Certification as a Practitioner

To be a certified Hakomi practitioner, you must complete 45 days of study and demonstrate competency in the Hakomi method as explained below.

Requirements for Certification

Certification as a Hakomi practitioner requires all of the following:

  • Completion of basic training, which requires 15 days of study with any certified Hakomi Network trainer worldwide
  • Completion of advanced training, which requires an additional 30 days of study with any certified Hakomi Network trainer worldwide
  • A student shall have demonstrated, during his/her training, a body of work that consistently shows the development of personhood and the skillfulness in specific elements of Hakomi to the satisfaction of two trainers in the Hakomi Education Network. This demonstration typically includes one or many sessions that demonstrate competency. The first certifying trainer should be the trainer you have studied with the most. The second certifying trainer may be from outside your training group.

Preparing for Certification

If you want build skills toward certification, follow these general steps:

  1. Complete multiple coached sessions.
    You can get coaching in any of the following ways:

    • Attend a scheduled training that has been specifically designed for coaching. This is the easiest way to get coaching.
    • Attend a scheduled training weekend and ask the trainers in advance if they can arrange the training so that you have a full session where you are coached. Sometimes coaching can fit into a training weekend but it depends on many factors, such as the planned curriculum, the level of participants, and the number of participants, teachers, and trainers.
    • Arrange your own opportunity. For example, you could hire a trainer to attend a session where you provide the location and client.  Or you could arrange a session by video link.
  2. Confirm that you have completed 45 days of study.
    Before starting to seek certification, you must have completed 45 days of study.
  3. Record multiple sessions and get peer feedback on the sessions.
    The most effective way to prepare for certification is to work with a small group of peers getting feedback until the group agrees that there is a consistent enough level of proficiency in Hakomi. Peer supervision is an excellent way to screen recordings before submission and to demonstrate to the trainers that the applicant and his/her peers know what a skillful Hakomi session looks like.

Submitting a Demonstration of Competency

Note: Before you start, be aware that certification may require several submissions of competency over a period of several months to a year.

To submit a demonstration of competency in Hakomi, follow these steps:

  1. Complete a full session with a client.
    Follow these guidelines for the demonstration session:

    • Perform the demonstration session and record it. The session can occur at a scheduled training or privately.
    • Identify a client either by providing your own volunteer or by requesting a participant in a scheduled training to be a client.
    • If you want to do the session at a scheduled training, ask the organizers in advance if the training schedule can be arranged so that you have a full session. If the organizers agree, clarify the client, location, and timing.
    • Obtain agreement from two trainers that they will evaluate one of your live or videotaped sessions.
    • When you record the session, test your equipment in advance to make sure that it adequately captures the audio and video. (Microphones inside a laptop might not be strong enough to pick up soft voices.) When you are making the recording, make sure that both the client and therapist are visible during the entire recording.
  2. Write your own evaluation of the session.
    Include the following commentary in the self-evaluation:

    • A discussion of the session in general – your state of mind, your interventions, outcomes of experiments, and the phases of the session
    • What beliefs were brought to consciousness
    • What you feel confidence with, where you might have tried something different, what you need to practise
  3. Submit your demonstration to the trainers for evaluation.
    For example, give the trainers a DVD that contains the files for the self evaluation and the recording.

The Evaluation of a Demonstration of Competency

A demonstration of competency as a Hakomi practitioner is evaluated by two certified Hakomi trainers in the Hakomi network.

Approach to Evaluation

Here is the evaluators’ approach:

“We place an emphasis on the presence and self-awareness of the practitioner, and on subtle aspects of intelligent compassion and an experimental attitude. We encourage the creative use of your personal style 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-efforting manner and to respond appropriately to the nonverbal signals about what’s needed are the foundations of a good Hakomi session.”

“The keys, in short, are loving presence, mindfulness, tracking, contact, the effective use of an experimental attitude, and the creation of an appropriate nourishing experience.”

Criteria for Certification

As a formal evaluation, trainers look for competency in the following elements of the method and offer feedback in each criterion:

  1. Ability to sustain and demonstrate an attitude of loving presence in keeping with the principles and spirit of Hakomi
  2. Evidence of healthy self-awareness
  3. Ability to sustain a focus of attention on present experience
  4. Ability to help the client be aware of and stay in present experience
  5. Ability to describe, evoke, cultivate and use mindfulness effectively
  6. Evidence of the ability to track and influence the client’s state of consciousness
  7. Demonstration of tracking ability re: client’s nonverbal expression
  8. Demonstration of effective use of contact statements and acknowledgements
  9. Evidence of useful hypotheses re: client’s models of self and of the world
  10. Effective use of verbal experiments
  11. Demonstration of effective and appropriate use of physical experiments
  12. Demonstration of ability to recognize and adapt to unconscious needs
  13. Demonstration of the ability to imagine, create and implement precise experiments in mindfulness
  14. Ability to respond appropriately and effectively to strong emotions
  15. Ability to recognize opportunities and timing to recognize and experiment with beliefs
  16. Working with the child state of mind
  17. Demonstration of a sustained focus on “what wants to happen here?”
  18. Ability to recognize and respond appropriately to a need for a nourishing experience (the missing experience)
  19. Ability to recognize the dynamics of a system and to “jump out of the system”
  20. Evidence of providing a suitable environment and appropriately timed interventions to facilitate the transformation of limiting core beliefs
  21. Demonstration of skill in stabilizing/integrating the therapeutic experience, including the appropriate use of silence
  22. Demonstration of skillful and appropriate pacing and completion of the session

When this evaluation is complete, you will receive it in writing, along with a decision about whether the evaluators were satisfied with your proficiency or they recommend further practice. If the evaluators were satisfied, they will provide your certificate.