Active Change in Psychodynamic Therapy: Moments of High Receptiveness

Am J Psychother. 2015;69(1):65-86. doi: 10.1176/appi.psychotherapy.2015.69.1.65.


This article presents the concept of "moments of high receptiveness" (MoHR or "Momentos de Alta Receptividad"), which is derived from the concept of "experiential coupling" ("Acoplamiento de Experiencias") proposed by Bleichmar (2001). Experiential coupling recently received empirical support by the work of Schiller and colleagues (2010). We will also show the conceptual placing of moments of high receptiveness with respect to the developments of Stern and colleagues (Stern and et al., 1998; Stern, 2004). In order to achieve both objectives, we focus on various clinical vignettes stressing the differences in repercussions of the technique. We describe use of stimuli for active evocation, explain how to identify moments of high receptiveness, and review ways to take advantage of these moments. Lastly, to minimize the risk of iatrogenic symptoms, we examine the role of therapists and some features of the therapeutic process when using this technique.

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Concept Formation*
  • Humans
  • Professional Role
  • Professional-Patient Relations
  • Psychoanalysis*
  • Psychotherapeutic Processes*
  • Psychotherapy, Psychodynamic / methods*
  • Self Concept*
  • Time Factors
  • Unconscious, Psychology