Theories & Approaches
Benefits and Challenges of Stages of Change
The benefits of using the Stages of Change model are many:
- You can create a climate where realistic, positive change can occur, instead of setting yourself (and your program participants) up for failure and disappointment.
- Especially for addictive or otherwise compelling behaviors, you can turn relapses and setbacks into learning opportunities — which will translate into more lasting progress down the road.
- You can help program participants stay motivated and watch them make new, healthy habits a permanent part of their daily lives.
However, incorporating Stages of Change into a health education or other type of program requires some investments of time and other resources. Challenges include:
- figuring out instruments and other tools that accurately assess participants' stages of change
- adapting programs to incorporate the Stages of Change model in appropriate and beneficial ways, and
- evaluating and assessing these new efforts