Motivational interviewing is a stance within the therapeutic approach and can be employed in the treatment of a wide variety of presenting issues.

Motivational interviewing is a therapeutic approach that involves the therapist working collaboratively with the individual to identify ambivalence and enhance change talk. This can allow treatment to progress and move forward in a more helpful and effective way. Motivational interviewing is often used at the beginning of treatment but can be used throughout the therapeutic process. This can allow individuals to overcome treatment interfering behaviours and resolve ambivalence that they may be experiencing at different points during therapy. 

Motivational interviewing is thought of as a way of being throughout the therapeutic process – one in which the therapist is evocative and communicates the benefit of change through language and open dialogue. Change is seen as a process that can be fostered and developed, even in the face of treatment barriers and challenges. 

There are certain strategies that therapists who use Motivational Interviewing will offer. These include discussing and identifying stages of change with an individual to allow for a better understanding of where they are in the process of behaviour change. It also may involve identifying the pros and cons of behaviour change. This involves considering one’s reasons to change one’s behaviour as well as acknowledging the reasons for staying the same. Other strategies involve thinking forward to the future and reflecting on the past.

These different approaches in Motivational Interviewing allow for the emergence of what is referred to as change talk during the therapeutic process. When change talk appears, it provides an opportunity for people to learn more about why and how they might want to begin to change within the context of treatment. It also allows for discussions regarding why change is important and how it would impact their life moving forward. It is a very powerful way of speaking with your therapist and can help you to move forward with recovery and progress.

At FTPS, associates use motivational interviewing strategies to enhance engagement with therapy, especially if an individual is finding it challenging to be fully onboard with the proposed treatment. Motivational interviewing may also be incorporated into treatment as one of many strategies that help people stay engaged and to continue the challenging work of therapy.

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