What is a Decisional Balance worksheet?
Making a balanced decision is essential in many aspects of life, from personal to professional contexts. It involves weighing the pros and cons of each available option and considering the potential risks and rewards that come with each choice. Taking emotion out of the equation also helps ensure that decisions are made objectively and based on logic.
Mental health professionals often use a Decisional Balance Worksheet to help patients weigh the pros and cons of a difficult decision, especially regarding behavioral change.
Generally, the worksheet will include two columns. The left column is labeled “Benefits” and outlines the potential benefits of making a particular decision; the right column is named "Costs" and outlines the potential drawbacks. The worksheet may also include reflection questions to further the patient's exploration of each option.
This visual aid is designed to provide structure and organization to the decision-making process, helping patients become more aware of their options and ultimately make logical choices.
How does this Decisional Balance worksheet work?
This Decision Balance Worksheet is free and easy to use. Here are some steps you can follow to start using the form in your practice:
Step One: Access the template
Download a copy of the Decisional Balance Worksheet using the link provided on this page. You can also access the form using the Carepatron app or our nifty resources library.
Step Two: Provide your patient with a copy
Hand your patient a copy of the form and explain how it can help them reflect on their options for making a behavioral change. Make sure to answer any questions they may have.
Step Three: Let the patient complete the form
Ask your patient to identify a behavior they want to change and weigh its pros and cons. Give them ample time to reflect on their answers and complete the form.
Step Four: Review the form together
After your patient has filled out the worksheet, sit down with them to go over their answers. Discuss the pros and cons of each option and any potential risks and rewards that may come with them.
Step Five: Secure the worksheet
Because this form contains confidential patient information, store the worksheet securely. Keep a digital copy of the form for your records.
Decisional Balance example (sample)
We have written a Decisional Balance Worksheet example to illustrate better how to complete this form. This sample is written by a fictitious patient wanting to change their unhealthy eating behavior. You can view the sample here or download the PDF as a reference.
When to use these worksheets for Decisional Balance?
Using the Decisional Balance Worksheet can help your patient weigh the pros and cons of a difficult decision, especially regarding behavioral change. You can also utilize this form if or when:
You want to provide structure
The Decisional Balance Worksheet can help you create a more organized approach to weighing the pros and cons of a decision. By providing your patient with this visual aid, you can help them become more aware of their options and ultimately make an informed decision.
Your patient needs to take emotion out of the equation
Sometimes it can be difficult for a patient to make an unbiased decision when faced with a difficult choice. Using the Decisional Balance Worksheet, you can help them remove their feelings from the process and decide based on logic.
You want to promote self-reflection
The worksheet includes reflection questions to help your patient further explore each option. Doing so can encourage your patient to understand their decision's potential risks and rewards and make a well-informed choice.
You want to ensure accuracy
By providing the patient with a visual aid, you can ensure that your patient accurately represents the pros and cons of their decision. This is especially important for more serious decisions, such as whether or not to seek medical treatment, a career change, or other life-altering changes.
You want to encourage patient involvement in their care
Utilizing the Decisional Balance Worksheet can promote patient involvement in their care. This enables your patient to participate actively in decision-making and take ownership of their choice and health.
Who is this printable Decisional Balance worksheet PDF for?
The Decisional Balance Worksheet is ideal for healthcare professionals looking to help their patients make more informed decisions. Specifically, this form can be a handy tool for:
- Primary care physicians
- Social Workers
- Physician assistants
- Substance abuse counselors
This worksheet can also be used in different settings, such as hospitals, clinics, and school counseling centers.
Benefits of free Decisional Balance worksheets
The Decisional Balance Worksheet offers several benefits, such as:
This worksheet can be used in many different settings and for various purposes. It's also easy to customize, so you can tailor it to fit your patient’s unique needs.
It's easy to use
The Decisional Balance Worksheet is simple to use and understand, making it an effective tool for helping your patient weigh the pros and cons of their decision. Your patient can also quickly fill out the form anytime, anywhere.
It helps your patient make an unbiased decision
You can use this worksheet to help your patient remove emotion from their decision-making process and make an unbiased choice. By doing so, you can help ensure that your patient makes the best decision for their needs.
It can be used to weigh the pros and cons of any decision
The Decisional Balance Worksheet can be used for any decision, including behavioral change. This form helps your patient explore their choice's potential risks and rewards and decide on the best course of action based on logic.
Why use this Decisional Balance app?
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