my blood sugar always seems to be high, and my A1C is just awful. When I do check my blood sugar very often, and eat descent foods my blood sugar is manageable. I know the answer to all my problems is to just get on top of things. However; I just pig out and never test my blood sugar. I think I just need to be motivated to check it, and keep better track of what i eat. can anybody help me? give me some motiviation?

Hi Marina!
The problem with diabetes motivation is that it IS hard to stay motivated ALL the time! We all know what we can and should do, it’s just finding the willpower or energy or whatever to get doing it.

My motviation is that I want to be healthy for a long time. I work as an optician (in an optometry office). Over the years (before I was diagnosed) I have met many people who are older diabetics with eye issues. Most of them said they realize the complications they have are from bad control or ignoring thier diabetes entirely when they were young. Unforturnately, regret years later can’t undo it.

I want to travel the world, laugh lots, enjoy everything that’s out there. Being healthy now is the best way to make sure I can do it all!

Happy New Year to you,

Hi Marina,

Although my diabetes (Type 2) is not as hard to manage as Type 1 my motivation is that when I am much older I do not want to be a burden on my family with complications from poor control in my earlier years. That is what drives me forward. There is always going to be highs and lows but I try to minimize them… Good Luck.

Unfortunately, if you keep this up your motivation is going to come from something negative. Please don’t keep putting yourself in a situation where you are risking your health in order to get “motivated”. There is not one perfect diabetic. It’s not possible. However, you can set a goals to eat more of certain foods and less of others. Notice how I said less…not stop. We are human, just try to manage what you eat and it should go better than if you try to restrict yourself. On top of that, you really should step up your testing. It’s your tool to management. Your motivation should be that you want to stay healthy… My explaination to my daughter was that high blood sugar is a sneaky one. You won’t notice it right away, but over time…it’s going to play hell on some organ in your body. How you decide to handle is it up to you…now or later…you are going to have to manage your diabetes. Proactive versus Reactive.

It helps me to have diabetic friends. We have such an incredible understanding of each other. I also go to a seminar or class on diabetes once in awhile, even though I have had type I for 39 years.
The holidays have been tough for me. All that food, food and more food. Anyways, I always struggle with motivation and food portions, snacks and just wanting to graze continuously.
I have also found that exercise helps me. I have to pay closer attention to my bg levels. They are way easier to control when I’m active and I feel so much better. I haven’t been exercising for awhile now. I don’t think I feel poorly but once I get in shape I feel so good that I’m motivated to keep it up. I’ve been thinking about making use of my gym membership again because I want to feel good. Thanks for the motivation!

It’s hard to stay MOTIVATED all the time. Instead of thinking of caring for yourself as requiring constant, grinding, uplifting MOTIVATION!! take things in small steps and look for ‘opportunities to do a good deed.’ Waiting around for MOTIVATION!! is a bad form of laziness. Instead, look for “efficiency” - the GOOD form of laziness.

For instance, do you ‘just pig out’? Look at when and where you pig out. If you only visit restaurants that serve healthy food you don’t have to worry about being ‘motivated’ to buy good stuff to eat - that’s all that’s there. If you only buy healthy food at the grocery store, you don’t have to be ‘motivated’ to avoid unhealthy stuff at home. That’s substituting ‘opportunity’ for 'MOTIVATION!!" Eat too much at a sitting? Eat standing up. (And never in the car.) Drink a lot of disgusting stuff? Carry a water bottle instead. Small things that create opportunity to do good for yourself and don’t require motivation. Does it require motivation to buy a bottle of water? Well, you only have to buy it once. After that you can just refill it.

Never test your blood sugar? NEVER? Set a small goal for yourself to test before each meal and to test in pairs. By testing ‘in pairs’ I mean create a compulsion to match each pre-meal test with a post-meal test. First focus on testing before each meal. Remind yourself that you have to match that test with one more in order to balance the universe. Remember when you walked home as a kid and you had to touch each part of a fence in a certain order or something terrible would happen? Same idea. If you make it a compulsion you don’t have to be MOTIVATED!! (Unless you consider preventing the destruction of the world as we know it a sort of motivation.)

Take small steps. Do one thing at a time. Soon it won’t require any more MOTIVATION to test your blood than it does to tie your shoe or take a shower. Just don’t try to become “the World’s Most Motivated Diabetic” all at once. That requires MOTIVATION and a ton of work and will probably lead to total and complete failure because NONE of us are motivated all the time. Instead, take the lazy man’s way and slowly add things to your routine so that they become second nature and require zero motivation - you just do them.


From now on, every chance is a second chance.

Good luck,


Set realistic expectations. Despite your best efforts, you won’t ever have perfect control of your diabets. Trying to change too much at once will always result in burnout. Set goals, write them down, and then prioritize them. Implement them over time. Did you know that Michael Jordon didn’t make his high school basketball team the first year he tried out? He worked and worked until he developed the skills he needed to be proficient. He still doesn’t make every shot.

