We associate crutches with being broken, limited ability to do things, and being needy hence we have developed the term “crutches” as a negative. We label things as being crutches that are preventing us from standing on our own two feet, dealing with our issues, as a means of avoidance, and a distraction from what needs to be taken care of.  This seems to imply that we as beings are isolated units that should be a closed system not needing any other input in order to run efficiently and what we are built to do. This of course is an incredibly mechanistic way of looking at being human. To be health we need to be interconnected and inter dependent. Yes, we need to be part of the team and provide our unique skills, perspective and voice, but we don’t do it in isolation.  We aren’t self-contained, we are social and interconnected and meant to be helped as much as we help.

So crutches are good things for when we are broken. They help us to heal faster and still be able to live our lives albeit modified for a time. They aren’t negative in and of themselves. It’s how we use them that causes negative or positive outcomes. However there are many things in life that we mislabel as crutches. Medications that support our physical, You need Allies To Get Through LIfeemotional and mental health, activities which can seem antisocial but in fact nurture us at deep levels, activities which seem frivolous but allow our brains to rest and our bodies to de-stress after a large amount of taxing work, or even hobbies which allow us to explore our creativity and express joy.  Instead of being crutches, instead these are allies that support us in being the best we can be in any given day. Just as we look for our tribe, our community and family which will welcome who we are and support who we are becoming, so we should recognize those things in our life who are allies to our health and well-being.

Change and transformation happen when we push at our edges, stretch beyond what we know and expand into what is possible. However, to do that we need solid ground under our feet.  We need the right supplies to support us in the endeavor. We need to be prepared mentally/emotionally/physically to undertake the journey and we need allies to help us get there.  What most people don’t pay attention to is that it is transformative just getting prepared for the trip.  Getting in shape, making the necessary connections, letting the rest of life sort itself into a new priority order so that resources funnel towards the goal of setting off to the edge, all of that transforms before we ever leave. Having allies to support and cheer us on, to help us in the process and keep us on track isn’t a failing or an indication that something is broken, its common sense.