Where’s the line?

I want to follow up a bit on my January dLife Viewpoints column.  I wrote about being too hard on myself, which is something I think many of us can say, and all of us have probably heard.

I’ve heard it from so many people in so many different places around so many different circumstances.

“Scott – stuff happens, you’re being too hard on yourself”, or “it’s not your fault, quit being so hard on yourself”, and “don’t be so hard on yourself, we can’t get it right all the time”.

So I’ve been thinking about this for a while.  It is true, and not.  I recognize that in many places I need to love myself more, and I’m often reminded of that when reading blogs like “Aiming for Grace“, “Amazing Grace“, and “Diabetes Stories“, just to name a few.  Those special bloggers often have a real knack for tapping into the essence of honoring and respecting the inner need for compassion.

But isn’t there also a place for a sort of “tough love”?  I mean, I could compassionately love myself right into poor(er) diabetes management couldn’t I?

I personally feel a lot of conflict between the need to be kind of tough on myself, in a healthy way, versus beating myself up and feeling bad in an unhealthy way.  It is hard to find the balance between the two!  And maybe that line is not always in the same place?  I suppose there are times when you need to be a little more strict, and times when you need to be a little more compassionate.  There is a lot to this little internal dialogue…

It’s kind of like insulin in that regard, yes?  Now all I need is a meter that can help me know when and how much I need!

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6 thoughts on “Where’s the line?

  1. I think there’s a difference between needed to love yourself more and being a realist. If I know I’ve been slacking on my management, I don’t think that feeling sorry or sympathetic is the right attitude. It might work in moments to possibly diagnosing a potentially deeper problem, but I find that I don’t have enough time to dwell on the past.
    Then again, I’m often too hard on myself on most issues too. I suppose I still have a lot to learn.

  2. Scott,
    I like what Zazzy said. I think that’s the key. We can set goals, but we don’t have to beat ourselves up if we don’t get to them right away.
    It’s easier said than done, I think. Love yourself for the things that you are doing to make a difference, and for the things that aren’t–set the goals and take small steps.

  3. Its a fine line between not being too hard on ourselves and destroying any semblance of effective glycemic management; and healthcare providers and caregivers ponder why the incidence of depression and the big D is so high? Their solution: “more education is the answer!” … obviously that it not an effective answer, what might be effective is psychological care and lessons for endos!

  4. I know what you mean Scott. If you look at the mistake that I made yesterday with Tristan’s bolus….. tough love or compassion? I was mad at myself but honestly, what would beating myself up about have accomplished? Nothing.
    I think that it’s important that we learn from our mistake or recognize that we shouldn’t or should have done something and then make a conscious effort to do better next time. That’s all we can do. Try and better ourselves. But nobody’s perfect and beating yourself up will not help…. I believe that it will only discourage you.

  5. I think I recently *got* this – not that it solved all my problems for me, but it made sense in a way it hasn’t before. I don’t think it was anything I hadn’t heard before, either, just heard it right this time.
    Accept yourself. Accept that you’re not perfect, love yourself anyway.
    Then, expect more of yourself. You have goals, focus on one (like in way back wednesday!) and reward yourself. Build on success instead of beating yourself up for perceived failure.
    At least, that’s where I’m trying to be these days. 🙂

  6. Thanks for sharing! I really know where you’re coming from here. I struggle with the same thing all the time. Usually I just gently swing back and forth, for a few months or years one way, and then the other way