What Keeps You Going?

What inspires you? When things are hard with diabetes or any other part of your life, where do you get the strength to keep going? Or to try something new? I have found some ways, but they don’t always work.

What inspires me? Sometimes other people do. They overcome hard lives and make something beautiful out of their pain. Viktor Frankl was like that; he survived the Nazi concentration camps, helped others survive, and wrote some great books about it, including Man’s Search for Meaning.

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We all know of people who amaze us with their courage. They get through life with great disabilities, or without any money, or having lost their families or homes to violence or disaster.

Actually, that kind of courage is pretty common. In fact, most people have been through a lot of pain. We’re all kind of inspiring, even if we are not willing to admit it.

Some other people take on struggles that seem impossible, like Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King, Jr. did. We might not know anyone like that, but we can read about them and take strength.

Some groups and whole nations have to show amazing strength to keep going, but they do.

The thing about all those people is that they had reasons to keep going. They weren’t just doing it for themselves. They had some kind of purpose, some kind of goal, some belief in the value of their lives.

Do you have a purpose? Some people think they don’t. Some believe they have one but don’t know what it is. I think my purpose is mostly to give and receive love, to bring more love into the world. That’s kind of vague, but it does motivate me to get out of bed and do my stretches. You may have better ones for yourself.

One thing that anyone needs to keep going is faith. You at least have to believe that what you are doing does some good. You want to honestly believe that your self-management keeps you from getting worse. Hopefully you think you can get better and that there will be some benefits for you and for others from your recovery.

I’m stressing motivation here because I know living with diabetes (or any chronic illness) can get frustrating. On a blog by Joe Nelson, our reader Ephrenia commented:

We all reach a point where we feel like giving up because our bodies do something we don’t expect it to do. We get discouraged because our numbers don’t stay in range… I’m at that point now. I’m still eating close to right…but I quit losing weight months ago and this week I haven’t made it to the gym even though I know it’s best if I do.

I know the standard self-management ways of approaching Ephrenia’s problem. Try to figure out what’s going wrong and change it. Ask for help. Don’t try to be perfect. Set more realistic goals.

Those skills are important, but are they enough? They might be for ordinary day-to-day frustrations. But bigger challenges and more wonderful outcomes might need something else.

Maybe some people just naturally never quit. I’m not one of them, and I doubt if many people are. We need reasons to keep going. We need sources of support and inspiration.

What are these sources for you?

  • calgarydiabetic

    There is not other choice but death and that will come quite soon.

  • Redneck Angel

    As far as I can tell, my 103 yr. old Mother(adopted; I only mention this here because people usually remark about my “good” genes & for this comment I want you to know I do not share her’s, unfortunately…)doesn’t worry about what good she’s doing or if her life has any particular purpose other than to be lived. I occasionally ponder that when I wonder what I am supposed to be doing here & if I am doing it…, sometimes I think we can so caught up in introspection that we “doing” part! That said, I just try to live my life to the fullest w/o hurting anybody else’s. I set little goals for myself, usually on a yearly basis, of things I want to do for varying reasons. Then I try to enjoy myself while I am working towards them. There is ALWAYS some kind of reward at completion; material or perceived.
    Unfortunately “Cal”, it usually doesn’t come so soon; is the slow slide downhill on the way I am trying to beat.