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Behaviour Change Assignment
Transcript of Behaviour Change Assignment
By Stephanie Comfort
To record baseline data I took a drink bottle with me every day that was full at the start of the day. I recorded every time I drank water and how much I drank. I also recorded any other beverages that I consumed along with the activities I was doing when I did drink, weather it was water or other beverages (eg. eating, studying, working, exercise). These recordings helped me identify any patterns with my water consumption, or where I might be able to swap another beverage for water.
Drink 2 litres of water a day
Health and wellness or Wellbeing are multidimensional concepts that exist woven together. There are 5 dimensions. Often you have to achieve a dimension of one in order to achieve the same dimension of the other. In saying this it is important to acknowledge that people can be well without being one hundred per cent healthy (Corbin, Welk, Corbin & Welk, 2011).
The 5 Dimesions
- Emotional/ Mental
Health: No Mental Illness
Wellness: Generally happy with life
Health: No Illness’s that invade ability to learn
Wellness: informed well enough to enhance quality of life
Health: physiologically able and physically fit
Wellness: fit enough to meet demands of life
Health: ability to function in society
Wellness: involved and can establish meaningful relationships
Health and Wellness: fulfilled in achieving what you aim to in life.
(Corbin et al, 2011)
If people want to optimise their health and wellbeing they will often have to change certain behaviours in their life that affect their ability to be healthy and well. Some organisations conduct surveys to identify the types of behaviours that most affect a population’s ability to be healthy. This is in order to focus on certain behaviour change interventions that can be given to large populations to help resurrect these health issues (Fitzpatric 2010).
There are many models and theories of behaviour; some include Bandura’s Self efficacy and social cognitive theories as well as the theory of planned behaviour and the stages of change or transtheoretical model (Gerrig, Zimbardo, Campbell, Cummings, & Wilkies, 2012). This behaviour change will focus on the behaviour change model as it has been in a wide variety of populations over a vast range of behaviour interventions (Nieuwenhuijsen, Zemper, Miner & Epstein, 2006).
The Stages of change model is based around an individual’s readiness to undertake certain activities. There are seven stages in this model that someone may be it, these are: Pre-contemplation, Contemplation, Preparation, Action, Maintenance and Termination (Prochaska & Velicer, 1997)
No intention to take action within the next 6 months. Usually people in this stage are not aware of the consequences of their unhealthy behaviour or do not believe that they have the ability to change.
Intends to take action within the next 6 months. People in this stage are often paralysed from cost benefit awareness. (is it worth it?)
Intends to take action within the next 30 days and has taken some behavioral steps in this direction. These people have a general plan of action or are seeking help to put a plan in action.
Changed overt behaviour for less than 6 months, this behaviour may not yet be up to the level that the participant intents to reach. For example they may have increased the amount of exercise they are doing, and it may be regular, but they may not accomplish doing it every day to begin with. This stage is common for relapse.
Changed overt behaviour for more than 6 months and are working to prevent relapse.
No temptation to relapse and 100% conﬁdence, this stage the ultimate goal of behaviour change.
(Prochaska & Velicer, 1997)
The behaviour I have selected to modify is my water consumption. According to the behaviour change model, I began this change in the preparation stage, which was prompted by the need to record baseline data and set goals. This assignment aims to take me successfully into the action stage. Baseline data is an important part of behaviour change as it allows you to recognise your strengths and weakness’ to assist with goal setting, and aids in monitoring progress, which are important parts of self-planning (Corbbin et al, 2011)
I have chosen water consumption as water is essential for the human body to function effectively. Some informant benefits of water consumptions for health and wellness are that it contributes to building cell’s within the body, it assists in the hydrolysis of proteins, carbs and lipids, and can oxidate hydrogen containing substrates which are related to fatigue. Water is also a nutrient carrier and removes waste products from our body. Water is also essential to the functioning of our vital organs and therefore inadequate hydration in extreme cases can be fatal and it is also an important factor in loosing heat from the body through sweat (Jéquier & Constant, 2010). This is just a small portion of body functioning that water contributes to, and as discussed earlier, optimal functioning is a result of health and wellbeing (Cobin et al ,2011). This indicates that increasing water intake as an appropriate behaviour to attempt to change.
It is suggested that food alone does not provide an adamant amount of water according to what the body requires and therefore we must consciously consume water to fulfill our needs. Due to this people need to make a conscious effort to consume water as well as food, the recommended daily intake of water for average sedentary adults is between 2-2.5 litres per day (Jéquier & Constant, 2010). This average requirement is what my goal setting was influenced by.
