One of the essential contributions of the HAKOMI® method lies in its approach to working with a person’s defenses or protective mechanisms. Specifically developed techniques and well-described therapeutic attitudes are central to this approach. 


Each person naturally has protective mechanisms, which develop both early and throughout life, to limit threatening external influences and maintain their own integrity. While a person may want to rid themselves of outmoded defenses that no longer serve them, it is exhausting and difficult to engage in wrestling with these mechanisms. Hakomi therapists take a more innovative, easier and impactful approach by supporting the defense’s underlying purpose. This therapeutic non-violent orientation allows it to become accessible for observation.


With a non-violent attitude, we invite the unconscious into cooperation, which is significant because the unconscious determines what is possible in a session, and what is not. Only when it does not feel threatened in the therapeutic relationship, but rather supported, will it allow engagement with its sensitive information and become available for new [affirming] experiences.