Hakomi Psychotherapy is an experiential, body-centered psychotherapy designed to use a mindful focus on the body as a way to open to understanding how we organize our experiences, including core beliefs, memories, and feelings. The therapeutic relationship is key as the therapist provides a loving presence in which the client feels safe enough to drop into a mindful exploration of how the body has organized itself around various material.
Oftentimes, the body leads us to the unconscious material that operates below the surface and is usually outside of normal consciousness. The unconscious material that surfaces allows us to become more aware of how habits and patterns of thinking and behaving have been formed. In the context of a safe, therapeutic relationship, this material can be observed and studied in a non-judgmental way, and we become more aware of what areas need loving attention. We can then construct mini experiments, in mindfulness, to provide new and different ways of responding, to explore new possibilities, in the moment, so that the range of possibilities are expanded to include a wider range of responses to life.
As new experiences happen, new thoughts, new perspectives, new behaviors become possible. There are usually opportunities to provide the client with ‘corrective experiences’ once we identify what the ‘missing experience’ is. Oftentimes, the ‘missing experience’ goes back to childhood, which gives us the chance to access younger parts, who hold the memories and experiences that need healing. We work with these parts to help transform the pain of the original context, so that all parts can be free to open to the full spectrum of what life has to offer.
I have received training in Hakomi Psychotherapy which allows me to use this wonderful method, when appropriate, during sessions with my clients. I use the basic principles of loving presence and mindful exploration often. Working from an attachment perspective, I incorporate Hakomi’s essence of creating relational healing by focusing on providing healthy and reliable connections with my clients, which serves as an overall healing agent in my work.
For more information about Hakomi Psychotherapy, please feel free to ask, or refer to their website, www.hakomiinstitute.com.