Getting slim: It’s a goal that many share.
Getting slim: It’s a goal that many share.

It was a simple enough question: With the first quarter of the year gone... What have you accomplished for yourself so far in 2014?

The response to Dejon Simons’ Facebook post was quite revealing though, and served to highlight that while we (or maybe just me) might get overwhelmed by the negatives, there are a lot of positives out there.

And the positives are not just about new jobs etc, they are very personal positives.

Personally, I’ve a real mixed bag of a couple of weeks (big highs mixed with bigger lows) and it was nice to read these comments. Although they gave me permission to use their names, I have left them off as I am not able to show them in the context of the column.

Ordinary folk, in their own words:

“Started school again. Started interning at focus. Started learning German. Signed up for a performance in this year’s mumbo nights. Tried to surf. Started to run, box, lift weights, dance. Rekindled relationships with family. Read some really good books. First time in a long time been happy with who I am.”

• “Definitely became more aware of myself.”

• “New business, new clients, meeting new people (you), relaxing more.”

• “Submitted to two literary journals, accepted in one so far, getting ready for first solo show in second quarter, and writing a poem a day for 30 days.”

• “Started my own business.”

• “I’m a month away from my Master’s. I’ve also achieved my goal of getting inducted into Kappa Delta Pi.”

• “Accomplished a year of my column! Launched my talk show! New website is launching in a couple of weeks.”

• “Lost weight.”

• “New career, lost weight, became a tweeting lunatic and have read 10 books (Columnist’s note: how the hell did you do that? I’m lucky if I read one a year….)

• “Working out regularly, eating healthier and enjoying life and family more. And haven’t had a sick day off from work since November.”

• “I’ve made a solid start to live happy!”

• “Met a group of amazing folks I can now call friends and started to write a weekly sports column for the Bermuda Sun!”

• “Won a few awards. Spoke at some seminars. Met incredible people. Saw beautiful things. Fell in love w/myself all over again. Finally gained traction around my passions after 8 years of grinding. Finally let go of the past. Compromised for nothing. Turned my swag up to one hunnid trillion. Too much to list in a single comment… Life is good.”

• “Started and finished 3 classes (Guitar, Ballet, Bermuda Blue Flag Ambassador Certification — with distinction!), wrote and performed a song with a group at Chewstick’s retreat, made some amazing new friends, started running 3 times a week, eating better for my health, stopped being late to work every day, had fewer hangovers, spent lots of time with my nieces.”

• “I got an old awesome friend as a boss and couldn’t be happier.”

• “Learned to say ‘no’ without explanation. Reclaimed my free time. Took courses, learned new skills, and found ways to create joy in the workday. Reconnected with overseas family. Planned, imagined, dreamed, and created.” 

In a recent column, I asked why parents put their children through punishing schedules after school and at weekends. I got this feedback:

“Too much school homework and too many after-school and week-end activities which leave insufficient time for creative play and needed family down-time create dysfunctional scenarios. 

“Working parents feel exhausted and become impatient with the children who often feel neglected but unable to articulate their feelings so they ‘act out’ their frustration in ways that are often unacceptable then the parents, who do not understand that acting-out is a way of seeking attention, punish the children. 

“The children feel misunderstood and continue to engage in a variety of acting-out behaviours. This scenario is the foundation for a pattern of chronic dysfunctional behaviours. Parents, teachers, leaders and guardians must develop skills to recognize when too much is too much. Too much is too much!”

Another person emailed me saying simply: ‘Burnt- out kids’.

What do you think? Email jdeacon@northrock.bm or tweet with him @jeremydeacon1
Bermuda Blue can be read at http://jeremydeacon.wordpress.com