Post-meal, make a treat or gifts as well as handwritten notes about why that person was chosen. Each family member will then deliver the gift and note to the person they are most thankful for during the next week.

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Post-Thanksgiving Weekend

Cross an Item Off Your Bucket List

For most of us, Thanksgiving weekend is a four-day holiday. This is a great time to get out your bucket list and show yourself some thanks by completing one of the items on your list.

Some ideas to consider are:

  • Hot air balloon ride
  • Sleigh ride
  • Weekend away you’ve been meaning to take
  • Buy the person behind you coffee
  • Watch a sunset
  • Unplug for 48 hours (straight)
  • Learn to make homemade pasta

Make christmas gifts

Instead of going shopping the day after Thanksgiving why don’t you make some holiday gifts yourself? Cookies or fudge can be made ahead of time. Your best brownie mix in a jar or homemade cards are also great ways to show appreciation to those you love.

Donate your time at a local animal shelter, homeless shelter, or some other way. The best way to give thanks is to help others who aren’t as fortunate as you.

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Take a break from all the food with an outdoor activity. Many cities have events for charity runs and moonlight bike rides. Or simply go for a hike.

Have a football tournament…online. Play via your Xbox, Wii, or PlayStation with others online.

If you’ve got snow, make a snow gamily. Make at least three different snow Ppeople of different sizes.

Do a museum tour, be a tourist in your own city.

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Have a game night. A great way to spend time with your friends and family is over games. Bring out your classic board games or even an interactive game console to play games. Scrabble, Monopoly, Dance Central, or Wipeout are all great options.

Host a Thanksgiving Brunch for Friends

Thanksgiving is often focused on the family, but we’ve all got great friends we are thankful for, too. Have a Thanksgiving brunch for friends on Saturday or Sunday.

Which of these ideas will you try this year?

Featured photo credit: Party At Home: Dancing Cranberries/VIKTOR HANACEK via picjumbo.com

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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Review Your Past Flow

Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

    Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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