Cancer, Covid & Country-Wide Chaos – Wisdom From My Mom

It’s been a while since I’ve posted on this blog. Much like the rest of the world, I’ve been processing MANY fluctuating emotions, changes, personal and professional evolutions and uncertainties. Besides being in the process of creating the fourth annual Diabetes Empowerment Summit online event, diabetes has not been on my mind much at all.

I sent this email to my beloved email community of over 10K human beings a couple weeks back that caused some to leave, and some to stand even stronger in our community led by love, empathy, compassion, inclusivity, and equality for all. Feel free to read it HERE if you haven’t already.

One thing that has remained constant for me throughout the upheavals of life as of late is the love, respect, honor and reverence I have for my perfect-for-me mom. She is 69 years old, has lived through A LOT, and somehow always maintains a deep level of calm and centeredness, so I wanted to share her latest writing here for anyone who might need some “mom” wisdom.

The below was written by my mom, Gayle Shapiro, a few weeks back, and it is worth a read:

2020 has brought overwhelming circumstances to all of us. For me, it’s been represented by several “c” words – cancer, covid, and most recently, countrywide chaos resulting from the tragically disturbing murder of George Floyd.

The visual of that horror seen by everyone was the tipping point – for people who have always cared about social justice and racism, as well as many others who might not have realized or understood or lived in denial of the tremendous unfair treatment of people of color that has been pervasive in our society for so long.

One factor that made this incident so alarming is the fact that the three other officers did not do anything to intervene to stop George Floyd from being murdered by their fellow officer. The scenes of the violent rioting this week brought back memories for me of the race riots which took place in Philadelphia in 1964.

What really surprised me is the fact that I witnessed first-hand that violent action on the street where I lived at that time, and somehow my brain repressed most of the memory of it. I hadn’t thought about it in many years; I had a vague recollection that it happened, but the details were blocked out.

I was 13 years old living on a busy commercial street in North Philadelphia. All of the properties on my block were stores owned by white merchants, and people of many races and nationalities lived in the neighborhood. My father had a shoe repair business, and we lived in the same building upstairs from the shop. When I think back on this, I think at the age of 13 I should have been aware of the social and racial disparities, but I really don’t have any memory of that. I guess things are so different today because at that time, as young kids we did not really get involved in the news of the day, news was not a 24/7 flow, and of course, social media did not exist to constantly bombard us with images and information about what was going on.

It was a hot day in late August and my parents had taken me for a day trip to Atlantic City. When we approached our street returning home that night, we saw the rioting happening on our block. Large noisy crowds were smashing windows of most of the shops and we could not go to our home. I do recall that at that moment, I was probably more afraid than at any other time in my life, and I assume my brain just blocked out the rest because the trauma was too scary to face. We drove to my married sister’s house a few blocks away from the chaotic activity and spent the night there.

This week I got an email from an old friend who lived on that street; we were best friends from age 4. She lives in Florida now and we stay in touch  occasionally. She wrote to me to share her memories of that time, and to my surprise she reminded me that she was with me and my parents that day, and I didn’t even remember that she was with us! She filled in some of the details that she remembered, including the fact that she had been so afraid for her father who had stayed there to defend his furniture store, and had terrible nightmares for a long time afterwards. When we returned home the next day, we found that both my father’s and her father’s store windows had been the only ones on the block that were not damaged.

We moved out of that neighborhood shortly after that although my father kept the store open for a good while longer, until one day someone came in with a knife and tried to rob him. Somehow, he struggled and got the knife away from the guy who then fled. That was the end of the business on Lehigh Avenue. I still have that knife to this day.

Seeing this all happening now, almost 60 years later, is extremely distressing. Still the same inequality, prejudice, and discrimination exist and are even more prevalent today. My sincere desire is that the overwhelming reaction and protests of so many people across the entire nation and around the world is a sign of hope that things can and will change.