Have you read the book “Think Like a Pancreas”? This book suggests you set small goals for yourself to get started. For instance, start by getting good blood sugar levels before bed. Then add when you get up. Stuff like that so you don’t get overwhelmed. This book totally motivated me.

My one severe vice is spaghetti. Well, angel hair pasta with my homemade tomato sauce, to be more specific. Since I know that I don’t have the self control to stop at 1 serving (45 g carbs), I make myself eat at least as much broccoli as I do pasta. Usually I double the volume of pasta to get my broccoli serving. Eat a handful of nuts like a half hour before a meal. Stuff like this helps me control my portions.

Hi Marina,

For me it is having that connection with my Doctor. I need someone outside of myself to “check up on me once in awhile” and tell me if Im doing great, doing ok, or doing terrible! . I have told my Doctor to talk to me like House does in the TV show. I want the good the bad and am I meeting targets and are my targets realistic. I have made a commitment to meet with my Dr every 2 months. This is my GP not my Endo, but my GP is very supportive of my goals and is not afraid to talk to my Endo to advocate for me… Bottom line is that you need a support system to keep you on track. Just reading TUDiabetes on a daily basis will help too.

Lastly, If I where just diagnosed as a Type 1 today and I met you Marina, what would you tell me today on how to live my life and how to deal with being a Type 1? Helping others goes along way too in helping yourself achieve goals…

Best of luck Marina, Keep posting too and let us know how its going! Take care…

It is like global warning. We see the numbers are rising since industrialization. We can not smell that the carbon is accumulating in the atmosphere. We can not smell that the oceans are turning sour due to the higher carbon intake. It takes effords but effords will cost money and the next election is only years away. So we wait until the unpleasant consequences will force us to make hard decisions. For these decisions the quality of life of many people will be very irrelevant when survival is at stake.

Yes, it is not very nice. But sitting in a wheelchair forever or being told that cancer will take your life in a short period of time is utterly unfair. We can be so glad to have a life threatening illness that is so managable. We have faced imminent death and now we can reach 98% of quality in life and 98% of life expectancy. We just have to recognize that we are not making the rules here. It is like a job: do it right and get some money for it, do it well and be rewarded in some way. So reward yourself for the good management you have reached.

That all said: I do not want to criticize you for having problems to motivate yourself. This happens all the time - even to me. But to focus on ‘I can not eat what I want’ and ‘I have to test all the time’ is a total waste of time. It is like to complain that you have to breathe. Accept it, manage it and enjoy your life. The better you control your D the less energy it will cost you. Thus you can focus on other things in life that are important for you.

To recognize all that helped me a lot. It also helped to keep a diary and to face the problems with D management I might have. At first this can have a demotivating effect but at the same time it gives you the power to be in charge of your situation. As a consequence I have decided to create the project to make sure that my diary keeping is managable (I am on MDI). For a pumper this might be more easy to achieve if the collected data can be exported and analysed. All you have to do: find your problems and fix them in an ongoing process. To have some bad days is nothing to get frustrated about. Frustration would start for me if I would accept or be passive about longer periods of bad control. Having manifested with 17 years it took 10 years to fully accept that. Being free of complications after more than 20 years is my reward and I hope this is a good motivation for you.

I think my motivation is that the disease is simply, very real to me. I have seen my father gradually deteriorate from Type 2 (on just a diet), to taking oral meds, to taking insulin, to getting neuropathy of the legs, losing his eyesight, having heart disease, and strokes, and having his kidneys fail so he had to dialise, and not being able to walk again, or take care of his own personal hygiene… He was about to have a foot amputated, one morning, when he died from respiratory failure. When you see these things yourself, growing up with someone you love… It is so hard, and difficult. You go through the feelings of grief, and loss, even before they have passed away. You are angry at them, a lot, for not taking better care of themselves. You have no idea how much this will damage and hurt your family, and loved ones. For me, it is not easy to forget, or easy to lose motivation. It’s not just some distant story someone has said to me. It is real. And it happens fast, too. Maybe arranging with your doctor to meet some people who are going through these things right now, might be of some benefit. Not to try to be scary here, but I just don’t think I would keep very motivated, had I already not gone through that hell, once in my life.

Best of luck.

You know the consequences. You know how to manage your blood sugar. You are motivated. But you are falling off the wagon and deliberately sabotaging yourself. You don’t test your blood sugar cause you know that it will be way too high and you would be unhappy about that. I bet you feel guilty afterwards.

You need to stop thinking about this as a motivation problem and try to think about why you are doing this? Are you feeling burned out? Are you feeling deprived? Are you depressed?

