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The holiday season is a time for celebration, family, and giving thanks. Take a moment to reflect and focus on the positive aspects of life while counting your blessings. This is the perfect time of year to spend time with the ones you love and to experience the true meaning of Thanksgiving.

The holiday season should be focused on the things that are important. Reflect on things like family and the goals accomplished this year. Keep things simple. If you do not want the stress of cooking, have a potluck dinner and have everyone bring a dish. You can also enjoy Thanksgiving dinner at a restaurant or hotel. It is fine to want to enjoy yourself instead of being tired from cooking dinner all day and night.

Some things that you can do during the holidays to benefit others include helping to distribute a Thanksgiving meal to the homeless, volunteering at a nursing home, delivering goodies to the firemen and policemen who work on Thanksgiving, and offering your time to help someone who is less fortunate. This is the season for giving.

Most people overeat during the holiday season. Holiday stress can cause people to eat more, drink too much, and eat the wrong foods. Keep portion sizes to a minimum by using a small plate.

Some people dread the holiday season and feel lonely. I’ve learned through the years that everyone does not want to be around family during the holidays due to family issues and drama, so make the most of your time by doing the things you want to do. Be happy. Make some new holiday traditions of your own.

The aftermath of Hurricane Florence put things in a different perspective. It makes you reflect on the little things in life that mean so much. Everything you have can be taken away in a blink of an eye especially loss of life. Stop sweating the small stuff and be grateful for what you have.

The holidays can be stressful, so be sure to schedule some “me time.” Take a nap, a warm bubble bath, schedule a Swedish massage, read a book, watch a movie, or jot down thoughts in a journal. This time of year can be overwhelming. Be thankful and grateful that you have been blessed to see another holiday season, because we do not know our expiration date.

Happy Thanksgiving! (gobble, gobble)

Written By Dr. Shanessa Fenner