In keeping with my usual mindset of positivity, which seems to get harder and harder to maintain, I’ll share my belief that the large crowds of protesters that are gathering in so many places will provide valuable information to the ongoing research into covid-19. Social distancing has not been observed, and many of the participants in these demonstrations are not wearing masks. It will be of great interest to learn whether these mass gatherings will result in outbreaks of the virus in those groups. This could be an important guidance to those studying the evolution and spread of the virus and to the continuation of strategies and plans to develop some sense of a more settled way of life going forward.

Finally, I’ve decided to concentrate on some other positive “c” words that help me to stay optimistic.

  • First is confidence – confidence that my strength and attitude (and chemotherapy!) will continue to heal my body, and I have had the results so far to keep me enthusiastically expecting more of the same.
  • Next is calm curiosity about the covid crisis. I do all that I can to stay safe as a member of the highest risk group, but I regard the situation as a learning experience and ongoing science experiment that affects the entire world. No amount of worrying on my part will do anything about it, so I’ll quote the great Deepak Chopra who says “acceptance leads to insight and peace”. So I will follow that wise advice and accept with grace that which I can’t control.

Regarding the ongoing civil unrest, I can only depend on human compassion and concern to address the issues that need to be resolved. Those sensitivities, when motivated by passion and empathy, and advanced and organized by masses, lead to progress. It’s going to be a long and uncomfortable process; the systemic injustice and brutality that has been in place for hundreds of years will not change overnight, or within weeks or months.

I’m encouraged by witnessing the outpouring of outrage and involvement by young people. They are the true hope for a future that consists of equality, inclusivity, respect, and love for all human beings by all human beings.

Quite a lofty goal, and the fact that so many people deny or can’t even comprehend the existence of white privilege is a major obstacle in reaching that goal.

Also, all of us have implicit bias, even though we may not realize it or even understand what it is. Let’s all take action to be a part of manifesting the changes that are so desperately needed. In the interest of that objective, I have listed below some resources that will educate as well as provide opportunities for direct personal engagement with organizations that are working towards a better future for all of us. Some of the things we can all do:

  • SPEAK UP! Talk to people about the issues There are so many that are related – racism, police brutality and corruption, health care and education inequality, employment discrimination, and more. Endure the discomfort and hear – really listen with an open mind – other people’s stories. Especially communicate with your children about treating people with compassion and fairness.
  • Contact your elected officials! Communicate your desire/demand for change in policies.
  • LEARN & SHARE! Many of the resources listed below provide pertinent educational materials for both adults and children – check out article, blogs,
    videos, and movies.
  • Donate, volunteer, share resources with others. Volunteer with an organization that feeds people. People shouldn’t be suffering from hunger in our country, our communities. HELP THEM!
  • VOTE! Learn what candidates really stand for and vote accordingly in all elections, not just the major ones! The change must be at all levels.

Resource Links:

White Privilege Explained

Understanding Implicit Bias

Books, films, podcasts

Are your unconscious focuses leading you to feel unnecessary pain every day? Change your focus!


Consciously and intentionally choosing what you focus on = consciously and intentionally choosing the quality of your life!

There are 3 main focuses we are always in control of in our lives that undoubtedly determine our experience of life – one focus causes pain and fear while the other causes joy, love, gratitude and empowerment.

These 3 focuses apply to all areas of life, and particularly the relationships we have with our mind, body, spirit wellness and the choices we make consistently.

☑️ Focus #1: What you have versus what you don’t have

☑️ Focus #2: What you can control versus what you can’t control

☑️ Focus #3: Whether you live (mentally/spiritually) in the past, the future, or in the present

Which of each of these focuses do you (likely unconsciously) default to in your day to day experiences of life?

Can you see how one focus causes a person to feel fear and pain, and the other focus causes a person to feel joy and empowerment?

The more you remain conscious and aware of your power to choose in every situation (minute to minute) and the more you consciously and intentionally choose gratitude for what you have versus anger for what you don’t, gratitude for what you can control (your own choices) and waste no energy on what you can’t control (everything in the world BUT your own choices), and the more you keep your thoughts in the present (which is all we ever truly have) versus the past (which you can’t change) or the future (which you can’t predict), the more you are consistently practicing mindfulness, self-care, and self-love as a default mindset habit! 🙏🙌

☑️ If you have access to insulin/medication yet repeatedly focus on being angry for needing it in the first place, you will feel unnecessary pain.

