MoneyMagpie

Jan 01

Jasmine’s New Year Message 2017

Well, 2016 was a wonderful year….for Vladimir Putin. 

All his wishes came true. His best mate won the White House, Europe fell into a state of confusion and then oil prices went up, increasing Russia’s revenue. Everything’s been just peachy for old Vlad.

Doesn’t it make you feel good all over?

No. 

Me neither. 

Like a lot of people

I’ve been pretty shocked by many of the events in 2016. And some people are predicting more of the same in 2017. As the pop star James Blunt said on his Twitter feed a few weeks ago: “If you thought 2016 was bad – I’m releasing an album in 2017” 🙂

Jasmine's New Year MessageJust to add to our joys, the happy people at Bloomberg have created their ‘Pessimist’s Guide to 2017’ which has a long list of reasons not to be cheerful this year (don’t bother reading it if you need a lift. There aren’t many laughs in it.)

So, yes, we could be in for a bit of a bumpy ride this year and it’s easy to feel helpless and hopeless wondering how ‘little me’ can do anything about it. 

But the world is made up of individuals and, if you just think about a few key ones who have altered history, it’s clear that just one person can rock the world, even when the age seems to be against them.

So how can we deal with what may or may not be this year?

I was impressed

By what Princess Anne said of her parents in ’‘The Queen at 90’ documentary on the BBC recently. She said that part of their long and successful lives was a willingness to adjust to changing circumstances. Things changed around them each year and they adjusted accordingly.

That flexibility, the ability to move as things seem to change and shift around us, is something we can all have if we’re willing.

Not that we should ‘adjust’ our fundamental principles. Not at all. In fact I’ve found that as things shift around us that’s when we need to go deeper into what is real and fundamental to life. Living more of the simple, humane qualities that we all love in others has a quiet, seismic effect on those around us and, therefore, on the world. 

In fact, the useful thing about tough times – if we respond to them well – is that they can make us grow and succeed in a way we wouldn’t have imagined possible before. 

Jasmine's New Year MessageMy friend, the poet Lemn Sissay, who grew up in various children’s homes and foster care, set up Christmas day parties around the UK for young people who have recently left care. He knew how miserable the day could be for them and decided to meet that need. You can see more about it here.

Lemn could have, quite reasonably, allowed the neglect and cruelties he endured growing up to narrow and flatten him. But he didn’t. 

Because he loved, these experiences lifted him up. He is hugely successful personally already and, through these parties and other activities, his good effects are rippling out into the world through more and more lives.

It’s the sort of thing any of us can do in some way. It just takes a bit of sacrifice (not really even a lot of that) and a willingness to meet human needs as they appear around us.

My friend John said to me recently that he wanted to find more opportunities to help his community this year. He said “I want to kick some ethical arse”. 

And why not? Whatever the year throws at us – and particularly if it throws a lots that we’d rather not have – let’s go kick some ethical arse in any way we can!

What are your predictions for this year? Do you think it’s going to be fun or tricky?

Do you have ideas for ‘kicking some ethical arse’?

Tell me what you think about these ideas in the comments section below.

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WHAT DO YOU THINK?

13 thoughts on Jasmine’s New Year Message 2017

  1. Life is but an opportunity for you to make a difference. if you do something small and everyone (as many as possible join in) then we can change the world a little at a time. It can be as small as a smile to a stranger, giving directions, or even doing some voluntary work which can be a an hour each month to a few hours each week. Choose a cause and support it actively to make a difference.

    You can be the change – you wish to see in the world- what you do may just be enough to make a difference

    People have a habit of complaining about our Government (at all levels). I call this moaning
    Whenever I get this the questions i ask are:
    Did you vote at the last election – how many bother to turn up to vote when given the opportunity (turnout is normally only at 60% during good elections) and
    how many bother to rite to their MPS and local representatives to tell them what they think.
    Therefore if wrong short term decisions are made – I blame them on those who do not turn up to vote. My rant done

    Reply
    1. i totally agree. We can all do something and we must certainly all vote. I always vote because I remember that women died so that I could have the vote and men and women around the world are still dying for democracy. As you say, if we don’t take part then we have no right to moan!

      Reply
  2. I believe this year has loads of opportunities. What you think is wrong them why not so something positive even if it a small thing. Doesn’t have to big just something local. Helping out someone who down on their luck. Go help at a food bank centre show care to people and at least you will get a smile.

    Reply
  3. Jasmine, please can you look into this site. Everything I try to comment, when I try to put my address in suddenly it tell me there has been an error, closes down the page and loses everything I have just written. It did it three times before it accepted my last comment. I do it via my iPad.

    Reply
    1. That’s an IPod for you one unintentional touch; merest light touch of the screen and viola it’s gone. So much work gone to where ever our work goes too. Some internet repose where our messages lay at rest. Maybe ?

      Reply
  4. Thanks for your New Years message and all your advice and tips in 2016. I agree with your comments that 2017 could be a turbulent year. What with Putin and Trump. And I notice you don’t even mention Brexit. I just hope there is not a major conflict brewing. Interesting you say the Royal family have adjusted year on year – but have they that much? Still R.E.M.’s ants of the past even in the New Years honours with the word Empire rather than Commonwealth in award titles. But good to read about your friend doing something positive for others.

    Reply
    1. yes some good points there – I hadn’t thought of the Empire element. Even the Commonwealth is a bit old now. We could do with some new titles perhaps!

      i agree about the turbulence this year. The world seems to have taken some big, backward steps in the last 12 months and I hope we don’t keep going in that direction!

      Reply
  5. I am very happy that we are going to come out of Europe, but not happy with regard to how long it will take. It is not going to be easy with all the people who wan’t to undermine the process.

    Reply
    1. I am also happy we are coming out of Europe. With regards to all those people who seem to want to undermine the process. Since nobody has ever done it before the comments made are guesses; educated guesses maybe but still guesses.
      When the Pound dropped against the Dollar everybody was all doom and gloom; the end of Britain. However when it started to slowly climb almost nobody made any comment.
      The media still with their doom and gloom are not helping and the guesses they make they will not apologise for when things get better after article fifty. It will take time I think we all know that but I truly believe we will be the better for it.

      Reply
      1. Remember the media includes News International (the Times, The Sun etc) which are very pro Brexit, plus the Telegraph which is entirely pro-Brexit and Associated Media (The Mail etc) which is 100% pro-Brexit and of course the Express and Star which are screamingly pro-Brexit. When you think how much air-time Nigel Farage gets (even over New Year his complaint against the Archbishop of Canterbury was aired) I don’t think you can say that the media doesn’t broadcast enough pro-Brexit news.

        Reply
    2. Even those who fought for us to come out of Europe say it will take a long time. They admit it will take at least 10 years for the economy to get back on track once we’ve left. Remainers might certainly want to halt the process but even without that push it will take a very long time firstly to effect the split and secondly to get the economy back on track afterwards…I think.

      Reply

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