2022-03-02 08:52

#Elements of change

  1. Readiness to change
  2. Barriers to change
  3. Likelihood to relapse

#Stages of change

From the transtheoretical model (Prochaska and DiClemente, 1982)

  • Precontemplation
    • This is denial
  • Contemplation
    • This is ambivelance. Help people to see the pros and cons of changing behaviour. What are the barriers?
  • Preparation
    • Help them experiment with small changes
  • Action
    • How can we celebrate the goals we've met as a community? We have social needs as humans
  • Maintenance
    • What motivates us to keep up habits?
  • Relapse
    • Can happen at any time. Usually comes with dissapointment and frustration. Relapse will become less frequent and smaller until change happens.

#Behaviour change

Knowing where people are in the model of change allows you to design for it. Designing for change is designing for behaviour change. There are two things that influence behaviour change: Stimuli and Consequences.

  • Behaviour
    • Anything you can see happening. Some psychologists question if thinking is behaviour because you cannot see it.
  • Stimuli
    • What you put in front of people to illicit behaviour
  • Consequences
    • What happens immediately after the behaviour

#Maximising change

Positive reinforcement works better than negative reinforcement or punishment. Give people a positive incentive. Eg: campaigning politicians by saying 'By doing X you will get our vote' works better than 'I will not vote for you if you do X'. Also see 'Take back control' - the Brexit campaign.

#Dangers of imposing change

  • Behavioural consequences

    • Avoidance
    • Conflict
    • Delay
    • Extra cost
  • Phisiological

    • Fight or flight response - heartbeat and fast breathing
    • Fatigue, stress, anxiety
  • Emotional

    • Cultural shock or fear
    • Stress, anxiety, depression
  • Cognitive

    • Learning curve


Grief affects change and change affects grief. There are many models of grief - one is:

  • Shock and numbness
  • Yearning and searching
  • Disorganisation and despair
  • Reorganisation and recovery

Tasks for transitioning through grief

  • Accepting the loss
  • Work through the pain of grief
  • Adjust to the new environment with the missing element
  • Embark on a new life while enduring connection with the loss

Grief as powerful change catalyzer

  • Leave space for new dreams and goals
  • Foster a sense of belonging
  • Our role as designers is not to move on, it is to design to move forward with it


  • Change happens in stages - it is not linear and takes time
  • We are creatures of comfort (habits are automatic - change with habits that are stronger and automaticnotes) - perceived positive changes have a higher chance of influencing behaviour change
  • Find common ground when there's conflicts of interest
  • Imposing change has emotional, physical and psychological effects
  • Grief and change are intertwined and inseparable, but grief can be a powerful tool for change