☑️ If you have diabetes/any other health challenge and are constantly fighting the reality of it by defaulting to anger and self-pity for your reality, you will feel unnecessary pain.

☑️ If you constantly relive past events or imagine unknown future events and allow that to dictate your feelings daily, you are creating unnecessary pain.

Changing your focus means learning ACCEPTANCE through consciously and intentionally practicing gratitude & self-love, and remaining present more often than not – AKA practicing mindfulness. All of these things are PRACTICES and require compassionate love and effort. These practices will change ALL aspects of your life for the better in ways you may not even be able to imagine just yet – both for you and those you love and influence.

Being conscious and aware of these focuses and the essential role you play in choosing them are foundational personal development MUSTS!

You can choose to stay where you are, or you can choose to change your focus and practices and move forward. The choice is always yours.

In the Love Yourself to Health monthly coaching membership group, we focus on cultivating the sustainable, life-altering practices of self-love every single day, with built in accountability, support, guidance, and so much more. We welcome you to join our tribe – our self-love family – and see how your life changes in just one month. It’s only one dollar to join – the choice to love yourself is always squarely in your hands.


What is Self-care? Perspective Matters!

How are you intentionally practicing self-love via self-care today?🤔 Let me know in the comments!

Sometimes we get caught up in an all-or-nothing mindset when it comes to self-care practices. Either I do EVERYTHING exactly right or I do nothing at all! Sometimes we are unwilling to embrace the fact that every act of self-care, no matter how seemingly small, MATTERS IMMENSELY. 🙌

So, when I ask you how you’re intentionally practicing self-care, I’m simply reminding you that hydrating your body is self-care. Eating vegetables and fruits (and other nutrient dense foods) is self-care. Journaling is self-care. Taking conscious, intentional deep breaths for any amount of time is self-care. Meditating is self-care. Spending any amount of time in nature just BEING is self-care. 🍉🥑💧

Taking a walk is self-care. Laying by the pool is self-care. Reading a book you enjoy is self-care. Taking a bath is self-care. Drinking water is self-care. Gratitude stacking is self-care. 🏊‍♀️🛁📚

The list of small, simple, meaningful practices goes on and on. The goal is to work toward changing your perspective to consciously and intentionally framing ALL of these actions under the category of self-care, which then translates into allowing you to feel successful in your self-care practices more often, which leads to you wanting to do more, and so on in an upward self-care spiral. 😊

They don’t all need to be accomplished in any particular time frame for any one of them to deeply nurture and heal your mind, body, spirit wellness! 💫

WHY is this so incredibly important? 🤔

Throughout my own personal transformation(s) and bearing witness to wellness transformations of thousands of others who achieved things they previously believed unattainable for themselves in all areas of life, I’ve learned one major lesson that always rings true:

☑️The amount of health, vibrancy, energy, vitality, joy, happiness – overall total wellness that you feel every day – IS DIRECTLY PROPORTIONAL TO the amount of self-love and self-care you are willing to practice day to day.

That is why changing our perspectives on what self-care is (how we define/frame it) is so important (and why I aim to drive that point home continuously.) That is WHY redefining self-care is SO CRUCIAL to changing one’s habits, beliefs, and overall lifestyle choices in a sustainable way. 🙌

That is why I’m so intent on guiding you to allow yourself to feel successful EVERY SINGLE TIME you drink water, read a book, appreciate nature, or thousands of other seemingly mundane or unimportant actions that are actually massively celebration-worthy practices of self-care. 🎆🎇🎉

If There Was A Simple Way To Feel Good More Often That Took 30 Seconds, Would You DO IT?

Self-love = Mindfulness = Presence = FEELING GOOD MORE OFTEN: Adjust Your Perspective

Self-love, mindfulness and presence are interchangeable words and practices in my life and as a result in my teachings. Regardless of which word I choose to use, they all mean the same things and produce the same life-changing results when put into practice:

Massively increased feelings of improved mental, physical and spiritual health, gratitude, and joy.

