Do you speak up?

Are you good at speaking up for yourself? Advocating for yourself? Tooting your own horn? Many people aren’t. There’s evidence that women are worse at it than men.

This skill is particularly important in the workplace. In order to get a raise or a promotion, you are probably going to have to let your boss know what you’re doing and how well you are doing it. In diabetes management, I think it translates to asking questions. When you visit the diabetes health professional do you ask questions?

It is important for your diabetes educator or other provider to know what you don’t know, what’s confusing or unclear to you, or what you are just plain getting mixed up. I write my questions down – starting immediately after my visit – and save them for my next appointment (months away). I make sure to ask all of my questions and that I get answers that make sense.

As a diabetes educator, I can assure you that we want you to ask questions. We don’t want to talk about things that don’t interest you; rather, we want to focus on what’s important, unclear, or scary to you. Bring a list of questions to your next appointment and let the provider know you want to leave time to ask them. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, it may be time to consider finding a new diabetes health professional.

Don’t forget that you are the most important person on your health care team.

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