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Three ways to stay focused on your diabetes goals

Each and every year many of us set goals, from exercising more to stopping smoking, that are aimed at improving a part of our lives. However, we often abandon those goals by the later part of the year for a myriad of reasons. Setting personal goals in diabetes management is no different, except, the stakes are usually much higher.

In honor of not ditching my goals for the year, I have prepared a list of a few ways I stay on track with my goal setting.

Diabetes goals: Staying on track

1. Use building blocks. Setting goals for diabetes management is just as important as achieving them, which is why laying the ground work for success is crucial. The foundation created at the beginning motivates change when frustration, challenges and the desire to quit rear their ugly heads.

2. Achieve big goals with small steps. Dream big. Set giant goals. There is no problem with establishing major goals, but, when tackled head-on, they can seem daunting. Break down the bigger goal into smaller steps that are easier to achieve. For example, if your goal is to lower your A1c from 10% to 7%, the 3% gap may seem like a major task. Instead, focus on 1% increments on a semi-annual basis -- using steps to get to the 3% goal.

3. Be fluid. Goals, as anything else in life, require a certain amount of flexibility and understanding of the unexpected. I like to call it the 'life happens' factor. Because anything can happen to derail you from your goals, a certain fluidity is needed to get back on track without losing a step.

Staying flexible with my 2012 goals

The best part about setting goals? You can change them, update them and add new ones at any time. This year I have a personal goal to run a 10k race. I was never a runner, so I was essentially starting form scratch. I started by running a quarter mile, then walking a quarter mile three times a week until I was comfortable and then added an eighth of a mile.

Three months into my training I could run 4 miles without stopping -- a great achievement. Unfortunately, I tore the meniscus in my left knee about three weeks ago and I had to put everything on hiatus until I healed. I haven't quit on my goal and as soon as I can, I will be back at it.

I believe If I can do it, then so can everyone else. Why not go out there and improve that aspect of your diabetes management you've been thinking about.

About Ronnie Gregory

Ronnie Gregory is a blogger and avid health activist. He was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in his teens and has dedicated his life to helping others who are living with this devastating disease.

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