When I think about practicing mindfulness, the first thing I think of is being fully present in the current moment, without any judgment towards myself or others or towards the past or future. My ability to enter this state is facilitated by deep breathing and the intentional expression of gratitude for all that I do have and can do.

Thirty short seconds of choosing to be in this state is like hitting the re-set button on your mind, body, spirit connection to self and others, and charging back up with the energy of love. It’s like closing out all the open tabs in your mind’s browser and opening up ONE new one once you’re ready to move forward.

Choose to Recharge

Consciously practicing mindfulness is so crucial to all areas of our wellness because of the pace at which most of us are living today and the expectations we place upon ourselves to “be productive.” Go, go, go. Produce, produce, produce. Check everything off the to-do list.

We’re so wrapped up in DOING, and when we feel we haven’t done enough, that elicits feelings of inadequacy, not-enough-ness, stress, guilt, shame. All of those words are just code for living in fear – for making our decisions from a place of fear versus love which almost always ends up in an undesirable outcome.

The key to cultivating the sustainable good feelings that we want is a solid, non-negotiable daily TO BE practice – allowing ourselves to say each and every day “now is the time I’ve set aside to simply BE.” This is practicing self-love.

Prioritize Feeling Good on Your To-Do List

If you’re just getting started, I recommend setting two repeating calendar reminders each day to re-set your connection to feeling gratitude with thirty seconds of mindfulness – thirty seconds of BEING. This will also work wonders for more advanced self-love practitioners!

Deep breathing, expressing gratitude and appreciation for all that you are – gratitude for your heart beating, your lungs breathing, your feet carrying you through life, your hands allowing you to feel, and on and on and on without you ever having to ask your body to do any of it – you are truly magical if you MAKE THE TIME and allow yourself to recognize it!

If you want to see and feel even better after this refreshing mindfulness practice, set an intention for the outcome you desire for whatever task/situation/conversation/etc. you are heading into next. The results will likely amaze you. You will feel like you are in a world of “coincidences” but really you are simply flowing along with the current of the Universe by being conscious and intentional about what you want.

Don’t Take My Word for It

Don’t take my word for this – please try this out for yourself! I want you to FEEL GOOD, and I know with 100% certainty that practicing mindfulness for thirty seconds a couple of times each day will make you feel good in those moments – undoubtedly better than if you choose not to.

Dr. Wayne Dyer describes our connection to the Universe/Goddess/God/Gaia/MotherNature/InfiniteIntelligence/DivineSpirit/WhateverYouThinkIsOutThere as always present and working in our favor, however, it is up to us to keep the connection clear, and I wholeheartedly agree.

The only way to keep the connection clear is by practicing mindfulness, self-love, presence – by tapping into that energetic current as often as you are willing.

The more you tap in, the easier it is to live in a more consistently connected and present state. When you are in that state, you are calm and in tune with the energy of the Universe. You feel more supported and grounded versus frustrated and anxious.

Your Mindfulness Options are Limitless

The ways we can tap into that source current to keep our mindful, present, conscious, intentional energy going include but are in no way limited to: meditation, journaling, deep breathing, gratitude stacking, mantras, praying, affirmations, setting intentions, grounding/Earthing/communing with nature, any kind of creative expression such as drawing, writing, painting, knitting, cooking, building, sculpting, singing, dancing, playing instruments, designing, choreographing, yoga, and SO MANY MORE.

EVERY SINGLE DECISION YOU MAKE about your health (diabetes management included) will be influenced positively by prioritizing practicing mindfulness each day simply because you are changing your awareness.

One Final Thought

I’m in no way saying that practicing mindfulness is going to solve all of your challenges, that you will never feel negative emotions again, or that it is in any way wrong to feel negative emotions. What I am saying is that by consciously and intentionally making any sort of daily mindfulness practice part of your life, your challenges and negative emotions will automatically feel less heavy. It is also highly likely that the amount of time you spend in negative emotional states will get shorter and shorter over time the more you are willing to practice mindfulness in some way each day.

