Originated in the mid 1970s by renowned author and therapist Ron Kurtz, the Hakomi Method is a body-centred form of therapy that is based on five different principles. These are known as first, the mind-body connection, then mindfulness, non-violence, organicity, and unity-core, with each of these therapeutic principles being comprised of different beliefs, images, and neural patterns all created by the brain.
All of these things come together to create our attitudes, beliefs, perceptions, behaviours, and habits, shaping everything we feel and do. Each and every response we have, whether it be in terms of spirituality, sexuality, power, personal freedom and a sense of belonging, are all governed by our core material.
The Hakomi Method
The practice of Hakomi begins with building a working relationship between client and therapist in order to maximise the end results including mutual respect and the complete cooperation of the unconscious mind. Once the relationship has been established, the Hakomi therapist helps the client to focus on how their own core materials may be shaping their personal experiences.
A state of consciousness referred to as Mindfulness is invoked, which is characterised by a heightened sense of sensitivity and focus of attention, as well as freedom from judgements. Through what are called “experiments”, clients are instructed to pay careful attention to the responses within themselves, acknowledging their inner thoughts which are then studied, then evaluated, and transformed as needed.
A Hakomi therapist aspires to create positive change within the therapeutic setting, eliciting a mindful, creative, and spontaneous experience. All of this allows the client to think and articulate new beliefs, thoughts, and choices, taking what they’ve learned and implementing it into their lives.
How Hakomi Works
Practised amongst groups of fellow learners, or in a one-to-one meeting, or also in a therapeutic workshop environment, Hakomi can be effective in a variety of settings and is suitable for situations of crisis as well as for purpose of psychological maintenance. However, Hakomi tends to evoke its full potential in regards to personal growth, in terms of both our own thoughts and actions as well as our interpersonal activities, allowing us to move beyond our preconceived limitations.
Also effective for a host of everyday instances and occurrences, Hakomi is adaptable and suitable for supporting whatever needs may arise, whether it be matters of business and finance, or one’s personal life, such as matters of parenting skills, or personal growth and enrichment.
Studying to Practice Hakomi
The art of Hakomi is referred to as a self-study type of therapy, meaning Hakomi therapists, unlike traditional therapists, do not study the client for the purpose of correcting or improving a certain problem, but rather work to help the person study themselves instead. Because of this, the Hakomi therapist is duly trained to convey a non-judgemental and open-minded curiosity when working with clients.
- Emotional Nourishment: This refers to discovering mental blocks that exist preventing us from finding viable ways of accepting love, kindness, and caring from others, and in turn, emanating the same back.
- Non-Verbal Awareness: With this particular component of the Hakomi Method participants work on learning how to read and understand other’s non-verbal messages which are conveyed by their facial expressions, body language and posturing, as well as the tone of voice and the way one carries themselves.
- Practising Loving Presence: When practising Hakomi, people learn how to create and maintain a compassionate state of being through specific procedures that they then impart on others.
- Quieting of the Mind: Hakomi participants are also taught how to calm their minds and keep them calm while sustaining a balanced, centred state of being.