Self care and Type 1 Diabetes go hand in hand for so many reasons. People with Type 1 on average make 160 more decisions on a daily basis then a non - diabetic. That is a tonne of decisions! This is often followed by fatigue and a lot of it due to the nature of the decisions being made but also because often your blood sugar levels are constantly fluctuating too. As a Type 1 myself I know the impact this has on my mood, energy levels and overall wellbeing.
So what is Self Care?
Self-care is anything you do to take care of yourself so you can stay physically, mentally, and emotionally well. Its benefits are better physical, mental, and emotional health and well-being. Research suggests self-care promotes positive health outcomes, such as fostering resilience, living longer, and becoming better equipped to manage stress.
Self care is so critically important for Type 1 Diabetics because of the amount of extra stress, fatigue, decisions and ups and downs with blood sugar levels. Two of the most important ones are movement and nutrition. This is because they are both so critical for maintaining healthy blood sugars and feeling your best! But there are lots of other options that can be added in too. Here are some of my go to options for self care and Type 1 Diabetes below:
Take a long hot bath
Write down 10 things you are grateful for today
Deep breathe / Meditate ( I love the app Headspace)
Light your favourite candle
Cook a nice meal
Try a new hobby
Watch a movie
Practice some yoga
Call a friend you haven't in a while and have a chat
Do a digital detox off social media
Practice positive self affirmations
Keep an eye on your blood sugars and adjust where necessary
Eat a meal rich in vegetables
Be present in the moment
Spend time in nature - I love long walks through the bush
Really a self care practice can be anything that brings you personal joy & satisfaction! It doesn't have to be big or small, it just has to be something that is part of your everyday / weekly routine that is easy to incorporate.
Self care can fall into the below categories:
Emotional self-care, such as self-talk, weekly bubble baths, saying “no” to things that cause unnecessary stress, giving yourself permission to take a pause, or setting up a weekly coffee date with a friend
Physical self-care, such as prioritising sleep, adopting an exercise routine you can stick with, choosing healthy and nourishing foods over highly processed ones
Spiritual self-care, such as attending a religious service, spending time in nature, meditating, incorporating regular acts of kindness into your day, or keeping a gratitude journal
These can all have such a profound impact on your life and can enhance your relationship with your diabetes by creating more space to be fully able to look after yourself and your diabetes. What self care rituals can you incorporate into your daily routine? I would love to know!