You deserve to feel good more often, and you heavily influence whether or not that happens by taking control of your daily priorities and practices.

The Messy Middle

What is your intention for this week?

Setting one or more very specific intentions each week (personally I do it every day because I’ve witnessed the enormous positive effects it has on my life) truly does increase our awareness of our desired outcomes which in turn aims us much more truly in the direction of said outcomes. Shoot for the moon, land among the stars…

Along your journey, please join me in remembering this as often as needed: progress is NEVER linear. One of my mentors says “there are no straight lines in nature, and yet nature always finds a way.”

Ebbs and flows. Steps forward and backward. Occasional giant leaps but mostly meaningful baby steps (and stumbles). There are no straight lines. It is when we convince ourselves that perfection is a real, attainable goal that we truly experience the most (self-inflicted) pain.

You are exactly where you are supposed to be right now.

And, if you feel like you aren’t where you “should” be (not a fan of the word “should” at all, by the way since should is, in itself, a generally critical self-judgement) rest in the awareness that you have all the tools you need to take the next small step towards wherever you want to go within you right now – you always have and you always will. The small, consistent steps are really the ones that lead us to those big, sometimes seemingly insurmountable goals throughout our lives.

Take the next small step. Interrupt the thought process every time you find yourself thinking about the falseness of perfection and instead find joy and learn from all the small steps we all GET TO take to get wherever it is we are aiming to go.

Join me with love and gratitude in the messy middle and trust the process – the beautiful, messy, lovely, ugly, joyful, painful, incredibly awesome process of personal growth – mind, body, and spirit.

If it doesn’t challenge you and take you outside your comfort zone, it won’t yield the results you’re after. I’ve found that meaningful, sustainable growth generally doesn’t happen without overwhelm and growing pains, however, I’ve also found the expressing intense gratitude on a very regular basis massively alleviates those pesky growing pains.

So keep going, because you deserve to explore your dreams, and the world needs as much love as it can get.

P.S. This is me writing to myself to process my emotions – I hope it serves you, too.

Registration for the Diabetes Empowerment Summit is Now OPEN!

First things first, know that I’m sending you LOTS of love and healing energy towards creating more love and joy in your health and day to day life, now and always!


As you can see from my caps lock – I’m INCREDIBLY excited to finally announce that, after months of preparation, registration for the 2019 Diabetes Empowerment Summit is OPEN!!!

What is the Diabetes Empowerment Summit?

This is our third online event, and the positive feedback we received from our 9+ thousand attendees over the past couple of years has been mind-blowing.

An online summit is like attending a diabetes conference that has some of the most high caliber speakers out there, WITHOUT having to pay for conference fees, travel costs, taking time off work, etc. AND getting to pick and choose which presentations are most appealing to you and watching them from the comfort of your own home.

All the presenters share their best tools, stories, practices, experiences and more on HOW they cultivate and create an empowered mindset with diabetes, HOW they build confidence in their day to day choices living with diabetes, and also what they teach their patients/clients/readers/followers in the same regard!

Why am I (and all the presenters and partners) so passionate about this?

The reality of traditional healthcare when it comes to living with all types of diabetes is that the mental and emotional sides of life with chronic disease are almost NEVER addressed EVEN THOUGH without understanding those aspects of our health care we are left feeling unequipped to handle the demands of day to day life with chronic disease and feel alone and ignored.

Further, resources covering HOW to cultivate the habits and practices that allow us not only to build a strong, solid emotional foundation to build the rest of our lives on, but those same tools that we need to lean on when we are experiencing difficult times/burnout, are not offered at the doctor’s office even if we ask for them.

Without these CRUCIAL tools, we are left to figure this all out on our own.

I know because that was my journey with diabetes for so many years. Clinical depression, eating disorder, obesity, shame, guilt, anger, self-pity. That was my everyday experience and mindset for more than 8 years.

That is why I am so passionate about creating this resource that is free for everyone to experience.

