Patient Blogs | Type 2 Diabetes
What Self-Care With Type 2 Diabetes Means to Me
photo of young woman getting a massage at a spa

Being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes has its ebbs and flows. You’ll have good days and bad days. However, it’s not always about how you start, but how you finish, and in our case, it’s how you manage your diabetes. Managing your diabetes isn’t just about taking your medicine and eating right. It’s also about taking care of yourself (mind, body, and soul). By taking care of yourself, you’re less stressed and more relaxed. When you have diabetes, stress can be detrimental to your health, because it releases more hormones that raise your blood sugar. 

To help alleviate some stress in your life, consider taking some time for yourself. I started scheduling my regular “me time” from my day-to-day activities of being a mother and working. Sometimes I walk for at least 20 minutes per day. I also get routine massages at least twice a month for an hour. I recently decided to try mediation. Additionally, I started taking rowing classes. (They’re really fun and give me a total body workout.) I never really understood the balance of taking time for myself. Now that I have incorporated it into my life, I see a tremendous difference and I’m at peace. 

Self-care also means setting boundaries in your life and the expectations other people try to impose on you. Work boundaries include taking 15-minute breaks, taking a lunch break instead of working through your lunch, logging off, and leaving work on time. This is called work-life balance. It’s necessary because this can also cause stress in your life if it’s not managed well. 

You also need to create boundaries with your family and friends. This includes being comfortable enough or able to say “no” when someone wants you to do something you don’t want to do or do something that will cause stress. Your “no” is your answer and doesn’t need any explanation. I had to learn these lessons of work-life balance and family/friend boundaries the hard way because I got burnt out. As a result, I had sleepless nights and additional stress, which spiked my blood sugar. Now that I have established my own boundaries, I am living better all around. 

Another self-care lesson I learned was the effects of getting a good night’s rest. I was burning the candle at both ends. I was just going 24/7 and not getting the proper rest my body needed. I was only getting about 4 to 5 hours of sleep every night. I found that I was extremely tired during the day and I wasn’t able to focus. Now, I get 6 to 8 hours of sleep every day. As a result, I am well-rested, and my mind can think more clearly. 

Self-care is a critical part of managing your diabetes, as it helps you to live a well-balanced life and reduces your stress and hormone levels. Start today to live for a better you! What can you alleviate in your life to reduce stress and live a better-balanced life? 


Learn, share, and connect with others on WebMD’s Type 2 Diabetes Facebook Support Group.




Photo Credit: Moyo Studio / E+ via Getty Images

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Robin Dorsey

Robin Dorsey

Diagnosed since 2006

A native of the Washington, DC, metro area, Robin Dorsey has lived with Type 2 diabetes for 15 years. She's the award-winning host of The Impact with Robin Dorsey, which airs on DCTV public access and will soon be on Fairfax Public Access (FPA) TV. The show profiles nonprofit organizations, community outreach efforts, extraordinary individuals and celebrity red carpet events. She founded her own publishing company, Dorsey Publishing, and is the co-author of A Mother & Daughter Memoirs of Love, Desire, Pain and Inspiration. She wrote the book along with her late mother, Renita T. Mock. Robin is an Ambassador for the American Diabetes Association (ADA). In addition, she has her MBA and provides subject matter expertise to the federal government. She has administered federal contracts for over 20 years. Her ultimate goal is to make a difference and to help “Stop Diabetes.” She is a proud mother to a handsome son, Darius, who is her biggest supporter and helps her maintain her diabetes.

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