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Every year around November, families from all different parts of the country gather together to have a Thanksgiving meal. For those who are unaware of what Thanksgiving is, it is a traditional holiday celebrated primarily in the United States and Canada to give a special thanks to what they have in life (below you can view the history of Thanksgiving). Today, Thanksgiving is considered more "secular" however, the tradition of  gathering together with family around a dinner table and eating lots of turkey and other foods has remained the same for years.

Whenever you get a bunch of family members together, there always tends to be family "drama." Many people who gather around the same table have a strong dislike or opinion about one another, especially towards one's in-laws. Children are more apt to enjoy these seasonal holidays because to them, it is about seeing their loved ones and during the Christmas holiday, receiving lots of presents. This is not the case for many adults. Parents and adults are generally the ones who have to prepare the food and buy the gifts. They also are expected to behave respectfully towards everyone....but this only happens in a dream world. Regardless of  whether or not you will be celebrating Thanksgiving, the following 5 tips can help in any family circumstances.

Yes, this is actually an important step to getting through those brutal moments. Once you acknowledge that every year Uncle Tom will always get on your nerves asking you the same question, then you will be in a better position. Many times when we have the expectation that someone will change, our disappointment that  a particular individual has the same personality skyrockets and can make you severely depressed, angry or aggravated. If there is one thing you want to remember, keep in mind that everything, drama included, will be the same every year.

Stay off of topics that will lead to nothing but arguments. There is no better way to stir up the drama by mentioning your opinions about how much you love Obama, if half of your family voted Republican. These are controversial issues that are better left untold or at least not while your Republican family member has the turkey carving knife in  their hand.

At this time of the year, you probably haven't seen most of your family in an extremely long time. What better way to break the silence and show that you care, then to actually LET your annoying cousin gab about all of his or her accomplishments. Many people who are in this bragging phrase of life are generally the most unhappy people that you will ever meet. This is primarily because a person who is constantly talking (bragging) about certain things are no longer even trying to convince you, they are merely doing it to convince themselves. 

"Let the wise listen and 
add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance 
(Proverbs 1:5)."

This one goes along with number 3. That same cousin who is bragging and it makes you feel bad, just don't take it personal. As hard as this may be, just remember that your big mouth bragging cousin is probably not as happy as they pretend to be. Thanksgiving is almost like a high school reunion. Everyone gets around the table and lies about everything that is going on. Or maybe that's on Facebook?

As hard as it is to be around certain loved ones, LIFE IS SHORT. Families rarely get together and when they do it is a grueling experience for most. However, you NEVER know what will happen tomorrow. On Thanksgiving day, your in-laws might be annoying, but who is to say that the words that comes out of their mouths will not be the very last words you will hear from them.

Take this time to be THANKFUL for ALL of the family and friends that you have. NEVER let the drama allow you to look over the many blessings that you have.

" Give thanks in all circumstances,
 for this is God's will 
(1 Thessalonians 5:18)."

Written By: Te-Shandra Haskett, MBA