Exploring Self-Efficacy and Health Outcomes

How to Navigate a Complex Healthcare System
July 8, 2016

Exploring Self-Efficacy and Health Outcomes

Proposed by renowned Stanford University professor Albert Bandura, self-efficacy is defined as one’s belief in his/her ability to succeed in specific situations or accomplish a task vitally impacts how one approaches his/hers every day goals, tasks, and challenges.

In today’s day and age, it is quick for individuals to get caught up on all the negative aspects of society – especially when the majority of media outlets such as the news focuses on such stories. As a consequence, it is easy for individuals to find themselves caught in a feedback loop in which negative societal matters continually feed into negative personal feelings. In order to counteract this loop, individuals must exhibit some sort of strong self-awareness which allows them to augment their thoughts of accomplishment and personal well-being. To do this, many factors will need to come into play including the knowledge that resources and help are available. Although it is evident that each individual person is unique in their own ways, by simply having continual faith in the mantra “Mind over Matter,” this heuristic can ultimately produce many beneficial outcomes.

People’s beliefs about their self-efficacy can be developed by various sources of influence. The most effective way in creating a strong sense of efficacy involves mastery of experiences. Throughout life, we learn that successes positively influences an individual’s behavior, and in contrast, failures undermine it. While this “success” can be difficult for some to achieve because of inconsistencies due to individuality, our main mission at About Health is empowering communities of color to improve health outcomes and promote wellness thus, allowing for the increased accessibility to the feeling of success.

Self-efficacy can also be strengthened through modeling. Seeing people similar to oneself succeed by sustained effort allows for the observer to believe that they too possess the ability to carry out tasks which produce successful end-results. Therefore, it is in our best intention to develop a healthy model in which individuals can educate themselves and establish a standard from.

Another process known as “social persuasion” has proved time and time again to be effective in strengthening thoughts of succession. Studies have demonstrated that individuals who are persuaded verbally that they possess the ability to succeed in certain tasks/activities are more likely to show more sustained effort than those who are not and continuously harbor self-doubt. This is especially important for us at About Health because we are always encouraging our followers to reach out to us about any questions or concerns they may have.

In reaching out and providing an effective outlet of resources and assistance to African Americans who are concerned or affected by diseases, we can increase their sense of self-efficacy and consequently lower their risk for obtaining these diseases and/or prevent them from entirely compromising the individual’s well-being.

**Join us at our Fall conference as we discuss health technology for healthier communities! Visit the event page for more info + tickets: http://bit.ly/2b9xOKp**

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