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What Are the Benefits of Motivational Interviewing?

What Are the Benefits of Motivational Interviewing?

Many professionals are skeptical about seeking treatment for a mental illness, and it makes sense. From a large-scale perspective, treatment can take up time from work, which no business professional really wants to lose. Mental health is important, however, and if you’ve been noticing signs of a mental illness, it’s best that you complete a comprehensive evaluation by a healthcare professional. If you can get a firm grasp on your mental health, you have much better chances of running your personal and professional life more efficiently. If you’re still unsure about whether treatment is right for you, motivational interviewing could help you work through your thought process.

Motivational interviewing is used in therapy to assist clients in making decisions about moving forward with the process of treatment and recovery. Meant to be more of a “hands-off” approach, the therapist is more likely to listen than to offer suggestions. The idea behind motivational interviewing is that whatever decision a person makes about their life, they are going to be more invested in their choice if they are making it solely on their own reasoning and in their own time. The therapist is merely there to help you understand your thought process and discover the benefits and negatives of moving forward.

Previous research has proven the efficacy of motivational interviewing in working with individuals from a variety of backgrounds and health conditions. For example, a 2016 study published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology sought to explore the benefits of motivational interviewing versus cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) alone on individuals with severe generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). A total of 42 individuals were randomly placed into treatment groups and attended them for either 15 sessions (CBT alone) or 4 motivational interviewing sessions and 11 CBT sessions (equaling 15 total). Researchers found the following:

  • Clients who received motivational interviewing as part of their treatment were shown to be about 5 times more likely at 12-months following treatment to no longer meet the criteria for their severe GAD disorder
  • There were twice as many dropouts in CBT alone compared to groups that also involved motivational interviewing
  • Following treatment from the study, participants in the motivational interviewing group reported steeper declines in worry and general distress than the other group

If you’re considering treatment but haven’t made an affirmative decision yet, motivational interviewing could be an excellent option for you.

If you haven’t already, speak with someone from a professional treatment center to learn more about programs to best suit your needs. Optimal recovery is possible, and you are not alone in your pursuit for happiness, health, and wellbeing.

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