Module 4: Building Conversations

4.5 Use Time Effectively

AgeUse Your Client's Time Wisely

In many cultures, it is important to establish rapport with a person before beginning a nutrition counseling session. The few extra minutes taken to do this may save many hours of work in the long run.

Use simple, direct, and repeated messages. Teach one idea at a time for greatest impact, and reinforce it later.

Confront barriers head on. This way, your client will walk away with positive feelings about the encounter with you, and will be more likely to listen to other suggestions you may make in the future.

When time with a client is limited, don’t expect to make drastic changes. As we stated previously, it’s better to find out what the person needs to know and address those issues.

Combine Nutrition with Social Events

Plan social occasions that allow people from different cultures to interact and share food experiences while providing you with an opportunity for nutrition education.

Arrange for a snack tasting: Have tasting parties at the WIC, Head Start, or other site to give people a chance to try new or unfamiliar foods. Participants may be particularly receptive to new foods used as snacks, since using them in the daily food fare does not alter the main meals.

Help plan wellness parties: Have a wellness party based on the Tupperware® model. Focus on healthful eating, and involve a MCH professional. Involve the men in the community, if possible. Community members might be paid for giving the party.