Motivational Enhancement Therapy

Motivational enhancement therapy (MET) engages patients in increasing their internal motivations for making healthy changes in their drug use, building on a patient's strengths and resources in making prior behavioral changes. Goals are set by the patient, although the counselor may advise specific goals when appropriate. This approach is noncon-frontational. The counselor seeks to have the patient talk about the pros and cons of the substance use, reflecting and summarizing as an active listener in a way that highlights discrepancies between the patient's life goals or beliefs and current drug use behaviors. These discrepancies are then used to increase the patient's internal desire for change or discomfort with the status quo. A patient's stage of readiness to change, whether precontemplative, contemplative, preparation, action, maintenance, or relapse, is also determined at each session. In addition, a patient's self-efficacy for change is assessed, and the patient is guided to talk about prior successful behavioral changes, and any optimism for change is reflected and highlighted (Prochaska et al., 1992). MET has been used in both inpatient and outpatient settings, from one session (brief intervention) to several months of weekly sessions.

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