Getting Your Good Life

A Checklist of Important Stuff

An Agenda for Change
LivesthroughFriends approach to complexity is invariably to seek a simple framework that ensures that you can distinguish the different trees in the wood. Generally we try to consolidate the key areas for attention and/or action to no more than 5 or 6 key elements. In the case of self-direction and the planning and delivery of sympathetic support for people who need our care there are, for us, just 6 vital considerations:

Strive to fulfil the promise of personalisation – focus upon the whole individual – Ask a Different Question – “What is your Good Life?”
Amongst it all, check that you are dealing with relationships, financial security, opportunities to contribute, a place of my own, and safety and security.

Develop and practice your creative thinking and problem-solving capabilities.
Become more skilled in thinking “outside the box‟ and in responding to what someone really wants and needs in a bespoke way rather than to the menu of services of which you are aware. At LivesthroughFriends we use and recommend the Go MAD (Make a Difference) Thinking approach.

Life begins and ends with relationships.
Make sure that the person you are helping has enough loving and caring relationships in their life. If they don’t, do something to remedy it. This is not a quick fix. However there is no substitute for heartfelt and freely given care and support nor for access to social capital. We practice the Network Facilitation approach developed by PLAN. Relationships are the foundations of inclusion and citizenship.

Our lives are enhanced and made secure through our contribution to others through our ‘Associations.
We need to be active in securing opportunities for the people we help to participate in all the ‘associations’ of community life – work, leisure, sports, the arts, politics, mutual aid, volunteering. It is essential to direct resources at promoting interdependent communities. We are experienced “animateurs” who continue to learn – presently from Asset Based Community Development thinkers and practitioners, the flourishing Time Banking movement, and many small initiatives.

Don’t lose sight of the fact that you are a Leader.
Lots of people have got used to being clients and victims, neither responsible for nor in control of their lives. Wreaking a change in this will demand your vision, all your personal development and empowerment resources, and your team and ‘movement’ building abilities. Nurture the animateur in you! Don’t just light a candle, be the light!
And finally, a golden rule, when support planning, start with the community and save most of the money for things the community can’t do (or can’t do better).