Construct a powerful support system with these tips from the Cerebral Palsy Vigilante!

Constructing Your Support System

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Support systems prove powerful. With the right support system the impossible becomes possible. You obtain a light to guide you through gloomy times. Your support system keeps your motivation fueled. Enough empty imagery though!

Rather than continuing along using repetitive phrases, let us get practical. After all, talking about how the right support system benefits you fails to mean anything if you lack said support system. Therefore today I wish to offer some advice on constructing your support system.


Any time you consume advice, remember to contemplate the source. Does the wisdom come from firsthand experience? Answering this question works to evaluate credibility. Perhaps now you possess something you want to ask me.

Yes, my forthcoming tips remain rooted within personal experience. Earlier I noted a support system could transform the impossible into possible. Surely you might dismiss such words as hyperbole. However, I am able to name a specific example to support my word choice.

Once a short while ago I deemed completing a marathon unreasonable. Given my balance, the way I move, and just my cerebral palsy overall walking 26.2 miles seemed impractical. Impossible! Upon finishing a half marathon I felt I reached my physical peak. At least until my support system activated!

Initially my friend and race sponsor Team IBB President James Schleicher persisted I pursue the full 26.2-mile distance. Eventually I agreed to. Following that decision people began to steadfastly rally around me. Two years later I sit here a TWO-TIME marathoner. Besides the opportunity to brag, I share to show my credentials for advising ways to develop a strong support system. The proceeding suggestions enabled me to build the support system I fully enjoy.

On the Towpath Marathon course side by side with my friend and race sponsor Team IBB President James Schleicher.
While I once considered a marathon impossible for me, James believed otherwise.

Become a Control Freak

Admittedly, the suggestion to become a control freak sounds odd. The label carries a negative connotation. Yet there stands instances where acting controlling produces positive results. One such instance involves the company you keep.

People compose your support system. Hence who you choose to hang with directly impacts your support system’s effectiveness. Individuals always complaining will consequently dampen your spirits, intentional or not.

Previously I mentioned James. Prior to completely enjoying James’ beneficial influence, my primary social interactions included a certain group. Friends begrudgingly content working traditional jobs and occupying weekends drinking away weekly stresses. Ultimately these friends and I suffered a falling out. My suffering friendships gradually transitioned to personal thriving.

Soon I found myself progressing towards my then goal to complete a half marathon, pursue public speaking, and more. The timing stood no coincidence, I am confident. Negativity distracts. Putting space between you and naysayers opens you to better intake encouraging vibes.

Hear the Clapperboard

Although removing negative forces helps open you to positivity, you do endure risk. Loneliness may find you before optimists. To reduce your risk, listen carefully to your surroundings. Hear the clack? Life’s clapperboard echoes, shouting to you “Action!”

Many positive people hold a common attribute, an inclination to act. Thus to meet individuals potentially valuable to your support system you too should act. Attend events your local library hosts. Join a class, whether yoga, martial arts, water aerobics, etcetera.

Easy advice to give, difficult to implement I wholly understand. Possibly due to cerebral palsy you face transportation complications. Feasibly your hesitation deals less with logistics, but alternatively self-consciousness. Arm yourself to combat the latter utilizing these five questions.

Anyways to stay to today’s topic, realize you simply need an Internet connection to construct your support system. Explore the World Wide Web to discover online communities relevant to you. Twitter chats represent an enriching option. I continuously witness and feel myself the real connections an online community supplies via my role co-hosting the weekly CP Twitter chat #CPChatNow. Consider joining sometime. #CPChatNow happens every Wednesday starting at 8pm ET.             

Faithful Emulation

Regardless whether you select to develop your support system through in-person events or online communities, a single factor remains imperative. Genuinely seek to serve others. Emphasize genuinely. Think emulating the greatest priest, nun, rabbi. Emulate their desire to serve.

Religious leaders provide service to help, oppose to collecting favors. An accounting mindset where you track your service and reason “You owe me” ends up counterproductive. You grow resentful, poisoning your potential support system.

Instead maintain genuine intentions. Listen to a peer vent to supply him an outlet. Extend a helping hand to reduce someone else’s workload. Ensure the action alone fulfills you. Subsequently good karma shall treat you well.     

Multiple examples arrive to my mind. A good number relate to support my library co-workers displayed after learning I planned to complete the Towpath Marathon again in 2018. I work an entry level position, making slightly above Ohio minimum wage and receiving zero benefits. Justifiably I could disgruntledly pout and exhibit minimal effort performing my duties. Nonetheless each shift I perform my tasks to my best abilities, smiling. I believe my efforts made my co-workers eager to encourage prior to the race and celebrate my vast improvement afterwards.  

Support System Constructed

Utilizing the advice offered throughout today’s post will enable you to construct an empowering support system. To recap, control the company you keep. Eliminate naysayers from your life. Instead find positive people by heeding life’s clapperboard call to take action. This might mean attending local events, participating in a class, or joining an online community like #CPChatNow.

No matter the how, remember to emulate great religious leaders and genuinely serve others. Good karma will subsequently treat you well. Activate said good karma and serve others by sharing below your own advice for constructing a strong support system. Leave your tips via a comment.

 Until next time remember. Do not blend in. Blend out!


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