If you follow this blog at all, you have probably noticed my absence from the web over the past few weeks. Aside from a social post here and there I have lacked motivation to share my experiences with you despite my epic adventures as of late. This lack of motivation is partly due to my recent bout of diabetes burnout. Since coming to terms with my diagnosis and really buckling down on my health two years ago this has been my first serious spell of burnout. My job as a bartender and recent travel leaves no room for routine in my life, making T1D management challenging. I grew increasingly fed up with trying to do everything right and still having crazy blood sugars. I grew tired of restricting my diet so I returned to some of my pre-diabetes eating habits and lacked the motivation to exercise. I found myself feeling lethargic and lower than I have felt in awhile. Until two days ago when I decided to stop feeling sorry for myself and to take a deep look at this low point and find a lesson to be learned. Diabetes is an intense full time job with no benefits or rewards. With T1D, feeling overwhelmed by our situation is understandable but I want to be stronger than this disease, I want to use my situation as a source of inspiration for others facing hurdles in this life.
“Being challenged in life is inevitable, being defeated is optional.” -Roger Crawford
Coupled with the diabetes burnout was a bit of internet burnout as well. As I became increasingly fed up with T1D and began to push blood sugar management to the back of my mind I lost site of the reason I started Travelbetic in the first place. After weeks of high blood sugars I couldn’t bring myself to try and inspire other T1Ds when I couldn’t even keep my own sugars in range. Aside from that, who is even reading this stuff anyway? With an unfathomable amount of digital content on the web is anyone actually taking the time to read my ramblings or watch my videos?
Looking back on the last six months of my blogging habits I question some of my actions. Are all the hashtags, paid ads and retweets really contributing to my goal of inspiring others? I feel that I have let the modern ways of the web infiltrate my original motivation behind Travelbetic. Ive let it shape my writing and my voice and that bums me out.
Aside from the hope of helping others, this blog also helps me tremendously. Travelbetic keeps me on track. It holds me accountable for my health and my actions. It’s no wonder I began to feel burnt out by diabetes when I was feeling burnt out by blogging and the internet as a whole. But my vision for Travelbetic has returned and so has my passionate motivation to seize the day and conquer the daily challenges of T1D.
To stay true to my readers is to stay true to myself so from here on out I promise Travelbetic will be a raw glimpse into my journeys, struggles and triumphs, true to the purpose of hopefully inspiring you to conquer the struggles in your own life and live to the fullest extent of your being. No the site may not follow a strict post schedule or you may not see me on social media quite as much, but I promise everything under the Travelbetic brand will be genuine and serve to inspire, motivate and with any luck, bring together a few diabetics who love to challenge themselves and get out into this big wide world despite any obstacle.
So what lessons did I learn from this bout of internet and diabetes burnout?
- To own my voice and keep it pure from false motivations and to share my experiences no matter who or how many are reading. If I touch one person I have succeeded.
- Taking a break from an idea and expectations is healthy. A break from blogging, from sharing. A break from my self expectations of my diabetes care. Theres no such thing as perfect. We can do everything right all of the time and our sugars can still play games, we have diabetes, it’s just the way it is.
- To focus more on the way I feel rather than what the meter reads. Blood glucose meters can be as off as 20%-40% anyway, but more importantly, the way I feel is ultimately the most accurate test of my health. If a number is off I can correct it rather easily but if I feel off, be it from a low BG or recent neglect in care, something needs to change.
- Think small. Take change one step at a time. For me the first step was exercising again, then buckling down on my meal choices and remembering to bolus pre-meal.
- Talk about it. Opening up about my burnout symptoms helped me gain perspective and refocus on getting everything back under control.
“Life’s challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they’re supposed to help you discover who you are.” -Bernice Johnson Reagon
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