Understanding Hard to Maintain Behaviour Change: A Dual Process Approach

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John Wiley & Sons, Feb 3, 2014 - Psychology - 252 pages
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The book presents an integrative theory of hard-to-maintain behaviours, that includes hard-to-reduce or eliminate behaviours like smoking and other drug use, overconsumption of food or unsafe sex, and hard-to-sustain behaviours like exercise and sun-safe behaviours.  Most of the examples come from the author’s work on tobacco smoking, but it is relevant to anyone who is concerned to understand why some forms of desirable behaviour are so hard to achieve, and to those trying to help people change. It also has important implications for public health campaigns and for the development of policies to nudge behaviour in desirable ways.

The book provides readers with frameworks to:

- Determine whether a “hard to maintain” behaviour is a result of the skills needed to perform it, its reinforcement history, the way the person thinks about it, the context, or some combination of these.

- Better integrate cognitive and behavioural change strategies, including emergent strategies related to mindfulness and acceptance, plus novel ways of retraining operational processes.

- Understand the different nature of challenges for behaviours where multiple attempts are typically required before the desired behaviour pattern is sustained.

- Better understand the role of feelings and emotions as influences on behaviour.

- Understand the limits of environmental factors to determine change.

- Understand the limits of self-control and will-power.

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About the author (2014)

Ron Borland PhD is the Nigel Gray Distinguished Fellow in Cancer Prevention, at the Cancer Council Victoria, Australia where he has worked since 1986. He also has honorary appointments at the University of Melbourne and Monash University. His background is in psychology with degrees from Monash University and the University of Melbourne.  Prior to joining the Cancer Council, he worked as a psychologist at a major psychiatric institution in Melbourne and in Papua New Guinea. He has over 300 publications in peer-reviewed journals, mostly related to aspects of tobacco control. He is one of the Principal Investigators of the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project: an international collaboration currently active in over 20 countries. His main research areas are studying the impact on smokers of tobacco control policies, understanding determinants of smoking cessation outcomes, and developing and evaluating mass-disseminable interventions to help smokers quit.

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