The most important questions in life can never be answered by anyone except oneself. — John Fowles
Are you anticipating drama as you gather with family for the holidays? Want to avert the drama without walking out of the room? Want to preempt the worn-out fish story you hear every year? Can your family do better than the same old, “What are you thankful for this year?”
Try asking questions. Everyone needs help talking to relatives they don’t see very often. Questions like these will help you steer the discussion where you would like.
Here are some to get you started…
- Would you like to know the day you were going to die? If you did, what difference would it make?
- What one thing, if it were to happen, would make you happier? Why?
- Where would you like to go?
- What historical figure would you like to have dinner with? Why?
- If you had a time machine, where (and when) would you go?
- If you could change anything about the past that wasn’t personal to you, what would it be?
- In what ways did your life turn out like you thought it might? In what ways is it different than you planned?
- What do you think life (maybe one aspect of life) will be like in 10 years? in 20?
- Would you rather live by the beach or the mountains? Would you rather vacation in the beach or the mountains? Why?
- What do you think is the best age to be? Why? (This is especially fun to ask kids).
- What superpower would you most want to possess? Why? What superpower would you be most likely to abuse?
- What piece of technology would you most dread living without?
- If you won “A year’s worth of ____________”, what would you most want it to be?
- What book did you most enjoy this past year? Why?
- How does who you are today reflect who you were when you were 12?
Not every question will work with every person. But a good question asked at the right time could transform your Thanksgiving meal and make it a lot more fun!
(I tried this last night. I asked if you would like to know the day you would die question. My daughter said, “No. I’m not good with deadlines!” Have fun.