LIVING WITH DIABETES: FACING THE FUTURE

As a mature adult, no doubt you’re considering what your future will be – when the kids leave home, when you achieve your career goals and have no further achievements to strive for, when you retire and change your lifestyle and possibly move from your home, your city and your state.
As a mature adult with diabetes, you have all these concerns, plus those that come with the fact you have this chronic disease with its possible complications.
All these considerations and concerns create stress. As a mature adult, you need to make plans now for how you will deal with these future stresses. With proper planning you can greatly reduce your risks for the debilitating stresses that come with growing older. Consider the alternative to growing older and you will have all the incentive in the world to work on your planning right now.
One of the biggest stresses in life is retirement. While it may relieve other stresses that come with working, more often than not it creates a whole new set of concerns.
A great deal of stress comes from not knowing what the future holds. Since you haven’t retired before, it’s difficult for you to know what lies ahead. This can be very stressful to anyone.
The key to handling the “unknowns” of retirement is to plan for that time. Make your own plan and you will remain in control over most of what will happen to you. The sooner you have created this retirement plan, the better off you will be and the more secure you will feel.
People, who work right up to the last minute without making any plans, and then jump into retirement, often do very poorly when their lives change abruptly. Change, in itself, is a major stress in anyone’s life.
Since you have just been diagnosed as having Type II diabetes, you have been handed a major stress. Your diabetes is going to be with you when you retire, so you need to plan, now, for how you’re going to control it – today, tomorrow, and two decades from now. Once your diabetes plan is established, you can go on to other retirement planning.

Here are some of the things you need to consider in the retirement plan you develop:
•      Think about what you will be doing with your time when you retire. Would you like to travel? Volunteer with a civic or service group? Dust off those tools and get your workshop back in operation? Start a hobby or activity you just haven’t had time to do in the past?
•      Think about where the funds are going to come from and how much you’ll have to spend during your retirement years. If retirement is a number of years away, you may have time to set aside funds to make your life more comfortable and pleasurable in the future.
•     Think about where and how you’ll be living. Are you planning to move to a smaller house or a more pleasant climate?
If you have problems working out your retirement plan, seek professional help. Talk to your physician about this or to your diabetes educator. A psychological counselor can also be a great help if you have difficulty handling the feelings you have about the future.
Accentuate the Positive
Life has its ups and downs. How you react to these swings is vitally important. If you can maintain a positive attitude toward life and do positive things about your life, you’ll be able to cope with the downs and enjoy the ups to the fullest.
*11/210/5*

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