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Motivational Interviewing

Patient Worksheet

Guide patients through the "My Health Goal" worksheet to help define goals and monitor progress.

Using interview styles that encourage the patient to be an active participant in their health, while respectfully acknowledging the life complexity and competing priorities that patients may be facing, are particularly useful. Consider these examples:


Example Statement


Developing a shared agenda

What worries you (about the health problem) the most?

Acknowledging a healthy behavior

I’m really glad that you have been thinking about giving up tobacco.


Assessing confidence and readiness for change

How confident are you about making this change?

Eliciting decision-making


What is good about the way you are eating now?
What would you change about the way you are eating now?
How do you think you might go about making that change?



Note that healthcare professional statements that are positive messages in response to small steps towards healthy change or thinking about healthy lifestyle change have been associated with improved health outcomes. The expression of optimism and hope for change is of high value to the patient’s confidence in ability to self-manage well, which is referred to as self-efficacy.