Awakening Clinical Intuition: The Neurobiology of Embodied Response

Norton Series on Interpersonal Neurobiology, 2014

Foreword by Allan Schore

Exercises to help mental health practitioners at all levels of experience recognize gut feelings and produce deep therapeutic change.

Gradiva Award, 2015

2015 Gradiva Award Nomination for Best Book

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Read a sample chapter adopted for The American Journal of Play here →

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When immersed in therapy with a patient, clinicians are guided not only by conscious, explicit dialogues and intellectual investigation, but also by natural flows of emotion, energy, and body-based information—hunches, gut feelings, behavioral impulses. These natural flows are the foundation of clinical intuition, the right-brain means by which therapists perceive and respond to relational patterns and non-conscious signals during psychotherapy.

In Clinical Intuition in Psychotherapy, Terry Marks-Tarlow bridged art and science to explain the essential role of clinical intuition in transforming traumatized brains into healthy minds. Here, Marks-Tarlow walks through a series of exercises to help therapists at all levels of experience hone their sensitivity to their non-conscious resources and apply intuition effectively in therapy. With exercises in breathing, mindfulness, meditation, play, perspective-building, and much more, Awakening Clinical Intuition is a practical workbook for eliminating mental clutter, getting in touch with right-brain, embodied responses to psychotherapy, and cultivating a unique, intuitive style. Features include client-ready applications and two hours of accompanying audio.


Endorsements & Reviews


“I am delighted to see a book which endeavours to demystify such an intangible, evasive yet crucial concept in psychotherapy by linking it to the empirically grounded science of neurobiology and some increasingly popular eastern philosophical concepts. . . . [The] exercises provide a roadmap for our own venture into awakening and cultivating clinical intuition.” — Journal of Mental Health

“Clearly written and accessible, the book makes an invaluable tool for not only developing and honing clinical intuition as a skill that enhances therapeutic effectiveness in the actual moment-to-moment work of psychotherapy but also for the continued self-care and personal growth of clinicians and care givers themselves.” — American Journal of Play

“This workbook is ideal for those new to the concept of intuition as well as those already familiar with and using intuition in their lives and practice. Marks-Tarlow will stretch your awareness, and she offers new experiences to share with your patients.” — Nancy Eichhorn, Somatic Psychotherapy Today

“In her book, Awakening Clinical Intuition: An Experiential Workbook for Psychotherapists, Terry Marks-Tarlow does not try to teach us to be intuitive, but rather to cultivate the nascent skills we already possess. . . . Whether you are a junior clinician just starting your career or a therapist with years of experience but an interest in furthering your intuitive sense, this workbook is worth exploring. . . . Her book opens the reader up to exploring our own intuitive whisperings, helping us to become more receptive to the subtleties of the clinician-client interaction.” — PsychCentral