As Chair of the Leg Club Foundation, but essentially still a businessman, I have always been fascinated by what drives successful people. We have all been influenced by significant others, people we respect and who have helped shape our lives in subtle but important ways by standing out in their field.
Someone who has had the most profound effects on me is Christine Marsh. Christine is a Life Coach, Organisation Consultant and Inspirational Speaker, who has inspired individuals and companies around the world through her lectures. She specialises in resolving conflicts through creative solutions and it was in such a scenario that we first made acquaintance. I write about her now because she has recently self-published her first book: ‘Flashpoint transformation: Life's choices—Ready to jump or waiting to be pushed?’ Essentially, it is about whether we want our lives to be controlled by others or by ourselves. Christine's book has inspired this article, as Leg Clubs are very much about taking some control and responsibility for our health and the way we live our lives without fully relying on the NHS.
Leg Clubs are essentially a partnership between the skilled clinical providers of the NHS and the volunteers who run and staff the individual Leg Clubs—the ultimate expression of combining clinical and social care with patient-centred choice and empowerment. What motivates clinicians and members to make the Leg Clubs successful? What motivates some people to keep breaking the mould and delivering innovative care at a time when the NHS is under unprecedented stress? What makes people go that extra mile? What do members get out of the clubs beyond wound healing?
In Leg Clubs, people get involved in their own treatment and are encouraged to take ownership of their health. If we want individuals to help manage their own health, they need to live that experience and be actively involved, not just be told what to do. In the case of Leg Club members, they may need to express their emotions and anxieties, and if we can get them to express their inner feelings, it can go a long way towards their holistic treatment.
Clinicians, in turn, must keep their skills constantly up-to-date and must be motivated to do the best possible job for patients, to be aware of peoples’ mood swings, and how personal and other factors can impact job performance.
The Leg Club is an holistic care model. We all want to know we are doing something useful. For our members this means the volunteering aspect of the Leg Club is a key part of their health and wellbeing, as well as having multiple activities—mental as well as physical—in their daily lives. No matter their disability, everyone has so much to offer and so much to live for.
Material measures of wealth are traditionally those of success—for example, home, car and clothes. But the pandemic has led many to question what really matters to them. There are many ways of measuring success that have nothing to do with material outcomes and can be about looking for new challenges that we find meaningful. This applies regardless of age. What does success mean to our members? It may be walking 100 yards unaided; it may be running a marathon. The more we know of our members’ goals and ambitions, the more we can help them and the more they can achieve.
For Ellie Lindsay, Leg Club Founder and Life President, success is certainly not material but is a never-ending quest to spread the Leg Club word. This drives her and so many others on because each new club in the UK or around the world can be life-changing to thousands of people, and each new Leg Club represents greater success and that further barriers have been overcome.
The Leg Club model has succeeded and continues to grow in spite of the fact that it challenges traditional values and vested interests. If we all do only what we have always done, there would be no progress and no Leg Clubs. One of the quotes I've always lived by is from George Bernard Shaw:
‘The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.’
I normally condense this to the simpler:
‘All progress depends upon unreasonable people’ (i.e. people who do not accept the status quo).
People are living longer; old stereotypes no longer apply. We need to make different choices as our lives and those of the people around us changes, but all can be seized positively; the alternative is to simply conform to other people's norms but who wants that!
If Christine Marsh can write her first book at the age of 81, what is to stop any of our members doing what they want? They just need the energy and motivation to do it. They need to trust their own judgement and be encouraged to do their own thing. Age should not stop our members doing anything they want; they should take back control of what brings them joy, no matter how minor or major that might be. For more information about Christine and how she works, please visit: www.thechristinemarsh.com
The Lindsay Leg Club Foundation is all about our members and their lived experiences. Our job is not just to heal their physical wounds but to also help them live their best lives.
Annual Leg Club conference and gala dinner 2023
In other news, we're back with our annnual conference—same city, new venue! We are delighted to inform you that the Annual Leg Club conference will be held on Wednesday 27 and Thursday 28 September 2023. It's bigger and better than ever, and will celebrate a quarter of a century since the first Leg Club opened. We have huge interest already and there are not many places left, so if you do want to attend the conference and gala dinner, please get in touch with us as soon as possible. For more details, visit: https://www.legclub.org/events
Leg Club Favourites Recipe Book
We still have copies available for sale, with a truly international flavour and contributions from clinicians and members around the world. Please visit our website for more details and to order your copy today! https://www.legclub.org/leg-club-recipe-book
Keep fit with Mr Motivator
Leg Club on the Move with Mr Motivator is held every Wednesday at 6.30 pm. For more information on how you can sign up for free, visit: https://www.legclub.org/leg-club-on-the-move-with-mr-motivator