Eating Elephants!

Well, it’s that time of year again.
When we resolve that we will do better!
 To lose weight?
 Give up smoking?
 Eat more healthy?
 Eat our five a day fruit and veg?
 Go for long walks?
 Be at one with nature?
New Years Resolutions!
Do any of us really stick to them, do we?
The one thing that affects all of these self-promises is MOTIVATION!
Keeping motivated is not easy for anyone…
There are so many distractions and temptations out there to trip us up…
Put diabetes into the equation means that you have to ensure you keep yourself
motivated, regardless of, where you are on the calendar!
So how do you keep motivated?
1. Keep your goals simple, achievable
2. Once you have reached said goal; you move on to the next simple achievable goal
Sounds easy, but it so is, okay let us look at an HbA1c result:
You go to your diabetes clinic today, they give you a result of 93mmol/mol (10.7%), both you and your healthcare professional know it’s too high.
Now it could be that last time you came for your result it was 97mmol/mol (11%) or it has stayed the same – my reaction would be well done you!
Why? It hasn’t increased. So a change has happened? You were motivated!
Your HbA1c is a retrospective result (a past status) it shows how well you controlled your blood sugar, in those 120 days prior to your blood going to the laboratory.
So when you are given the result good, bad or indifferent you have another 3 months or 120 days, till your next blood result, to make a difference. It is, in fact, your New Year!
HbA1c results are not for making you feel guilty!
They are there for your guidance to ensure good control, as in a marker, as are all your other blood results.
Every time you make that diabetes clinic attendance you are there to be inspired and re-motivated to achieve better control.
Both you and your health professional are there to work together to aid you in maintaining as good a control as possible.
Did you know that an improvement to control can aid your reduction of Diabetes Retinopathy – as small as reducing your HbA1c by 0.5% or 6mmol/mol in 3 months will create a change
In retinal screening clinics, we don’t want massive reductions because we know it can also cause problems.
As Health Professionals we can be a nightmare, we have research and evidence saying that HbA1c needs to be at a certain level for good control. quite rightly in an intense research-managed environment.
 But take a step back imagine it’s you!
24 hours – 7 days a week 365 days a year, continually aware that you have to keep your fasting blood sugar level no higher than 6-7mmol/l. (Those older 7-8mm0l/l.)
Be real it is not that cut and dried. Just follow #ourD tweetchat (twitter) on a Tuesday night 8-9pm and listen to what those living and coping with diabetes have to say.
Now think of your New Years resolutions, are they really achievable?
Of course, they are and why because you will have something motivating you on.
For more help and advice google Diabetes UK
A much-loved Nurse Manager, Chris Sharples, used to say to me all the time when I was trying to conquer the world of Diabetes, in a day.
“You can only eat an elephant, one mouthful at a time!”
Happy New Year and good wishes to you all!
© 5 January 2015 MC

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