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Showing posts from July, 2011

Motivational Interviewing Goes to War

We know that motivational interviewing is used effectively for addictions, psychological problems, health related behavior change, medication adherence, life coaching, and other “clinical” issues. But what about it’s use in the military setting? A recent article by James Cowan, Nengyalai Amalyar and Mohammad Mustafa argues for the use of MI in the area of combat advising.

If United States forces are ever to leave Afghanistan, “standing up a professional Afghan National Security Force (ANSF) is central” to this effort, according to the authors. Doing so requires a partnership between advisors and Afghan military personnel.

Advisors assigned to Afghanistan are told anecdotally that establishing an effective partnership depends on such elements as; developing rapport and respect, building trust, sharpening skills of persuasion, exercising patience, effecting empowerment, etc. but they are not given direct training in effective, proven ways to do these things. The authors argue that MI is …