Because it is a tool that I wish I had when I was struggling, and I want to help bridge the gap between traditional healthcare and the emotional tools we all need but are not given at the doctor’s office.

We need your help!

We are SO grateful to be partnering with many amazing non-profit organizations and partners who are sharing this resource with their networks because they believe in the value it adds to the community.

I believe that the power of collaboration and community are key to helping as many people as possible get the tools they need to live happier and healthier lives through cultivating the practices of self-love, self-care and self-worth.

In that light, we are asking that you share this valuable resource with your network – your friends, family, healthcare team, social media groups, and anyone who could use this information.

We can only help people if they KNOW this resource exists!

Share via email, social media, word of mouth. If you need anything from us to help you with ease of sharing, comment below and let us know!

The link to register for free and that you can share AND you get some pretty awesome bonuses just for registering!

Share the link, feel free to use my words to describe the event – anything you need.

Register now, mark your calendars for May 1st when the summit begins, then share, share, share!

As always, let’s consciously choose to be more loving this week, both towards ourselves and those around us, because YOU deserve it, and the world needs as much LOVE as it can get!

How to Practice Using Glucagon for Hypoglycemic (Low Blood Sugar) Emergencies

Have you ever practiced using glucagon either by yourself or with someone else?


Taking a few minutes to practice using an expired glucagon kit with a friend of loved one that you live or travel with can be an incredibly powerful way to feel more prepared in an emergency situation.

When I was a teenager I needed to have glucagon used on me twice, and I’m forever grateful to my mom and family for acting quickly during a very scary experience.

Leave a comment and let me know what you do differently, or if you have a tip that works great for you so we can continue to learn and grow together as a community!


How to Be Nice to Yourself

Are you your own worst critic? Would you allow anyone else in the world to speak to you the way you speak to yourself?  My answers are yes and no, respectively, which is why practicing self-love in the form of self-care has become a top priority in my wellness and diabetes management routine. 

Changing the way you speak to and treat yourself – in other words, being kind to yourself as your default setting instead of vicious personal attacks anytime things don’t go as planned – comes down your willingness to catch yourself in the act, and then doing something about it.

You must continually interrupt old patterns that you know are bringing you down – as they occur in real time – in order to uncondition them as your default response, and in that same moment recondition new responses that are intentionally chosen by you on the basis of self-love practices, positive reinforcement, and personal growth.

Get Intentional About How You Want to Feel

Have you ever woken up in the morning and asked yourself the question “How do I want to feel today?” Have you ever made a clear statement regarding how you intend to feel that day, something like “I intend to feel good today.”

Consciously letting yourself and the Universe know how you intend to feel each day is an extraordinarily empowering practice of self-love, and the difference it makes in how your day unfolds can be miraculous. 

The mental, emotional and physical shift that occurs when you go from the waking thought of “This day is going to suck” to “I intend to feel good and spread love today” is astounding.  It just feels so much better on every level. 

Gaining Pleasure and Avoiding Pain

How would you feel if every time you experienced a setback on a long term project at work, for example, your boss told you that you are worthless, stupid, pathetic, undeserving, that you are just not enough?

You might feel hurt, angry, sad, dejected – I know I would!

Imagine trying to regain focus on that same project with those insulting labels rattling around in your mind – do you think your performance moving forward may be affected negatively? 

Do you think the motivation and excitement you originally felt about working on this project that is truly meaningful to you and those around you may feel diminished because of the negative feedback?

Of course it would. That is human behavior at its core. We are all hardwired in every part of our mind, body, and spirit to move toward pleasure and to avoid pain. Plain and simple.

Now imagine that you are the boss of the long term project of creating and sustaining the state of your mind, body, spirit wellness –because you are. I encourage you to step into and claim that power, because no matter what circumstances you are experiencing in your life, you are always the boss of your choices, and your choices determine your outcomes and feelings.

The long term project your boss-self is working on is creating a sustainable, kind, empathetic, loving relationship with the only body, mind, spirit combo you will ever get in this life. 

