Motivational Interviewing (MI) is a collaborative conversation style for strengthening a person’s motivation and commitment to change.” (Miller & Rollnick, 2013). Facilitators of MI use the “spirit” of Motivational Interviewing to demonstrate an empathic working alliance of compassion and acceptance when attending to the person seeking guidance.
MI focuses on using people’s value systems to generate one’s attributes and create a target for change. The use of a guiding conversational style promotes a collaborative working alliance that is rooted in acceptance and compassion. Ambivalence is a natural process people have when faced with change.
The role of a MI helper is to serve as a guide in assisting the member in locating existing strengths as they trace their autobiographical stories in-session, so they can regurgitate these stories out-of-session when faced with challenges to their goal. The guiding style of eliciting questions, affirmations, and reflections aligns with the current views of the Health and Wellness Coach.
Motivational Interviewing is a key concept that prepares you not only for the NBHWC Exam but is foundational when working with your clients. Putting these theories into practice will help you be a more effective health coach.