Introduction: Exploring responsiveness and attunement in psychotherapy

Jeanne C. Watson, Hadas Wiseman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Responsiveness in psychotherapy is recognized as ubiquitous characteristic of therapist–client interaction and dialogue. Synonyms for responsiveness include openness, alertness, sensitivity, approachability, and having positive reactions toward another, whereas being nonresponsive is described by words such as sluggish, slow, sleepy, unaware, or giving no response. The synonyms for responsiveness convey quality of being fully present and available in the moment, whereas the antonyms convey an absence or lack of attention and disregard for the other. This introductory chapter provides a brief description about the book and its subsequent chapters. The book focuses on therapist and client processes and the identification of specific signals that alert clinicians to shifts in clients' process and behavior in the therapy hour and over the course of therapy to be maximally responsive to their clients. It recognizes that therapists' responsiveness is important to facilitate new emotional learning and reconsolidate emotional memories to promote change in psychotherapy. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2021 APA, all rights reserved)
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe responsive psychotherapist
Subtitle of host publicationAttuning to clients in the moment
EditorsJ. C. Watson, H. Wiseman
Place of PublicationWashington DC
PublisherAmerican Psychological Association Inc.
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)1433834022, 9781433834028
ISBN (Print)1433834014, 9781433834011
StatePublished - 2021


  • *Psychotherapeutic Processes
  • *Psychotherapy
  • *Responses
  • *Social Emotional Learning
  • Clients


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