- On 4 occasions I did not consume any water
- the most water in a day consumed was 490ml
- Average water consumed was 65ml a day
- water was mostly consumed after exercise or salty food
- I had a beverage with most meals, not usually water
From my 2 week period of baseline data collection I found that:
Self Planning considerations
So far, the clarifying reasons and identifying needs components of self planing (Corbin et al, 2011), by the end of this Prezi the remaining 4 components will have been covered (setting goals, sellecting program components, writing plan, evaluating progress)(Corbin et al, 2011)
Set a ‘water’ alarm in phone for 3 times a day (7.30am, 12.30pm, 7.00pm, meal times)
Mark up drink bottle with times and drink to the mark according to the time (250mls every 2 hours)
After 2 weeks, change drink bottle mark up to 250mls every hour, drink accordingly
Record how much water was consumed each day in phone (Diary)
Reward myself with an alternate beverage of my choice if I reach the days aim
I may not always have access to water
The people around me may not be encouraging
Too much water before exercise leads to feeling uncomfortable
Week 1 and 2
- Purchase drink bottle with appropriate measurement tool on it, make it up with white board marker (carry this always to avoid water access barrier)
- Set water alarms (see goals) these will remind me to check the drink bottle mark ups to see if I am on track for the day. These are at general mealtimes as baseline data revealed that consume a beverage with food. This way I can replace it with water.
- Use phone reminders to achieve 250mls by 9 am, 500mls by 11, 750mls by 1pm, 1L by 3pm, 1.25L by 5pm, 1.5L by 7pm .
- Record in diary if the day’s goals were achieved, what made it easy or hard. (each day). This will make me aware of the circumstances where I have to make extra effort.
- Do not drink any beverage that is not water.
Week 3 and 4
- Change mark ups on drink bottle to every hour, can now be done in permanent marker as this will not be changed. do this on a 1L drink bottle.
- continue to use phone reminders to check that I am on track for the day
- continue to record diary
- begin to reward myself with alternate beverage (tea, soft drink etc) if I finish the days aim early
Week 5 and 6
- revise diary to assess progress
- continue on with week 3 and 4 if it is working
- Turn off alarms if I feel ready.
Diaries are a good measurement tool because they are easy to administer and can be very accurate. For adults they are seen as the most acute subjective measurement tool (Sirard & Pate, 2001).
Results and Evaluation
Week 1 and 2 of plan ran smoothly with the marked bottled proving to be very effective, launching me successfully into the action stage of change. I reached the marks on the bottle, it got easier every day, and this meant I was confident to go on with my plan for week 2 and 3. as a result my water intake went from an average of 65mls a day to 1.5L
Keeping a diary was effective in revealing that even if I get behind in the day’s water schedule, I was able to catch up. This helped overcome one of the barriers, as I could put off drinking within an hour before exercise and catch up prior.
While the first two weeks ran according to plan and saw me almost completely cutting out all other beverages, the following 4 weeks saw a plateau of water consumption and I continued to consume 1.5 litres of water a day, rather than the initial goal of 2 litres. I continue to meet 2 of my outcome goals daily.
A key factor that I believe would have assisted in my behaviour change would have been to incorporate some social support. If the people around me were also participating in a similar behaviour it would have been easier. I found that my mum was always offering me hot drinks which were very tempting given the cool weather. Social support can lead to other predisposing factors such as self-efficacy, enjoyment, beliefs and attitudes (Welk, 1999).
A better reward system would also have helped. Research shows that using a reward system of positive reinforcement can increase the likelihood of behaviour. This is known as operant conditioning (Gerrig et al, 2012). I did intend to use reward in allowing myself to drink other beverages when I had reached the day’s goal, but I don’t think this reward was motivating enough, if I was to do it again I would choose a reward such as a new item of cloths as this would be something I would appreciate more. Every individual is different and rewards should be personalised according to what is most likely to elicit their desired behaviour.
Behaviour change is common in health and wellbeing as people aim to optimise their quality of life. This behaviour change focuses on water consumption as that is shown to be an important aspect of health. The process of collecting baseline data brought me into the preparation stage of change, I then moved into the action stage as I began to try to change my behaviour of drinking water. Overall this assignment has focused on the important aspects of self-planning that are involved with changing a behaviour, particularly concentrating on the goal setting, planning and evaluating components discussed in Corbin et al (Corbin et al, 2011).
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Gerrig, R. Zimbrdo, P. Campell, A. Cumming, S. Wilkies, F (2012). Psychology and life: 2nd Australisian edition. French Forrest New South Wales. Pearson.
Jéquier, E., & Constant, F. (2010). Water as an essential nutrient: The physiological basis of hydration. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 64(2), 115-23. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/ejcn.2009.111
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Welk, G.J. (1999). The youth physical activity promotion model: A conceptual bridge between theory and practice. Quest, 51, 5-23