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Where the Magic Happens

Sometimes our clients’ resistance is about staying in that place in which they are most familiar, the way it’s always been, the status quo, the ‘beast they know.’ That place is also called the Comfort Zone. There appears to be a safety component to staying where we know we can’t get hurt, where risk seems to be minimized, and where there is no movement. We all need a comfort zone and we all need the ability to return to safe-haven when we need to do so. And, it might be that some of our clients are nestled here because fear paralyzes them or because anything else seems impossible. What if we could stimulate our clients to dip a toe outside of their comfort zone and into the pool of possibility, or, at least peek out a window of opportunity toward their next step in the behaviour change process. Consider this representation of what that next step might offer: read more…

Motivational Reinforcement ~ The Beauty Patch

One of the more intriguing advertizing initiatives launched by Dove was its Beauty Patch enterprise. For the past decade, Dove’s Real Beauty campaign has used female empowerment as an advertising tactic, an apparently altruistic strategy to entice customers with the concept that women are more beautiful than they think they are. The Beauty Patch crusade is one in which six women were asked by body image psychologist Dr. Ann Kearney-Cooke to wear Dove’s RB-X ‘beauty patch’ for 12 hours a day over the course of two weeks. During that period, the women were invited to keep a daily video diary. read more…

Sparking Behaviour Change from Self-Relationship Realizations

From our experience, it seems like many of the health issues that our clients present to us – dietary habits, struggles with body weight, smoking behaviours, oral health behaviours etc – are less about those particular manifestations than they are about deeper issues. We would offer that these are more symptomatic behaviours that stem from clients relationships to themselves or some aspect of themselves. For example, struggles with body weight might be about a client’s relationship to his or her body and/or to her or his relationship to food. Often, we spend a lot of time working on these transparent symptoms without really getting at the root of or behind the veil of the symptomatic behaviour. read more…

Being with, or Busting Stuck-ness

Sometimes, our clients can have an overwhelming feeling of being stuck or overwhelmed or helpless. And sometimes that feeling is a result of past experiences or stories that they have made up about their situation. Consider this humorous example of how devastating such perceptions can be… read more…

Being ‘over there,’ in empathy with our clients

Almost by chance, I happened upon a fascinating video done by Dr Brené Brown, a research professor at the University of Houston. She is a best-selling author, speaker and research professor who has spent the past decade studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame. Her video, The Power of Empathy is, in our view, a superb and succinct illustration about empathy and its differentiation from sympathy: read more…

Exploding Silos of Belief and Behaviour

Part of the art of working with people and motivating them, or even better, stimulating their own motivation toward a change or changes in health behaviour/s is breaking down apparent barriers and resistance to change. We are all self-conditioned to envelop ourselves in our own silos of belief and customary behaviour. read more…

Evoking Motivation and Transformation

In the new, 3rd edition of their book Motivational Interviewing: Helping People Change (Guilford, 2012), authors and MI architects, Miller and Rollnick provide a refreshing explanation and discussion about this powerful approach to facilitating change. The book is substantively restructured around the new four-process, step-model of MI – engaging, focusing, evoking, and planning read more…

Reaching our Clients

I read recently, of all places in a Jack Reacher novel, that “ninety per cent of asking questions is about listening to answers.” It’s true for all manner of communication and dialogue from teaching to detective work and certainly through to motivational interviewing. read more…

Survival and Thrival: MI Tactics for Health Issues

This blog is a bit unusual in that we want to use an example from a series of presentations called, “Cancer Care Talks: Strategies to Empower Your Wellness.” The talk is entitled, Survivorship: How do You Want it to Be? and the reason we want to highlight it is because it demonstrates vividly how patients and health professionals can shift read more…

Cementing Commitment to Change

Business models contain compelling indicators for building personal commitment to change and the applicability of these models to health behaviour change is very appropriate. Click here, for example, to see one graphic representation of a business model depicting the process of committing to change. read more…

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