It’s Your Choice

thanksgiving

Today we want to discuss preferences – making the right choices for ourselves – and how our preferences affect our relationship with others and with ourselves.

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marylynnI was talking with my dad the other day. He’s really looking forward to Thanksgiving Day because he is going to cook all day. My dad is the make-everything-from-scratch kind of guy. He just can’t wait. For him, it’s going to be super-relaxing and he’s excited about it. I, on the other hand, would hate that. I can’t see how cooking and doing dishes all day is fun and relaxing.

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georgeAs we were talking about this, we realized that we assess other people, and what they’re doing, based on our own preferences.

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marylynnObviously, I don’t think what my dad’s doing is wrong. I’m happy for him that he’s excited. It’s just that it’s not what I would want to do.

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georgeI’m closer to your league, Mary-Lynn. If we were doing this whole thing ourselves, there would be a lot of semi-homemade cooking – out of the box with modifications stuff.

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marylynnI’m all about the Stove Top stuffing and getting a turkey breast instead of a whole turkey, so you don’t have to carve it. I guess what I’m saying here is that my choice is to be lazy!

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georgeWhich works fine on Thanksgiving Day for you. But I think sometimes we look at other people and wonder why in the world they’re doing what they’re doing. Like with what your dad’s doing – it works for him and brings him joy.

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The perfect meal

Then sometimes we make choices for ourselves based on what we think other people expect from us. We put pressure on ourselves to be perfect. Let’s keep the Thanksgiving theme going. We think we have to have the perfect meal – we have to serve the dinner on the china, the stuffing has to be homemade, we have to make the pies from scratch.

It’s what we’ve always done

We put all these pressures on ourselves because we think that’s what our guests expect. Those expectations may be based on tradition – this is what we’ve always done. Just because we’ve “always done” something doesn’t mean we should necessarily feel pressure to keep doing it every single time, or any time for that matter! There should be a good reason for it. 

Guilt

If you are strapped for time, if you are tuckered out, why put yourself through all of this extra work? You could just get a store-bought pie or call someone and ask them to make one or pick one up.

But if we do that, we feel guilty. Because we’re not doing what’s always been done, because our family’s going to expect that everything is going to be perfect – we’re going to have the homemade pie, the stuffing is going to be made from scratch, the turkey will be nice and golden, fresh out of the oven, ready to carve.

Who really expects it?

We do all of these things because we feel these expectations even though the people around us may not. We place all of this pressure on ourselves!

We may do this because we want everything to be perfect. That’s fine as long as it’s really your choice and you’re not doing it because you feel guilty if you don’t do it.

Conscious choices

Maybe if you really thought about it, and you talked with your loved ones, you might decide that the best solution is to go out for Thanksgiving dinner. Or have spaghetti with turkey meatballs!

That’s the point – it doesn’t matter what you do if you consciously make the choice. If it works for you and the people you care about, then it works! And this doesn’t just apply to Thanksgiving dinner!

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Today we give thanks to you for joining us here. Next time, we’ll look at close encounters of the rude kind. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Related posts

Putting The Thanks In Thanksgiving

Putting The Giving In Thanksgiving

(Image by bjearwicke)

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