5 Lousy Excuses for Walking Away from an Advocacy Practice – and 1 Very Good One

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5 Lousy Excuses for Walking Away from an Advocacy Practice – and 1 Very Good One

The blame game has been on my mind recently after several emails or phone conversations, plus the results of an exit survey offered when APHA memberships expire. In all cases, people gave reasons (as in, excuses) for why they felt like it was time to give up their practices or let their memberships expire. In almost every case where someone actually started a practice, then decided to step away, they blame some part of their practice that didn’t work out. They wanted to be independent advocates. They certainly expected to succeed when they got started. Their passion and drive were clearly there!  But – they failed. And there is always a reason, or more like a lousy excuse. It makes me sad, because they have given up dreams, because there will be people who don’t get the help they need, and because if they had been more diligent, those negatives didn’t need to happen. Thus today’s post. Because the rest of us can learn so much from lousy excuses!  Here are five of them (in no particular order), along with the reasons why they don’t hold water.  Plus one great reason to walk away – one we can all admire. Here are the excuses I hear, and a response to each. Lousy Excuse #1. Healthcare changes so fast I can’t keep up with it. Seriously? The whole point of being a professional advocate is knowing the basics of the system. The truth is, the basics don’t change that much. The details might change, but they generally adhere to the “follow the money” rule. For the most part, staying in touch with your profession by being part of a professional organization, or subscribing to professional listserves or discussion forums, or reading blogs, or even just the news – these are important requirements for any profession. In that way the amount of change advocates must keep pace with is no more or less than any other profession. And don’t forget – one of the most important reasons someone hires an advocate is because clients fear those changes. It’s worthwhile staying up with…


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