Home – NEW Forums Module 6 – Comorbidity & Relapse Spring 2023 Motivational Interviewing and Harm Reduction Reply To: Motivational Interviewing and Harm Reduction


I work as an outreach counsellor and have noticed that lately my go-to harm reduction approach is fostering communication. I think back to what motivational interviewing is and how similar in theory it is to humanistic tradition such as person centered therapy. MI is a non-intrusive way to build motivation for change. It’s amazing how well people communicate when the believe that you care. Conveying the core MI elements of empathy and acceptance (also congruent with PCT) goes a very long way. I find the session typically evolves on its own once these two elements are in motion. I had a youth tell me the other day they are really missing the feeling of being absolutely drunk. This was serious communication progress for this youth and we were able to have a factual conversation about alcohol and its connection to this youth’s suicidality. So, to summarize – communication is a key proponent of harm-reduction. Without it, we wouldn’t have been able to co-construct a harm reduction plan that the youth is actually going to relate to.