Blog Article 

 Personal Advocacy 

Michael Santos

Michael Santos

When you learn more about how to advocate for yourself or the people you love, you take an important step toward building a better outcome. 

If you’re facing a problem, you want to resolve it. Unfortunately, you may not know quite what to do—or what to do first. Remember that the right decision at the wrong time is the wrong decision. To be an effective personal advocate, you’ve got to make the right decisions at the right time.

Our team will give you the guidance you need to restore confidence and get you on the right path. No one can change the past, but with good personal advocacy, you can sow seeds for a better future.

You may want proof that personal advocacy campaigns can lead to a better life for you. Fine. Scroll to the bottom of this page and you will see how lessons in personal advocacy helped me climb through 26 years in federal prison. I’m Michael Santos, and I’m confident that the lessons I learned from leaders can help you build a better life.

Consider the following questions:

  • Are you facing challenges with a government investigation? Our personal advocacy program will help you make better decisions. 
  • Are you facing challenges with a looming sentencing hearing? Then start restoring confidence by learning tactics to advocate for yourself.
  • Do you anticipate serving a sentence in prison, or do you have a loved one in prison? Then learn strategies to improve the situation.

That’s what personal advocacy is all about.

What is an Advocate?

Essentially, an advocate is someone that works to create a better outcome. Frequently, we think of an advocate as being a lawyer. But that isn’t always the case. A lawyer may be essential when authorities bring a criminal charge. Even so, by learning more about personal advocacy, a person will grow stronger in the face of adversity.

To get the best possible outcome, a person needs to start with a simple SWOT analysis:

  • Strength: What are my strengths?
  • Weaknesses: What are my weaknesses?
  • Opportunities: What are my opportunities?
  • Threats: What are my threats? 

In ordinary times, a person can likely answer those questions. Yet when a person is in crisis, it’s hard to think straight. Our life starts to spin out of control, and we can’t find our way. Those who studied through an introductory psychology course may remember Maslow’s theory on a Hierarchy of Needs. Basically, if a person doesn’t feel safe, the individual loses a capacity to think critically, or to navigate a way to a better outcome from the challenge. 

When authorities target a person for either a civil or criminal investigation, that person may start to feel the ground slipping out from under him. He may feel as if his very existence will implode.

  • An attorney may not have the bandwidth to respond to all questions. 
  • A person may be in prison and not know how to access information.
  • A person may want to know how to help a loved one.

In these instances, a person should learn more about self-advocacy. Anyone grows stronger by investing time to learn strategies. 

  • What have others done to work through problems? 

Learn how to answer that question, and you will be on your way to stability. You’ll stop that feeling of spinning out of control.

How Long Does Advocacy Take?

Sometimes self-advocacy projects can be years in the making. Yet if done right, the seeds that you sow today will bear fruit for a lifetime. By architecting a good self-advocacy campaign, you may coordinate:

  • Better resolutions from government investigations,
  • Lower prison sentences,
  • Better conditions on supervised release,
  • Better outcomes for community service,
  • Better experiences in prison,
  • Earlier transitions to home confinement,
  • Higher income opportunities upon release,
  • Earlier termination of Supervised Release.

Lessons exist in every story. But there are two questions:

  • Does the person want to invest the time to learn?
  • Does the person know where to find coaches or mentors that can help him learn?

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