After all, the most fulfilling, important, meaningful, influential and impactful relationship you will ever have in your entire life is the one you choose to build with yourself, and unfortunately, most people go their entire lives without learning that all of that life-altering boss power has always been and will always be within them.

And, once you begin to embrace that you get to design and build that relationship however you want to, your life will never be the same again.   

First Things First – Perspective

What is your perspective on you? If the majority of your answers are framed in the negative, then the first thing that must change – if you truly want to be nicer to yourself sustainably – is your perspective.

You see, in every single area of life, our perspectives always determine our priorities and our practices. Always.

If your perspective on something is that it is very important and meaningful to you, it will get prioritized toward the top of your to-do list and you will follow through with the practices that nurture that perspective of importance you’ve assigned it.

For example, have you ever been at the beginning of a romantic relationship where your perspective on your partner was that they were amazing? Where did you prioritize making the time in your schedule to spend with this person? At the top, of course! What were your practices around this person? Did you smile, hold hands, and just choose to be near them as much as possible? Yes? Okay, stick with me.

Have you ever been at the end of a romantic relationship?For some reason, your perspective changed. You received a new piece of information, or experienced a different side of this person – whatever happened, your perspective changed, possibly in an instant, and you knew that the relationship was ending.

The very second you had a shift in your perspective, your priorities and practices changed just as instantaneously. Your priorities became spending as little time around them as possible, and your practices became avoiding hand holding and the like. Are you still with me?

In order to be nicer to yourself, the first and most crucial step is to intentionally choose the perspective that your mind, body, spirit wellness is the most important thing you will ever get to be involved in throughout the entirety of your life, that you deserve love, that you are as deserving of your love as any other person in the Universe, and that you are overwhelmingly grateful for this opportunity, this blessing, to nurture this relationship every single day.

Once you consciously choose that perspective, your priorities and practices will line up in turn. And then it’s simply practice, practice, practice – while being gentle and nonjudgmental with yourself every step of the way.

What Was the Question? Language Matters!

Do you ask yourself any of the following questions, or questions like them, on a regular basis?

  • Why can’t I catch a break?
  • Why do I have such bad luck?
  • Why can’t I get anything right?
  • What is wrong with me?
  • How could I be so stupid?
  • Why does (insert name here) have everything I want and I don’t?

When you ask yourself questions that presuppose that you are unlucky, a failure, not enough, or compares yourself with another person on a regular basis, you are unconsciously training your brain to supply you with low quality answers that will undoubtedly keep you mired down in a self-created sea of seemingly unlucky circumstances, but are mainly manifestations of your own fear-based questions.

After choosing your perspective, you must choose your questions. Instead of asking yourself the above questions when things don’t go as planned, ask yourself questions that are based on self-love – questions that prompt your brain to give you positive, resourceful answers.

  • What action can I take right now to improve my current situation, even by just two millimeters?
  • What step in my action plan tripped me up, and what changes can I make moving forward to create different results?
  • Who do I know that has already achieved the results I am after that I can interview or model or read a book they wrote in order to get where I am trying to go more efficiently and effectively?

Choosing resourceful questions that allow your brain to search for answers in a growth mindset will always produce more desirable results than asking a question that presupposes that you generally suck and that there’s nothing you can do about it. Be nice to yourself, you deserve it!

The Best Friend Test

One fast and easy but extremely effective exercise that I use and teach all the time in order to gauge whether you are being as nice to yourself as you truly deserve is the best friend test.

Here’s how to do it: Take whatever situation, experience,circumstance, or event you are currently examining in your own life and tell it to yourself as if it were your best friend telling you this about themselves. Yes,I am very much suggesting that you talk to yourself!

What would you say to them? Would you offer them words of love, support and encouragement? Or, would you insult and diminish them, and make them feel unworthy for trying to accomplish something?

My guess is that you would love and support them. That you would tell them they did something amazing for trying and to keep their head up and keep at it. And that, my friend, is always the way you must treat yourself– the exact same way you would treat your best friend in the same situation.

