This is the point at which the directive aspect of MI is introduced. MI is done in relation to a clear change goal. The MI clinician uses specific strategic method to elicit and strengthen change talk. This is a defining aspect of MI that differentiates it from general client-centered counseling.
Content normally covered at this stage includes specific methods for evoking change talk, and appropriate ways to respond to change talk when it occurs, so as to strengthen in.
[[Ten Strategies for Evoking Change Talk]]
'''Responding to Change Talk'''
When you hear change talk, don’t just sit there! Normally in MI one would respond in one of four ways, represented by the acronym EARS:
''Explore''. Ask for elaboration: how, in what ways, why? Ask for examples: when was the last time this happened (e.g., for an adverse consequence). Note that these are included in the list of [[ten ways to elicit change talk]]. They are actually follow-up questions when change talk occurs.
''Affirm''. Express agreement, appreciation, encouragement, etc.
''Reflect''. This is the most common response to change talk – to offer a simple or complex reflection.
''Summary''. Change talk is also collected in “bouquet” summaries.
Sometimes it is also helpful to clarify what MI is not: [[Ten things MI is not]]