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Embodied Mindfulness

Hakomi Certification

Hakomi Multi-Level Training will cover the following key points:

  1. How to use personhood effectively to create a healing relationship.
  2. How to keep the focus of attention on present embodied experience.
  3. How to use experiments in mindfulness for assisted self-study and self-discovery.
  4. How to provide a nourishing “missing experience” for the client.

Students must demonstrate a certain level of competency in the above four key areas and in the following elements of the Hakomi method after completion of a Hakomi training combined with extensive practical experience:

  • Ability to sustain and demonstrate an attitude of loving presence in keeping with the principles and spirit of Hakomi
  • Evidence of healthy self-awareness
  • Ability to sustain a focus of attention on present experience
  • Ability to help the client access and remain in present experience
  • Ability to describe, evoke and use embodied mindfulness effectively
  • Ability to track and influence the client’s state of consciousness
  • Demonstration of tracking ability regarding client’s nonverbal expression
  • Demonstration of effective use of contact statement and acknowledgments
  • Evidence of useful hypotheses regarding client’s core beliefs and models of self
  • Evidence of useful hypotheses regarding client’s models of the world
  • Effective use of verbal and nonverbal “probes”
  • Demonstration of effective and appropriate use of “taking over”
  • Demonstration of the ability to recognize and adapt to unconscious needs
  • Demonstration of the ability to imagine, create and implement effective experiments in mindfulness for self-discovery
  • Ability to respond appropriately and effectively to emotions
  • Ability to recognize opportunities and timing to focus on meaning
  • Demonstration of a sustained focus on “what wants to happen here?”
  • Ability to recognize and respond appropriately to a need for a nourishing experience (the missing experience)
  • Appropriately timed interventions to facilitate the transformation of limiting core beliefs
  • Skillfulness in stabilizing/integrating the therapeutic experience
  • Skillful and appropriate completion of the session

Considerable emphasis is placed on the presence and self-awareness of the practitioner, and on the subtle aspects of intelligent compassion and an experimental attitude. The creative use of your personal style is encouraged within the principles of the Hakomi Method and the practice of Loving Presence. The ability to provide both a nourishing and transformational experience in a quietly simple non-effortful manner and to respond appropriately to the nonverbal signals about what is needed are the foundation of a good Hakomi session. The keys, in short, are loving presence, mindfulness, tracking, contact, the effective use of an experimental attitude to assist another in their journey of self-discovery, and the identification and creation of an appropriate nourishing “missing experience”.

The current process for certification as a Hakomi practitioner is as follows:

The applicant needs to demonstrate, either in person or by recorded sessions, skillfulness in the criteria described above to the satisfaction of two Hakomi trainers. This process may require several submissions with supervision over a period of several months to a year or more and occurs following completion of training. This can be accomplished most effectively if the applicant practices regularly with clients and also works with one or more peers getting feedback and peer supervision until there is a consistent enough level of proficiency to submit recordings of sessions. Peer feedback is a way to screen recordings before submission and to demonstrate to the trainers that the applicants and their peers know what a skillful Hakomi session looks like. It is highly recommended that, as a first step, an applicant send a copy of the recording they intend to submit for certification to a peer. The peer is asked to watch the recording and ascertain that it shows the following features:

  1. Loving presence
  2. Maintaining the focus on present experience
  3. Self-discovery using experiments done in mindfulness
  4. Session comes to a place of nourishment

The recorded sessions need to have good audio and video quality and must be accompanied by a written transcript to ensure that everything can be heard and understood. Both the practitioner and the client need to be visible. The recording should include one full session start to finish (usually 40 minutes to one hour) with a written transcript and self-evaluation in the form of a written commentary about the session, describing the session in Hakomi terms.