Ho’oponopono: Four Simple Steps To Self-Forgiveness
“Forgiveness is choosing to love. It is the first skill of self-giving love.” – Mahatma Gandhi
Do you hold grudges or have resentment for other people and their actions? Do you find yourself holding onto bad memories or replaying mistakes and regrets over and over again? It can be so difficult to let go of negativity, especially if there has been wrongdoing to yourself or others. However, by holding on to this negativity, you are only stopping yourself from flourishing. With Ho’oponopono, you can learn the art of forgiveness (for yourself and others) to allow yourself to thrive.
What Is Ho’oponopono?
Ho’oponopono is a Hawaiian practise and is deeply rooted in Hawaiian culture. While this practice was typically performed between people in conflict, studies then found that it is an effective practice for self-forgiveness too. It works as both a communication method to promote reconciliation as well as a powerful tool for restoring self-love.
Ho’oponopono translates to ‘making things right’. The repetition of ‘pono’ means to make things doubly right. This could be seen as making things right with yourself and others too.
The forgiveness process is a simple four steps that work incredibly well as a mantra or meditation, making it easy to adopt in your daily life.
The Four Steps Of Ho’oponopono
The four steps of this self-forgiveness practise are;
- Repentance (saying you are sorry)
- Forgiveness (asking for forgiveness)
- Gratitude (being thankful for forgiveness)
- Love (choosing love over anger, hate, resentment)
When people use Ho’oponopono as a mantra, they say;
“I’m sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you.”
These phrases may seem simple, but the mantra is incredibly powerful. The fact that the words are so universal means it is so easy to apply to any form of negativity you may be facing.
Why Is Self-Forgiveness So Important?
You may think those four simple statements are not enough for you to let go of an issue. However, when they are said with intent, studies have shown that it can be incredibly effective in clearing your conscious and unconscious connection to the negativity.
Being unable to forgive (whether forgiving ourselves or others) can cause many issues. It can cause anger, stress, sleep disturbances, depression and physical problems too. However, for some, it is so difficult to let go of the past.
It is important to realise that forgiveness centres around you. The event, or offence doesn’t matter. How you reacted and responded to the event is what you are holding onto. When you start to see your own responsibility in the issue, you can begin to see that you have the power to resolve the issue.
Remember, you don’t need someone else to say they are sorry to you. You can own what you’re feeling and accept that your mind and thoughts have caused your reaction.
It may seem odd to take responsibility for the event, especially if you feel so strongly that someone else was in the wrong. However, by letting this resentment eat away at your happiness and wellbeing, you are letting this event have too much control over your life.
Practising self-forgiveness isn’t condoning bad behaviour. Instead, you are simply clearing your connection to it, so you can take control over your life and choose positivity and happiness.
For some people, it can be easy to forgive others. However, self-forgiveness, for many, is a very difficult concept. We usually judge ourselves more harshly than we judge others. But, it is only when you become right with yourself, that you can become right with others. Self-forgiveness should always be the first step.
How Can Ho’oponopono Help Me?
If you are ready to address an issue, then you are prepared to heal and grow.
Most Ho’oponopono techniques centre around the repetition of the key phrases; I’m sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you. Most practices are effective by repeating this mantra aloud between 8-10 times. This works really well as a mirror mantra, so you really feel like you are saying it to yourself and are accepting this forgiveness.
For people who don’t feel comfortable with this method, there are lots of guided meditations and Ho’oponopono recordings to listen to in a quiet space, or before going to sleep.
Whichever way you choose to practise, the repetition of the words can begin to release any energy blockages in the body, helping to lessen the impact of negative memories.
People report feeling lighter, calmer, and more balanced.
Self-Forgiveness As A Long-Term Solution
While Ho’oponopono can be incredibly helpful when you are facing one issue, self-forgiveness is something that typically needs addressing frequently. So often, we carry around guilt every day. We perhaps don’t forgive ourselves for forgetting to respond to a friend, not completing enough work, not eating healthily that day, or not being in the mood to exercise.
You may not notice, but it’s likely that you criticise yourself, feel annoyed with yourself or insult yourself on a daily basis. How often do you say to yourself; ‘I’m so stupid’, ‘I’m too lazy’, ‘I should have gone for a run’?
All of this shame and blame adds to your negativity. However, when you forgive yourself of these negative reactions, you can start to increase your sense of personal power and make positive changes in your life.
By practising Ho’oponopono regularly, you can start to address all of the minor issues of forgiveness that may be unconscious thoughts.
People who practise Ho’oponopono might find that they start to look deeper within themselves and ask questions such as;
- What am I truly sorry for?
- Where do I still need self-forgiveness?
- Why am I still seeking forgiveness for this issue?
- How do I feel loved?
- What am I truly thankful for?
- Are there any issues that continue to arise that I want to address?
The Benefits Of Ho’oponopono
Ho’oponopono is something that I use with many of my clients who are struggling with forgiveness and self-love. My clients see so many benefits of the mantra including;
Personal Power – Many people feel helpless when they are holding onto resentment. They feel like it is something they cannot control. Often, people are waiting on others to make the issue right, when it is a power that they hold themselves. Self-forgiveness can help them to address the problem and find a new strategy to move forward, where they feel like they have their power back.
Emotional Stability – During a difficult time, practising self-forgiveness helps clients to let go of their own negative thoughts. This meditative technique helps to remove emotions that could be clouding judgement. Consequently, they feel strong, confident and in control of their feelings.
Healthier Relationships – During relationship problems, forgiveness can be difficult. It is common to feel helpless and passive as we rely on the other person to make a situation right. However, Ho’oponopono allows clients to take an active stance and take control of their own feelings and reactions to form healthier relationships by letting go of grudges and resentment.
Do You Struggle With Forgiveness?
All of my blended therapy packages are tailored to suit each individual client, the issue they want to address and the goals they want to achieve. Through a blend of coaching, hypnotherapy, meditation, NLP and powerful forgiveness techniques, I can help you to address any forgiveness issues and provide you with an effective personalised toolkit for the future.
To find out more about hypnotherapy for forgiveness and how I can help, please get in touch for your free consultation. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to book your slot.