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November 23, 2020 4 min read

What could be better than great food with friends and family, and giving thanks for the things we are fortunate enough to have? While there’s no doubt that there are a lot of things to love about the Thanksgiving holiday, it’s normal to feel like you need to hit the refresh button on your Thanksgiving plans.

And there’s no question this Thanksgiving will look a lot different than last year or any other year, in fact. Around the country, many families might not be able to celebrate the holiday face-to-face like they used to.

Maybe you’re feeling the stress that the holidays bring along with them. Or perhaps you’re looking to make the day more memorable.

But no matter what your reasoning may be, we’re here to give you six alternative Thanksgiving plans to try this year. You’ll be left feeling more excited, and maybe even a little more relaxed as you enjoy the celebrations, no matter how they look this year.

Switch up Your Theme

Naturally, Thanksgiving is the common theme for the holiday. But mixing it up can make a huge difference to the excitement around it. Forget limiting yourself to traditions and incorporate something new!

You might try mixing up the menu by serving something like a taco feast or a build your own pizza night. Get creative with your combinations and add in some interesting desserts.

Everyone in your “social bubble” can dress up according to the theme and change out your usual decorations for something new.

Each year might even have a different theme so that the ideas never get tired and guests are kept on their toes. You’ll get to experience cooking all different types of cuisines from around the world and expand your expertise in the kitchen.

Add Exercise into Your Thanksgiving Plans

One of the last things you’re likely to associate with your Thanksgiving plans is exercise. While it seems like an unlikely duo, it can actually be a great combination!

We all know how the usual Thanksgiving Day goes – you spend it cooking or waiting for the food to be ready, and then you indulge. It’s common to be left feeling lethargic from your food coma and sitting around throughout the day.

Break up the day with some movement in order to help avoid those lethargic feelings. It can also be great to make this into a group activity where everyone can get some exercise in before sitting down to enjoy a nice meal.

If you can’t be indoors with people who don’t live in the same household, why not meet them for a walk outside in the fresh air? It’s a safer way to spend time together while also keeping active!

You might even participate in a run to help raise funds for a certain cause. You will feel great both from getting exercise and from your efforts in helping others.

Modernize Your Recipes

There’s nothing more predictable on Thanksgiving than the food. The classic turkey and stuffing and mashed potatoes with gravy have been done more times than you can count!

Why not add a modern twist to the classics and get excited about something new?

You might switch out the turkey for meatballs or regular mashed potatoes into a scalloped potato layered cake. The possibilities are endless which means this is your chance to get creative.

Check out these 50 Modern Thanksgiving Recipes to Cure You of Any Holiday Fatigue.

Make the Cooking a Team Activity

It might feel natural for one or two volunteers to take on the bulk of the cooking while others simply get to relax and enjoy. Relieve those individuals of the stresses of cooking by making it into a team activity.

(Take a look at this post for more tips for dealing with unwanted stress!)

Getting friends and family who are in your social bubble involved with the cooking process is a great way to bond over a group project and celebrate the holiday.

Throw on some music and divide tasks up based on everyone’s strengths in the kitchen. You’re guaranteed to be laughing and making new memories in no time!

If you’re unable to celebrate with your friends and family in person, consider setting up a video call so you can still interact while you prepare or enjoy your Thanksgiving meal!

Get Out of Town

It’s possible you’re feeling that Thanksgiving all together isn’t enough to excite you or destress you, even with changing up your plans.

Think outside the box and consider taking your family or a group of friends on a little vacation to a nearby, safe place. Sometimes a change of scenery is all it takes to hit that reset button.

This year especially, hotels and resorts are offering Thanksgiving specials to give you the chance to take a back seat and enjoy. Use this time to give gratitude to the things you are thankful for and take some well-deserved time off.

Reset Your Intentions Behind the Holiday

If you had to sit back and think about it, what would you say the true intentions are behind making Thanksgiving plans? It’s more than likely you think of getting loved ones together or taking the time to give thanks.

The true meaning behind the holiday isn’t about ensuring the turkey is perfectly cooked or the table settings are picture-perfect.

Remember the true intentions behind your Thanksgiving plans! Try to let go of the stress that goes along with making it perfect.

Tackle Stressful Thanksgiving Plans Once and For All

Resetting your intentions is a great way to help yourself let go of unnecessary stress. If you’re looking for a unique way to manage holiday stress, we encourage you to give the Xen by Neuvana Headphones a try.

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