Sep 2014

The Role of Self-Efficacy in Health

Hidden away in our subconscious are the beliefs by which we live. We make decisions every day based on these beliefs without thinking about them. What happens when these beliefs are challenged? Do we shy away from a challenge because we doubt our abilities, or do we welcome the challenge and rise to the occasion? What is Self-Efficacy Self-efficacy is a person’s belief, or confidence, in his or her ability to be successful in certain situations. The concept of self-efficacy, a core aspect of social cognitive theory, originated from psychologist Albert Bandura. According to Bandura, self-efficacy has an impact on all aspects of our lives; emotional, psychological, motivational, and is a strong predictor of behavior change. Self-efficacy beliefs, or self- perceptions, provide the foundation for well-being, personal accomplishments, and life choices. A person with a high sense of self-efficacy approach tasks as a challenge rather than a threat to be avoided. They set challenging goals, maintain a strong sense of commitment to them, and recover after setbacks or failures attributing these failures to lack of knowledge and skills which can be acquired (Bandura 1977). Overall, self-efficacy is concerned with people’s beliefs in their capabilities to exercise control over their functioning and over the events that affect their lives. Self-Efficacy in Health Self-efficacy provides a way of tapping into the power of consumers to engage in their health. Studies tell us there is a strong relationship between self-efficacy and behavior change. A critical factor in determining how successful a person will be in taking control of, and improving their health depends on their level of self-efficacy. People may understand their health is determined by their behavior, but  believe they lack the knowledge and skills necessary to make those changes. Their success depends on several factors; their successes and failures with behavior…

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Jun 2014

Self-Leadership: The Foundation to Health

When you see the word “leadership” what comes to mind? Your answer, most likely, is not related to health. However all our thoughts and actions result from our own self-leadership. Let’s examine what this really means. The concept of self-leadership simply put, means influencing one’s self. The primary focus of self-leadership is that our behaviors and thoughts affect our personal effectiveness in achieving success in all areas of life (physical, emotional, social, career, family, creativity, financial). We lead ourselves through action and behavior change in order to get the results we desire. Holding ourselves accountable is also important throughout the process. The practice of self-leadership described above, is an integrative framework between the mind and the body. It encompasses our attitudes, values, and beliefs, the world we live in, our needs and desires, and the choices we make. Understanding how these factors influence the way we live our life and how they affect our health, is the first step in becoming an effective self-leader. Putting self-leadership into practice requires several behavioral techniques such as self-observation, goal setting, self-management, mental imagery, self-talk, and self-esteem, to name a few. Using these strategies can make an immediate difference in our health, our career, our relationships, our world. When people are engaged in managing their health they are practicing skills necessary to identify their health needs, working with their healthcare team, making critical decision, and adopting lifestyle changes for long-term success. Health Promotion Associates, LLC has identified four key concepts that promote active engagement in enhancing health, preventing a disease, or managing a chronic illness. Here are the four key concepts; Developing self-management skills Problem-solving and making critical decisions Engaging in positive behavior changes Committing to continuously measuring degrees of success Self-leadership doesn’t mean you have to go it totally alone. Self-leadership involves identifying…

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