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One Powerful Word – Balance

Diabetes is a chronic condition that can be effectively managed, but the management “demands” can seem overwhelming. With type 2 diabetes the most challenging demands are changing lifestyle habits – diet, exercise, sleep, etc. – when those habits might have decades of reinforcement by repetition. It’s no secret that behavior change is difficult, but success over the long term requires balance. Balance is finding a place between giving up completely in frustration (or never trying in the first place), and becoming completely overtaken by diabetes self-management.

Giving up on diabetes management is surrendering your physical health, and with type 2 diabetes it can seem like the best option for a while. That’s because high blood glucose levels often don’t cause severe symptoms in the short term (type 1 diabetes is a different story). Ultimately, however, persistent high blood glucose levels take a toll, sometimes a terrible toll. Giving up on, or ignoring, diabetes management is a very bad long term strategy.

But, obsessing over self-management behaviors – looking for perfection – can be surrendering your mental health. That’s because perfection is not possible. There are simply too many variables, both physical and emotional, to perfectly control blood glucose.

Fortunately, long term health with diabetes is about averages – no perfection is required. And, virtually anything you do to better manage diabetes has some benefit – 30 minutes of exercise is best, but 10 minutes in beneficial. Finding a balance between your real life and your “diabetes life” is very important. And, as time passes you’ll find you can continuously shift your balance point toward even more effective diabetes self-management habits as new habits become rock-solid.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.