Chronic heart failure is associated with debilitating symptoms, diminished quality of life and frequent hospitalizations. The literature suggests that effective everyday self-care decision-making can improve heart failure outcomes. This article focuses on the qualitative portion of a study of self-care decision-making in community-dwelling individuals attending a heart failure clinic. Semi-structured interviews conducted with 11 participants identified influences that enhance or impede self-care practices and their behavioural responses to them. Content analysis was used to examine predisposing attributes and enabling circumstances described in Connelly's Model of Self-Care in Chronic Illness. These interactive factors were either facilitators or barriers to self-care. The importance of individualizing patient teaching plans and frequent monitoring of factors likely to facilitate self-care were pivotal nursing implications that emerged from this study.