Where Is Your Gratitude?

Friday, August 06, 2010

Wow. There are no words.

Actually, there are...

I can't express enough how heartbroken and disappointed I am with some of the comments posted in reaction to SparkGuy's announcement of the new SparkAmerica site.

What happened to our gratitude for SparkPeople and its affiliated websites?

Should I remind you all that this groundbreaking revolution has helped us all improve our lives in some way or other? Should I remind you all that this is a blessing and a gift to us all, one which you all log in daily to be a part of? Should I remind you all that the SparkStaff continues to work towards expanding these sites and tailoring them to suit the differing needs amongst us?

This site is free. This site is a labor of love. This site has reminded us of one simple truth, and that is that we are powerful beyond measure, that we can pick ourselves up when we are at our lowest point, and that we really can realize those long-lost and given-up-on dreams.

So while I think it's great for all of us to offer our CONSTRUCTIVE feedback and views, I think that some of the thankless, overly critical, and downright rude comments that have been posted are honestly uncalled for.

Chris and his team are trying to bring something amazing not just to North America, but to the world. And it's a process. It takes, I'm sure, countless of hours of brainstorming and coming up with innovative ideas, of recruiting qualified writers and experts and staff, of ensuring that they have up-to-date technical equipment and servers, etcetera, of keeping up with current news, topics, forms of exercise, recipes, and keeping us informed and inspired all at the same time.

All we get to see is the end product and witness the awesome results we are having in our lives as well as the awesome friendships that are forming through the click of a mouse and the typing of our words.

I am sure that as SP continues to grow and become better known, it and its affiliated websites will become fully available everywhere across the world. That's why spreading the spark is so important.

If you're happy with SparkPeople and don't see the need to explore SparkAmerica, well, that's fine. You may not need to. But there are those out there who may benefit more from a simplified version of SP where they don't have the need to track every detail of their nutritional intake and where they can include tracking freggies and water intake for their kids as well. It might even offer some of us a change of pace and a refreshed boost in our journeys!

In order for greatness to be the end result, much contracting, expanding, and changing must occur... I mean, after all, if that's what it takes to be greater and more effective in our own lives, then wouldn't it stand to reason that the same concept applies to SparkPeople?

Think about that...

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Thank you for expressing so beautifully my opinion about the complaints. As a Canadian, I was so ashamed and angry that I could not trust myself to write a reasoned comment.

    I am grateful for Chris and Co.'s conscientious efforts to consistently improve the site. They make the world a better place.

    3841 days ago
    Its sad some people I think need to complain to be happy, or more miserable.

    3937 days ago
    I too am oblivious. I have not heard of Spark America but I think that your blog should be posted in with the comments.

    I don't get it. Why do people have to express nasty negative thoughts about anything?

    3937 days ago
    I agree 100%. Spark people is a blessing. Be polite.
    3937 days ago
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    I hadn't seen the nasty comments, but well said! I owe so much to SP - and all for free.

    3937 days ago
    Great blog! emoticon
    3937 days ago
    I havent read the nast comments but I completely agree with you! I am so thankful to have found this site and that it is free...if you dont like it you shouldnt be here!
    3937 days ago
    AMEN, AMEN, AMEN!!! I give thanks everyday for being led to Spark people and for Chris and his Sparkstaff. I truly wasn't looking to seriously improve my life, maybe just to lose a couple of pounds, and mind you, I was only mulling it over when I ran across Spark. I believe it was divine intervention of the best kind.

    In the seven months that I have been Sparking, I have lost 41 lbs, gone from 37% body fat to 25%, gone from not being able to walk a mile in 20 minutes without getting winded, wearing a knee brace and limping, to running 5K and 10K races at 11 mins mile and am starting to train for a half marathon. If anyone had dared tell me how healthy and happy I would be at this point in my life, I would have died laughing!!! Most all of those changes are directly attributed to Spark, it's staff and the wonderful friends I have made on this site.

    On a daily basis, people are noticing not just my reduced size, but my increase in energy and positive attitude. When they ask what I'm doing, how can I help but to spread The Spark??? I talk about it, and the positive effects it has and is having on my life constantly. Unfortunately, there are many more people out there who could benefit greatly from the wealth of knowledge that we have been blessed with, but for whatever reason, are hesitant to go to a "diet" site to find the "magic elixir" that we have been given FREE.

    God bless Chris for is thoughtfulness, generosity an innovation making this available to the populous at large (no pun intended).

    Those who would dare say otherwise are selfish and ungrateful and I hope and pray that their disrespectful statements are not given any consideration by the fine people at Spark. I only hope that the rest of the American (and worldwide) public are as blessed by Spark America as I have been by Spark People.
    3937 days ago
  • no profile photo CD4429274
    Seriously? I'm oblivious, apparently, because I had no idea there were complaints. What is wrong with some people? Either use it or don't, but it's not like anyone is being forced to do it.


    3937 days ago
    I know, Judy... I couldn't believe it. I had to reread some of them...

    And I agree with all of you, btw... :)
    3937 days ago
    I hadn't noticed the comments, but I agree with your points here. We are all different with different needs and being able to attract various types of people is the beauty of various types of programs!
    3937 days ago
    I have not done much to view Spark America nor have I viewed the nasty comments. While I commend our country for freedom of speech and understand we have to take the good with the bad I would have to agree that it is unnecessary for someone to 'dis' Chris and the wonder of Spark People. Perhaps people are misinfomed or concerned that SP is going away? For me personally I have evolved from a user who did little on spark people to a user who used every tracker and spark streak and block device etc. to someone who uses those tools that add most value for me and nothing more. For that I do not put down the pieces that are not of value to me. I realize they may work for others.

    Thank you for providing a safe space to voice our opinions and I hope Chris stops by to see that we support him.
    3938 days ago
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    3938 days ago
    Thanks for writing this blog. I was absolutely disgusted when I read one of the Coach's blogs a couple weeks ago and read such nasty, venom filled replies. How have we come so far in a society where it's permissable to disrespect people so easily? It completely floored me.

    You are absolutely right in reminding people that we are truly blessed to have all of these tools at our fingertips and the sacrifice and hard work so many give to make it possible.

    3938 days ago
    All I can say is AMEN to this! I am astonished at some of the things I read here on SparkPeople as far as complaints go. I will forever be grateful to Chris and the SparkPeople team (and I have told him this) for the changes they've helped me make in my life.

    SparkPeople and SparkAmerica are FREE SITES!!!

    I have paid good money on other sites that did not provide a fraction of the service and help found here. My life is forever changed for the better because of SparkPeople. If SparkAmerica can offer some of those same opportunities for change to a broader group of people, I say GO FOR IT!
    3938 days ago
  • no profile photo CD6372002
    3938 days ago
    I'm grateful to be able to track for my family and show them they are on the right track. I also think that SPAmerica is a great place to begin. I know I was overwhelmed when I first started SP and had a hard time navigating the site because there was so much to offer. I'm grateful for the new site. I didn't know there was negative feedback about it and it's in such contrast to the usual extremely high levels of support I find here - maybe it's just like any tool or system, people can be reluctant to accept change or something new at first. Chris and SP - you've done a great job and I wish you continued success!!
    3938 days ago
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    Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.