Building a Body of Evidence: From Sensation to Emotion and Psychotherapy

  • Gernot HaukeEmail author
  • Ada Kritikos


These phrases and metaphors refer to the body but in reality they are about the connections we make between the body, thoughts and emotions and social connections with other people. Psychologists and cognitive scientists call these connections “embodiment,” although definition is elusive—as seen by the variability in definition given in each chapter of this book. Perhaps this because there are so many components involved, and researchers and clinicians have tended to focus efforts, sensibly enough, on only one or two aspects at a time. A cursory scan through these definitions reveals some recurring key words, however: body, Self, others, social. So from the perspective of researcher-clinicians, the conceptualisation spans from the physical body to the interaction with others—from morphology to social interaction. Indeed, what has become evident in bringing together this book, is that “embodiment” really refers to a process that produces a network, woven through the fabric of our body functions and cognitions and our behaviour, connecting us to the physical environment and synchronising us with the cognitions and behaviours of other people.


  1. Barrett, L. F. (2014). A conceptual act theory: A précis. Emotion Review, 6, 292–297.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Barsalou, L. W. (2015). Situated conceptualization: theory and application. In Y. Coello & M. H. Fischer (Eds.), Perceptual and emotional embodiment: Foundations of embodied cognition. East Sussex: Psychology Press.Google Scholar
  3. Craig, A. D. (2009). How do you feel - now? The anterior insula and human awareness. Nature Review Neuroscience, 10, 59–70.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Davis, J. I., Gross, J. J., & Ochsner, K. N. (2011). Psychological distance and emotional experience: What you see is what you get. Emotion, 11(2), 438–444.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Grawe, K. (1995). Grundriss einer Allgemeinen Psychotherapie. Psychotherapeut, 40, 130–145.Google Scholar
  6. Hauke, G. (2010). Reinforcing goal commitment: Work with personal values in strategic behavioral therapy (SBT). European Psychotherapy, 9(1), 93–116.Google Scholar
  7. Hauke, G., & Dall’Occhio, M. (2013). Emotional activation therapy (EAT): Intense work with different emotions in a cognitive behavioral setting. European Psychotherapy, 11(1), 5–29.Google Scholar
  8. Hauke, G., Lohr, C., & Pietrzak, T. (2016). Moving the mind: Embodied cognition in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). European Psychotherapy, 13, 154–178.Google Scholar
  9. Koch, S., Holland, R. W., Hengstler, M., & van Knippenberg, A. (2009). Body locomotion as regulatory process. Psychological Science, 20, 549–550.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Koch, S., Holland, R. W., & van Knippenberg, A. (2008). Regulating cognitive control through approach-avoidance motor actions. Cognition, 109, 133–142.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Koole, S., & Tschacher, W. (2016). Synchrony in psychotherapy: A review and an integrative framework for the therapeutic alliance. Frontiers in Psychology, 7, 1–17. Scholar
  12. Merleau-Ponty, M. (1964). The primacy of perception. Evanston, Ill.: Northwestern University Press.Google Scholar
  13. Natanzon, M., & Ferguson, M. (2012). Goal pursuit is grounded: The link between forward movement and achievement. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 48, 379–382.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Niedenthal, P. M. (2006). Embodying emotion. Science, 316, 1002–1005.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Pollatos, O. (2016). The role of the body from the inside for embodied cognition. In Y. Coello & M. H. Fischer (Eds.), Perceptual and emotional embodiment (pp. 262–278). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  16. Schubert, T. W., Waldzus, S., & Giessner, S. R. (2009). Control over the association of power and size. Social Cognition, 27, 1–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Tschacher, W., & Pfammatter, M. (2016). Embodiment in psychotherapy—A necessary complement to the canon of common factors? European Psychotherapy, 13, 9–25.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Embodiment Resources Academy (ERA)MunichGermany
  2. 2.School of PsychologyUniversity of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

Personalised recommendations