Enhancing motivation for change in problem drinking: A controlled comparison of two therapist styles

TitleEnhancing motivation for change in problem drinking: A controlled comparison of two therapist styles
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1993
AuthorsMiller, WR, Benefield, RG, Tonigan, JS
JournalJournal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology
Date PublishedJun
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number0022-006X (Print)0022-006X (Linking)
Accession Number8326047
Keywords*Motivation, Adult, Alcoholism/psychology/*rehabilitation, Double-Blind Method, Feedback, Female, Humans, Male, Nondirective Therapy/methods, Outcome and Process Assessment (Health Care), Patient Compliance/psychology, Psychotherapy/*methods

To investigate the impact of counselor style, a 2-session motivational checkup was offered to 42 problem drinkers (18 women and 24 men) who were randomly assigned to 3 groups: (a) immediate checkup with directive-confrontational counseling, (b) immediate checkup with client-centered counseling, or (c) delayed checkup (waiting-list control). Overall, the intervention resulted in a 57% reduction in drinking within 6 weeks, which was maintained at 1 year. Clients receiving immediate checkup showed significant reduction in drinking relative to controls. The 2 counseling styles were discriminable on therapist behaviors coded from audiotapes. The directive-confrontational style yielded significantly more resistance from clients, which in turn predicted poorer outcomes at 1 year. Therapist styles did not differ in overall impact on drinking, but a single therapist behavior was predictive (r = .65) of 1-year outcome such that the more the therapist confronted, the more the client drank.

Go to top