Let me give you a suggestion. It may or may not help. Give yourself a regular weekly structured “cheat.” But instead of an uncontrolled “pig out,” choose ahead of time things that you really enjoy. Perhaps a special Godiva chocolate bar. Let yourself have that cheat, but at the time and place of your choosing and most important of all with a quantity and kind of food and carbs that “you control.” This is not some uncontrolled “pig out,” this is a premeditated thing you are going to “treat” yourself. Be happy about it and enjoy every minute of it.

Sure, you may go a bit high from this, but you can correct it and most of all you “never” lose control. And besides, I bet your high from a structured cheat is by far lower than your current pattern. Hope that is helpful.

Small steps as others said is the best way to get on top of things…

When I was in college, I didn’t test often…so trying to go from rarely to multiple times a day is very hard…so my first goal was just to test first thing in the morning… then slowly adding more in …like before meals… and then after meals (the pairs idea that Terry mentioned)…

One of the other things that motivated me… was hearing from people here at TuD on how they mentally handle being high…which is not to equate as a reflection of yourself, but deal with it as a person… because even if you’ve pigged out or done something “bad”…it’s not like you ever asked to have diabetes in the first place…so while highs are not good at least by testing you know they’re there and they are something you can deal with by correcting with insulin…

After that…I think the more effort you put in the better you start to feel (either less tired etc. from being high often and/or feeling more in control from not having constant dramatic swings) which can then be your motivation for even better care of yourself… so you want to start tesitng for other events (before after exercise, before and after driving, while drinking etc.)…

While long term goals are good…they don’t provide immediate and constant motivation… at some point you just have to decide that you want to take care of yourself because you’re worth it… and then start doing it one step at a time :slight_smile:

Hey Marina,
My moitivation came towards the end of last year when my doctor told me that I might have damage to my eyes,I thought oh my God no way the first think that came to my mind was driving as I just passed will I ever be able to drive.The doctor made me an appointment to get my eyes tested but didnt want to go as I had such rubbish treatment the last time I went.
I went home feeling some what lost I was here but my mind and soul where somewhere else just thinking.
I soon made an appointment to get my eyes checked out at my local as I wanted to know what sort of damage went the next day and got the all clear but my heart was still not at rest went to my hospital eye test and waited,waited,test after test it seemed like I was waiting for ever just wanted answers.
So then my answer came after a very long wait all clear and on top of that my results where even better then the year before. :slight_smile:

My motivation fear to be honest fear of complications and you are still young you dont want anymore trouble for me diabetes is more then enough thank you very much.So test,test and test that what I am doing the nurses at the hospital all know who I am now seeing as I am on the phone every week or down there to talk to

Good luck and if you need a good old speech on encouragement or motivation I am just a click

Hi Marina (what a beautiful name!)

I am a T2, and so my issues are not the same as yours, but I want to point out that you look like an attractive young girl, with so much to live for, and the idea that there is a great guy out there looking for you, is important to remember, because when you find each other, you want to be in control and condition so you can enjoy all that life with him will offer you. Don’t deprive him of the special person that Marina is. He deserves the best you have to give, even if you don’t know him yet.

Motivation is a problem for a lot of people, and its not just over diabetes. Again, my condition is not as complex as yours, and I don’t need motivation to cope with the diabetes. Its all the other things in life that I am failing miserably at, like finding work, finding someone to love who loves me, and deciding what to do with what remains of my life. I would venture a guess that you are just a normal 16 year old, and that in itself means you really don’t want to have to think, you just want to have fun. You are entitled, btw, :slight_smile: but remember its part of the maturation process to find it difficult to overcome obstacles.

Pigging out when you know is wrong, is just the self destructive side of yourself, rebelling against what has happened to you. That will not go away until you replace the desire, with something constructive. If you didn’t have diabetes, you would be unmotivated in other areas. Its not a shot at you, its normal and natural.

Baby steps, and small changes are your best bet. Doing anything that drastically alters your lifestyle will likely cause you to fail. You say that your numbers are okay when you manage them, so your problem is the “pig out” urge, which is simply your way of rebelling. Attack that urge, and break it into manageable events, and then reduce it from there. I don’t know what you pig out on :slight_smile: but say its brownies, for the sake of making the point. If you eat four brownies, just eat three instead. Instantly, you reduced your intake by 25% which is an improvement. Over time, you will be able to reduce by another brownie, and now you have cut your bad intake in half. That’s a pretty big step, and will make a difference both in your control, and in your state of mind. It might take a while, but that will be a big accomplishment, and your numbers will reflect that change for the better. Winning is a great motivator, so set yourself up, so you can win.

There is no way you are going to just quit over indulging instantly. That is asking an awful lot of anyone. It takes time to effect change. Baby steps.

