Module 6: Solving Problems and Planning for the Unexpected

New Beginnings: A Discussion Guide for Living Well With Diabetes

For the complete discussion guide, download this page as a [PDF – 697 KB]

What You Need to Know
couple in a room surrounding by moving boxes

Living with diabetes is easier with a consistent daily routine, but the reality is that life throws us curve balls, and minor problems can have a major impact. It is important for people with diabetes to learn problem solving skills that will help them adapt to unexpected problems, stay resilient in the face of challenges, and plan for the unexpected (including emergencies).

Discussion Time: 45 to 60 minutes


  • Problem solving skills
  • Common problems while living with diabetes
  • Planning for the unexpected (including emergencies)

By the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the four steps to successful problem solving and how to use them to adapt to unexpected situations in their efforts to manage their diabetes.
  • Name at least three action steps they plan to take to prepare for emergencies.

Suggested stories for this module:


Key Messages

  1. Good problem-solving skills can help a person with diabetes be more prepared and more resilient (recover more quickly) when unexpected situations or problems occur.
  2. Having good problem-solving skills means being able to recognize a problem, develop a plan to solve the problem, prepare for and use the plan, and evaluate how well the plan worked.
  3. It is important for people with diabetes and their families to be prepared for emergencies and natural disasters like hurricanes, snowstorms, and earthquakes.

Connecting Threads

Connecting Threads are topics that can be incorporated into New Beginnings sessions depending on the goals and needs of your participants.

Recommended Connecting Threads:

Going Virtual Tips

  • Use the virtual whiteboard to brainstorm ways to be prepared for emergencies. See the Connecting Thread: Facilitating New Beginnings Online [PDF – 221 KB] for ideas on how to adapt activities.
  • The content on the Problem-Solving Plan Worksheet [DOC – 44 KB] can be shared as a Microsoft Word document or Google Doc before the session or after as homework. Group members can then fill it in online without having to print it.
  • The video stories for this module can be played by sharing your screen (and computer audio) through your video teleconferencing platform. Another option is to share the links to the videos with your group members by email before the session starts.
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Page last reviewed: May 18, 2022