Psychology in practice
This chapter examines the key factors that emerge from research on the various social cognitive models of behaviour as particularly influential on behavioural change. It presents a case study of Caroline who is a practice nurse in a semi-urban general practitioners' clinic. Caroline sees patients shortly after the doctor has told them that they are putting their health at risk; many are worried and anxious about their future health. Caroline needs a range of skills to deal with the range of factors that could be influencing the lifestyle behaviours in her clients. A perception of risk is a central factor in the majority of psychological models of behavioural change; it delivers the costs side of the basic behavioural change evaluation. Motivational interviewing is a technique based on cognitive-behavioural therapy which aims to enhance an individual's motivation to change health behaviour. Lifestyle change is a complex challenge which individuals must address outside of healthcare settings in their daily lives.