The Power of Small, Simple Steps

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SPLENDA® Naturals. The opinions and text are all mine.

I can be a little stubborn sometimes. I believe being stubborn can be a helpful attribute – especially for diabetes management and trying to stay healthy.

When diabetes throws me a curve ball, it’s up to me to recalibrate my expectations and get back on track. Being stubborn is useful in those cases, but tends to undermine my efforts in other ways.

Simple steps

Too often, I try to change too much at one time or try to make huge changes quickly. I make the mistake of thinking I can just “stubborn” my way through changes and I don’t take a strategic approach. But I’m learning to appreciate the power of simple, consistent steps thanks in large part to noticing SPLENDA® Naturals and how they always highlight the power of small, consistent steps in such an empowering way.

Earlier this summer I shared that I was working with them on a few of the small steps of my own that I wanted to work on. Some of those steps included enjoying smoothies in the morning and drinking more water. Or maybe trying to add some coffee or tea with SPLENDA® Naturals instead of sugar to satisfy my urge for sweetness without adding calories or carbs and drinking less Diet Coke during the day.

My daughter often enjoys iced coffee, and I decided to try some of that too (also sweetened with SPLENDA® Naturals) as an occasional drink. You know what? I really like it and have started switching that into my beverage mix through the week, too.

I started many mornings with a smoothie, which was rich, tasty, and satisfied my sweet tooth yet didn’t have extra carbs or calories because I used SPLENDA® Naturals instead of other sweeteners. I felt satisfied and snacked less through the late mornings, which was a nice bonus.

That’s it. I didn’t set up big goals or giant behavior changes. I’ve made that mistake before and failed too many times. The plan here is small steps that are easy to do. In the past three months, I have made a lot of small steps. I haven’t been perfect, but I’ve made progress. Much more progress than without small steps.

I’m also working with a coach who’s teaching me to celebrate my wins, no matter how small. Learning to change the energy around my efforts is another important aspect of positive change which has made a big difference.

A sudden realization

One morning in September I realized something huge! It dawned on me that through the small steps above (drinking more water, coffee & tea), I was drinking less Diet Coke at work. How much less? About half as much!


Note – I did not take the approach of limiting my Diet Coke consumption. Instead, I started the small by drinking more water, coffee & tea. I also didn’t attach any numbers or quantities here. I drank those things first and whenever it crossed my mind, then I enjoyed my Diet Coke with no regrets.

It didn’t hit me that my Diet Coke consumption was cut in half until I realized my regular supply run was lasting twice as long!

Don’t wait – just start

One of the biggest things I learned working with SPLENDA® Naturals on this campaign is the importance of not waiting to start something. For example, it’s common for me to come up with a plan, but not start anything until Monday.

Monday’s are great days to start, right? Yeah, of course.

But you know what other days are good days to start? ANY DAY! I don’t have to wait for Monday to start or to get back on track! Waiting for Mondays is just a fancy way to procrastinate for me.

So I stopped waiting for Monday. As soon as I decided on a change or behavior I wanted to start, I jumped right in no matter what day of the week it is. Likewise, and maybe more importantly, when I fell off the horse I didn’t beat myself up or procrastinate by waiting for a clean, fresh start. I pulled myself back together and started again no matter what day of the week it was.

That behavior change is huge all by itself, and I appreciate this SPLENDA® Naturals campaign for helping me see that.

Have I noticed anything else?

Yep, you bet. My thinking feels clearer and I seem to have more overall energy. I also feel empowered by learning a new skill – leveraging the power of small steps.

I’m also proud of myself for getting back on track so quickly whenever I found myself struggling, and that’s a big win.

How about you? Have any simple steps or small changes lead to big improvements in your life?


This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Splenda. The opinions and text are all mine. Comments submitted may be displayed on other websites owned by the sponsoring brand.

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Scott K. Johnson

Patient voice, speaker, writer, advocate, and Senior Community Manager at Blue Circle Health. Living life with diabetes and telling my story. All opinions expressed are my own and do not necessarily represent my employer’s position. Read more…

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