Joy is strength. – Mother Teresa
Today is the 1st day of spring! The sun, warmer weather, and flowers in bloom definitely sparks joy for us. On the topic of “sparking joy”, @AFreshPOVforYOU had the opportunity to moderate the #DSMA Twitter Chat last Wednesday 3/13/19. We had a great discussion that delved into finding joy in life, as well as in diabetes education. (We’d like to hear your thoughts too! If you’re willing to share, click the link to a survey here or at the end of this blog).
This topic of sparking or finding joy, was inspired by @MarieKondo and her Netflix show about her KonMari method. Are you familiar with her and her wildly popular method of organizing, the KonMari method? Basically, it consists of gathering together one’s belongings, one category at a time, and then keeping only those things that “spark joy”. If they don’t spark joy, then you thank them, and let go of them. (The KonMari method also inspired us to get an early start on spring cleaning!) Maybe you’re not into organizing, that’s okay. But this concept of what sparks joy…it got us thinking about how we could apply it to diabetes and explore how diabetes education may spark joy.
During the chat, conversation began with what sparks joy for people in their own life, and then turned to when engaging with the diabetes online community (DOC). We asked participants to summarize in one word their experience with the DOC. Here are some of the words people shared: unifying, heartening, inspiring, awesome, knowledge, enlightening, meaningful, village and yes, joyful!
So how can those same words be used to describe engaging diabetes education services?
We discussed the concept of co-design and wanted to learn if people with diabetes designed a diabetes education program or service, what would they include and how would they design it? And ideally, what would spark joy for them when participating in a service or program? We heard some really interesting ideas that resonated with the solutions focused approach we are incorporating in our services.
Here are some of the thoughts and suggestions:
- Diabetes is more about the person, than the numbers and gadgets!
- Experienced people with diabetes (PWD) teaching newbies
- Personalized, person centered, there is no “right way” or “one way” to do anything. Let people choose from a variety of options.
- Several mentioned meeting people where they are, focusing on strengths, and not worrying about getting “straight A’s”, but realizing everyone is unique
- Use of technology
- Focus on emotional health and goal setting
- PWD telling their stories
- Stronger connection to others with diabetes, Interacting with others who have diabetes
- Be community-based
- Incorporate personality questions
- We were really inspired by the amazing @KellyRawlings who thought that “joy” should be one of the AADE7 self-care behaviors for managing diabetes!
We observed an overwhelming commonality of people wanting or needing to connect more with other PWD as they are learning about living with diabetes. As we closed out the chat, we challenged participants to do something every day that sparks joy in life! So today, that is our challenge to you too. Do something for yourself, or for others that sparks joy! And if it helps you, track your experiences and feelings in a gratitude journal.
Thank you to @DiabetesSocMed and Cherise for allowing us to moderate the chat and engage in a fast and fun chat, it really sparked joy for us!
Would you like to help us learn more about what would make an ideal diabetes education experience?
At A Fresh POV for you, our goal is to co-design innovative diabetes education services. If you or someone you know has type 2 diabetes or prediabetes and would be interested in participating in a focus group about co-designing education, please complete this survey which will take less than 5 minutes.
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