Motivational Interviewing is a collaborative, goal-orientated style of communication with a strong evidence base to motivate a client to want to change. This communication style is helpful for those who have mixed feelings to change, lack confidence, or experience self-doubt as to whether they are ready/want to change, and those that are unable to see the value in change. Most often, MI is delivered alongside other treatment approaches.
MI helps to empower the client and forms an equal partnership between the Clinician and Client, where the clinician guides the client by listening, reflecting, and then, with permission, directing.
The ‘spirit’ of MI incorporates the following:
Collaboration – Working together to build rapport and trust by taking the stance that the individual is the expert on themselves, whilst the clinician is the expert in supporting behaviour change
Evocation – The clinician supports the individual to identify the skills and resources they already possess to change while helping them find their ‘why’, allowing for lasting, more meaningful change.
Acceptance – Whereby the individual can make an informed choice as to whether to change or not change, without judgment or criticism.
Compassion – The clinician listens, is empathetic, and advocates for the well-being of the individual in a selfless way.