Key word here is partnership.
We are not supportive friends. We are not dictating their course of action. We are stepping alongside our patients or clients as a partner.
Top down approach is directive and authoritative. “Follow this diet”
Bottom up approach is what a friend uses. “I’m here. Let me know what you need.”
Acknowledge the partnership. “I am here to help you navigate this journey. You are doing the work and I am supporting you and guiding you.”
Let’s meet them on equal ground.
What do we bring to the table?
What do they bring to the table?
How to foster this partnership
Create a comfortable space. Virtually or in person
Listen to their story. The best question is a statement that elicits more information. Tell me more.
Reflective listening. Deeper listening that reflects back change talk - DARN
Be curious. Avoid assumptions and conclusions about your patient
Encourage self-efficacy. Don’t overwhelm with “to do’s”
Use SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound.
Don’t be a problem fixer. Think less about fixing their problem and more about empowering them to help themselves.
Assert authority when needed for red flag issues and safety concerns