Today’s post comes from Nadia Browne. Nadia is a registered dietitian and a PhD student in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Alberta. She is also the current Vice Chair of the University of Alberta’s CON-SNP and the Chapter Representative of the CON-SNP National Executive. You can find more about Nadia here!
Motivational interviewing (MI) is a collaborative communication style that can help to strengthen a person’s own motivation and commitment to change.1 It is patient-centered and designed to help people explore and express their own reasons for change. When people are ambivalent about making health-related changes, using MI can encourage them to have a conversation about their weight management goals and lead to positive behaviour change.2
To facilitate this behaviour change in pediatric obesity management, healthcare professionals (HCPs) trained in MI frequently incorporate these four core principles:3-5
- Express empathy through reflective listening
- Develop discrepancy between clients’ goals or values and their current behaviour
- Adjust to client resistance rather than opposing it directly
- Support self-efficacy and optimism