I would very much like to teach you all that I have learned in my lifetime. I have made every possible mis-step, and screwed up so many things, its remarkable I have gotten this far with my brains anywhere near intact. The world is out there waiting for Marina to take it by the horns and subdue it, yet my recollection of being your age is that such a thing doesn’t matter to you yet. Best advice I can give you is, it does matter, and you don’t have to turn your life around on a dime, but start turning it a little bit. When they started flying to the moon, they had a long journey, and so course corrections we small, but over the length of the trip, a small change in direction made a huge difference their course over time. Same with you life, and your habits. Small changes may seem irrelevant right now, but given the length of your journey, those small course changes will result in big changes over time. You don’t need to correct your course 100%, right this very moment.

When you start to save money, its hard because there is only a few dollars in the jar, but the more dollars you put in there, the more you begin to see the benefit of the savings. Make tiny changes right now, and note them, and soon you will see benefit to changes, and be wanting to make bigger changes over time.

I have foot problems that are not related to diabetes, or so I am told, and I cannot walk very much without a lot of pain and suffering. Hiking the backcountry of the Rockies is what has kept me going the last few decades. Now I cannot do that, and although I cannot blame the diabetes, I am sick to think that it is the result of something that I could have avoided, if I had taken the time to better care for myself.

Please don’t let the last thirty or forty years of your life be pain and suffering, filled with “if only” and “What if” all the while second guessing yourself over choices you made when you were young.

If you want to talk, lets chat private. If you want to vent, or rant and rave, I am one who will listen and will not judge you. I am someone who would love a second chance at being a teenager, because now I see how important it is to have fun, be a teen, but I also now know how important it is to keep an eye on the future.

Trust me when I say that when I was your age, I looked at calendars, and saw the year 2010, and never, ever though I would live to be that old (54) so I screwed up, and didn’t make the right choices. None of those choices would have interfered with the enjoyment of my youth, but they would have gone a long way towards making my present condition more enjoyable, and fruitful.

Life is a long journey, and you can’t pack for it like you are just taking a three day weekend camping trip. It takes more than that.

Motivation is something every person deals with on a daily basis. Remember its probably not just the diabetes causing it. Its simply where you are in your life, so work on it, from that perspective, rather than focusing on this damnable disease.

Nuff said, hope I didn’t offend, but be sure and post, and vent and rant, and as I said, if you want to keep it private and anonymous, I am most happy to listen and try to help you.

The human spirit is a remarkable thing, and can drive us through some of the most gosh awful things that we are sure we could never survive, yet we somehow manage. You can do this. Just let others help when they can. You are not alone.


Sounds like you’re having some denial and acceptance issues. I had them for quite a long time after I was diagnosed in 1996. I went through therapy/counseling for 3 years to get to a point where I wasn’t angry all the time.

I’d suggest small steps. Find a support group near where you live. Make sure you get to your endo 3x a year, at least. Test prior to every meal to start. Test before you go to bed. Try to test after breakfast and dinner. Set small goals every few weeks. For example, try to test before every meal by Valentines. When you’re accomplished this, give yourself a small reward. Manicure maybe? Keeping goals small makes them more achievable.

You can’t be motivated every day, its unrealistic. But you need to take care of yourself because this is for the long haul, until further notice, and no one else will do this for you.

You are not alone. We all struggle with this disease and unless you let it control you, you need to put diabetes in its place in your life where you want it!

Good luck

Terry my man, “well said”… is an understatement! YOU got me focused, what a great message with many pearls of wisdom.

Marina, you are NOT ALONE by any means with Diabetes motivation. Staying motivated or getting motivated, I am fighting for one or the other it seems.

I really like what Terry said, its how you look at something. If you only have water, your options are… water.

For example I hear a story about a Lady who ate too much Fast Food. So she would put her Purse in her trunk to make it harder for her to “just pay” for a quick meal or snack. It required her to park her car and get out her purse from the trunk to pay. That step made her save money and lose weight. Kinda funny but true.

Everyone that had replied has great advice!

What a great book.

“Think like a Pancreas” - I have a signed copy … Jealous? LOL Smiles. I like his Quote at the Bottom.
6827-sig.jpg (626 KB)

MY FEET. Love it!

I want to keep my feet so I can keep kicking my kids and hubby in the butt!

Don’t know if this will help so here goes. My motivation is simple, being a freak of nature dx’ed at age 52 and male. What motivated me is already starting to get the old people stuff ie: glass to read, things hurt (joints) etc… ,but what really got me staying on top of type 1 diabetes is being dx’ed in ICU. This was the first time in my life to stay in a hospital, over 50 years no problems, then bang. Knowing that I am on borrowed time, makes me use it wisely, not to be down just being real. My thought is if it wasn’t for modern medicine and Dr. Banting I wouldn’t be here!!! Period!!! I also have a wonderful daughter how is making me a GrandPa and I want to see my granddaughter graduate from High School and Collage and that means I have to live to about another 25 years. (almost 80) AND I WILL!!!