A Diabetes Life is full of what you chose to focus on
You may not realize it, but the thoughts streaming through your head right this minute are determining your mood! Whether you are in a good mood or bad mood is all about the focus of your thoughts.
Try this with me. Think of your best holiday memory. Puppies, family, expectation, joy, surprise. Got it? Notice how you feel. Most likely, relaxed, a gentle smile on your face, a feeling of comfort and acceptance. Feels good, lighter – right? Sit in that for a while and enjoy! Now let’s test the other extreme. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, imagine the worst possible scenario. Turkey is burnt, Aunt/Uncle “Fill in the blank” is nagging at you, you are alone, you are in a crowded house of noisy relatives. You get the idea. Do you notice the tension in your shoulders? Did you suddenly become anxious, sad or trapped? You literally can feel the weight of the negative emotion. OK – drop that thought and go back to the puppies!!
It’s amazing how in the space of a few moments, just changing your thoughts impacts your reality both emotionally and physically. Well, that happens 24/7 whether you are paying attention or not. The ramblings in your head influence how you view and experience the world. Sort of scares me, because I can have some pretty crazy thoughts in there! So crazy that I can believe extreme opposites at the same time. I am good/bad. I trust and doubt the same person. I am deserving but feel unworthy. Yikes! That’s the bad news – your mind is always preparing for the best/worse scenario and therefore in fight or flight ready all the time. Exhausting!
The good news is that, just as in our little experiment, you can be intentional about what you focus on. You can acknowledge the painful thoughts based in fear. “Hi. Yes, I see you there but none for me today, thanks!” Then turn towards the thoughts that inspire you, challenge you, and warm your heart. This act of intention is a skill and takes some practice, so don’t beat yourself up if you are unable to turn off any thoughts you don’t want. That’s impossible. They will always be there. But the more you choose good thoughts and let go of the bad ones, the more you will notice the benefit.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. What better time to focus on the blessings in our lives. Yes, even the annoying ones. Choose to believe their behavior is about them, not you. Choose to intentionally enjoy the food at your table and the people around it. Choose to let small things go, so they don’t become big things. Choose to slow down for a moment and notice all that is happening around you and savor it. Choose to be thankful you have the medication you need and that you are still on this good earth to partake of God’s bounty.
And if your day is not a happy one, then choose to find a way to feel a bit better. Even if just a small bit. Find someone else who needs a hug. Be willing to receive a gift that is given. Accept the apology. Remember a time when you felt better and relish it. Create a plan to re-invent it. Take pleasure in the work you are doing while others are at home, your service matters. Create thoughts that are pleasing and focus on them. You decide. You choose. For me, just knowing that I can choose always makes me feel a bit better and that is something. Somedays that is just enough.
Enjoy your holiday! I am very Thankful for your support and interest!
And if you are a fellow diabetic, happy carb counting! Bolus and be well!