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Real Behavior Change in Primary Care
Improving Patient Outcomes and Increasing Job Satisfaction
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A Toolkit for Creating Lasting Behavior Change in Your Patients

As a primary care provider, you are on the front lines of medical treatment. Oftentimes, you're the first medical professional patients come to when they experience problems with their health. While some of these problems can be resolved by traditional medical treatment, many others are driven by underlying psychological issues and unhealthy lifestyle choices that you may feel powerless to affect. Between repeat patient visits and the frustrating progression of preventable symptoms and conditions, it's no wonder so many medical and behavioral health providers feel burned out and at a loss for effective solutions.

This guide was designed to help you find those solutions and recapture the ability to effectively help patients achieve optimal health and happiness. Real Behavior Change in Primary Care offers ten-minute interventions that provide your patients with the tools they need to change unworkable and unhealthy behaviors. Each short yet powerful intervention utilizes empirically supported skills from acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), a form of cognitive behavioral therapy, to help you empower patients to take charge of the psychological blocks that keep them from resolving their health problems. You'll also apply ACT skills to your own life and learn to better manage stress, recover from burnout, and rediscover the meaning behind your work as a health care provider.

  • Help patients suffering with:
  • Chronic disease
  • Alcohol and substance abuse
  • Chronic pain
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Trauma and abuse
Publisher Reviews
  • "One of the most difficult tasks faced by primary care providers is convincing patients to engage in positive behaviors such as maintaining a diet. Robinson, Gould, and Strosahl’s Real Behavior Change in Primary Care adds ACT to the growing list of techniques that are available to help the primary care provider convince patients to change their behaviors for the better. In simple, readable prose, they outline a strategy with wide implications for improving primary care practice."
    —Robert McGrath, PhD, professor of psychology at Fairleigh Dickinson University

  • "This book is a tremendous resource to primary care providers and providers of behavioral health in primary care. Readers can expect greater satisfaction in seeing their patients reach positive health outcomes. Our organization is appreciative to the authors for enhancing both the career satisfaction of our providers and the quality of care our patients receive."
    —Bill Rosenfeld, LPC, director of integrated behavioral health at Mountain Park Health Center

  • "Real Behavior Change in Primary Care is succinct, practical, and easy to read. It provides the primary care clinician with a fresh view of the complex patient and an array of tools that are easy to implement in a busy clinic, even without a psychotherapy background. The techniques offered can help primary care providers improve management of the complex patient while also healing themselves of the frustration and stress that can accompany a caseload of challenging patients. The authors’ values-driven approach to care is neither paternalistic nor unrealistic. Rather, it supports providers and patients in developing activities congruent with personal values and life directions. I enjoyed reading the book and will be using the techniques illustrated with my patients, my medical and psychology trainees, and myself!"
    —Jeannie A. Sperry, PhD, associate professor and director of behavior science education at West Virginia University Department of Family Medicine

  • "The authors have adapted the latest advances in evidence-based behavioral and cognitive therapies for use in the fast-paced primary care environment. The straightforward explanations, rich array of resources, and practical handouts are immediately beneficial for helping patients live life in a way that is more consistent with their values. Many primary care providers may particularly appreciate the authors’ discussion of how to self-apply ACT interventions to reduce burnout and become reinvigorated with patient care and other valued life activities. This book is an essential resource for any primary care provider working to help patients change what they do and how they think."
    —Jeffrey L. Goodie, PhD, ABPP, clinical health psychologist at Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences in Bethesda, MD, and coauthor of Integrated Behavioral Health in Primary Care

  • "The authors have provided an outstanding set of assessment and intervention tools that primary care providers can use with patients who are stuck in maladaptive health patterns. The downloadable tools, practical advice, and focused clinical examples can be easily incorporated into everyday practice, leading to better patient outcomes, decreased provider burnout, and increased job satisfaction."
    —Christopher L. Hunter, PhD, ABPP, coauthor of Integrated Behavioral Health in Primary Care


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