I can’t put enough emphasis on the fact that there is no perfect on this journey to being nicer to yourself, only practice. Ebbs and flows. Steps forward and steps backward – this, and all other aspects of life, are not linear. And the more you are willing to practice – just like anything else – the more skilled at being your own biggest supporter you will become.

What is a ZenoBar? + 10% discount

Every now and then I get introduced to a new product through a friend in the diabetes space that is worth sharing.

I’ll be the first to say that I get a little skeptical when I hear about a new snack bar that is healthy and easy on blood sugar levels.

I have my go-to bars that I like as healthier snacking options on the go (I made a video about them here) and often times when I try something new, I’m put off by something in the taste or texture.

When my friend (the lovely Ginger Vieira) told me that she needed to bolus between .50 – 1 unit per ZenoBar and that they actually tasted good and had a list of high quality ingredients, I had to try them for myself.

This description is taken from their website: ZenoBars are made with the best-tasting, most nutritious low net carb ingredients available. We test them on ourselves, as well as other Type-1 and Type-2 diabetics who helped, not only for flavor (fabulous!) but for low-glycemic impact. Some Type-1s report that only a very small bolus may be needed, while some of us don’t require any!

They sent me three flavors to try that I’m listing with my most preferred flavor first: Cocoa Hemp, Strawberry Hemp, Almond Hemp.

I needed just under 1 unit of fast acting insulin to cover each bar (.85 units to be exact which I figured out by the time I ate my 3rd ZenoBar – more to come in a later blog about how microbolusing has massively improved my diabetes management skills.)

I spoke with the owners of this just-started company who are very passionate about their product and about receiving customer feedback, and they offered me a 10% discount to pass on to you if you’d like to give Zeno Bars a try.

Use discount code ZENOBAR10 for a 10% discount on ZenoBars from Amazon (you can read more reviews there as well) or directly from their website.

If you do try them, let me know what you think in the comments below! With lots of love – Daniele 🙂


[Podcast] I Used to Pinch My Hand Around Baked Goods as a Mental Anchor… What?

“In this insightful conversation, Daniele shares her secret for steering clear of donuts, plus practical tips you can start applying to your life right now!”

The title of this post is in reference to a mental tool I used to remind myself why I didn’t really want donuts or other baked goods every time I went to the supermarket. I had to recondition my Pavlovian response to the smell of baked goods in order to sustainably create the new habit of consciously choosing when I wanted to eat less healthy foods, versus defaulting to eating them every time I went food shopping! I share this tool and more in the podcast!

When I first started out in the intimidating world of sharing my deep, intimate thoughts, feelings, and hard-earned experiences regarding how to create a life that is filled with much more joy than pain, particularly while living with chronic disease, I had no idea if anyone was ever going to listen (other than my mom, of course).

Now, eight years and countless blogs, interviews and speaking engagements later, I still have that nagging inner voice (ego) poking at me before I publish a blog or a social media post – Who are you to share all of this? Nobody wants to hear you talk about your bullshit!

Then, as I’ve conditioned myself to do (practiced) over and over and over again, I default to my consciously and intentionally chosen answer that shuts my ego up, at least for long enough to hit the publish button – a poem written by one of my most influential mentors and, in my opinion, one of the most powerful spiritual teachers of this lifetime, Marianne Williamson, entitled Our Deepest Fear:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. 
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. 
It is our light, not our darkness
That most frightens us.

We ask ourselves
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be? 
You are a child of God.

Your playing small 
Does not serve the world. 
There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking 
So that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We are all meant to shine, 
As children do. 
We were born to make manifest 
The glory of God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us; 
It’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine, 
We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. 
As we’re liberated from our own fear, 
Our presence automatically liberates others.

So, with that in mind, I’d like to share my latest Podcast interview for The Diabetes Dish Podcast where I talk about my journey from the mindset of helpless and hopeless self-pity to learning that I, like everyone else, deserves to be loved, particularly and most importantly by myself, and how that changed all aspects of my mind, body, spirit wellness and my relationship with my diabetes for good.


XO – Daniele 🙂