4 min read

Reaction vs Recognition

Reaction vs Recognition

Do you have any experience in your diabetes life, how your emotions impact your blood sugars?

I have many! :) I can say I'm pretty emotional and I think you might find yourself in this description as well in some situations happening in your life.

So let's talk about the difference between a reaction and recognition. What is the difference between the two and how can we do better regarding reactions and rather choose the recognition path instead of reaction path.

The problem of a reaction is that all reactions impact on our sugars. When we are emotional (I'm talking about negative emotions such as anger, frustration, impatience, nervousness, overthinking and so on), our body starts producing hormone cortisol, which decreases insulin secretion and increases glucose output from the liver into the blood.

This means that our emotional reactions are making our diabetes life and numbers much more complicated and less manageable and controllable. When our blood sugar increases when we are in such emotional stress, we will need more insulin to keep blood glucose in target ranges or bring it back into target ranges.

Is there anything we can do about this?

It IS!

We can start working on our reactions so that we slowly, day by day, react less to the triggers that put us into a reaction. What do I mean by this?

Human is designed to develop and grow constantly and this also goes for how we react in situations, that trigger negative emotions in us. How we react when we feel anxious, frustrated? Do we react with anger, worry, overthinking? Or are we able to stay calm and peaceful?

Whenever we react in a negative way, we are not supporting our body in terms of health. We are doing against our health and also against our diabetes. Our diabetes becomes harder to manage the more we spend time in emotional reactions. And this is something we should be focusing on more! If we want better control over our diabetes, this is a must.

So what is the trick?

The first step is to recognize, what are the triggers of negative emotions for us? When other people say something (or don't say), when others do something (or don't do), when others think or feel about something or someone in a certain way, all of these are potential triggers for us. And if we want to start working on our calmness, we first need to start seeing (recognizing), what are the challenges we have.

The second step is to release these challenges from the mind and the body, so that they are not blocking us anymore. For example, if our internal belief is that our diabetes is perfectly managed (but the actual numbers say this is not the case), we might get angry, frustrated, worried or even sad when the doctor tells us we need to do better.

If we do get angry, frustrated, worried or even sad, can we, from this state, improve our results? Highly unlikely. Because we are too occupied with thoughts like how this is not fair, how we are doing everything we can, how the doctor doesn't understand us, why is this happening to us and so on and so forth. Everyone can think of their own responses. All such negative responses, and I know this is very hard to hear, are not helping us improve our situation and our diabetes. They block any improvement and change, because we lock ourselves into belief that we are doing everything good already.

When we can openly accept a "bad" news and immediately start learning, researching and changing behaviors and beliefs that are creating non-optimal results, our results will also change.

So how to be better in handling "negative" situations? When a negative emotion appears and we recognize it, we have to work hard regarding our response, because we have to do exactly the opposite of what we usually would do. If frustration appears, recognize the trigger and change your frustration into gratitude, happiness, joy, love. Do everything you can to not react with negativity, since this will lock you and create even stronger blockage in you.

When I used to get angry, felt like I have to revenge, or was frustrated because things didn't go as planned, I would start doing things that I later regret. I started being loud, saying things to people that didn't deserve to hear it, I became totally cold and not approachable and so on. When I recognized this is very wrong thing to do and how much it's damaging me and people around me, I was able to start slowly changing it. When I recognized I want to revenge, I stopped myself and forced myself not to do it. Because it's wrong. Because it won't help anyone, not even me. It will only destroy me and the relationship with the person I want to revenge to. So I can not revenge, I need to do the opposite! I need to say something nice to this person. But I need to do this from the heart, I have to truly feel positively and be happy to not react in a negative way, even though that was my automatic response until now. By constantly practicing this, we can slowly get to the point, when we truly enjoy doing the opposite thing, and this means we recognized and changed the old and sick program into a new, healthy program.

Yes this is very hard. But with practice, anyone can do this. That's why we need to practice daily. In every situation, that triggers negative reaction inside. It will help us stay calm and calmness is the building block of health and great life result! Calmness will have a huge impact on our diabetes numbers in a positive way. Reactions as well, just they will impact the opposite way. Which one will you work for?