Originally published 2/17/2021

We know that healing is a process and most often, one that is not linear. Some days we are in a good place about where we are in this journey, but at times, we require more strength and more grace. I still experience these days often, and when they arise, I try to honor where I am in my healing by acknowledging it. If I do not, I risk backsliding into a place where I am operating from the pain of my past. The Ho’Oponopono prayer is a method of healing that can gently guide us back again. This mantra flows as follows.

I’m sorry.

Please forgive me.

Thank you.

I love you.

Ho’Oponopono, in its modern form, is a Hawaiian prayer & method of course correction used with the intention of bringing relationships and emotions back into balance. I love using this with reiki clients and personally during my own healing sessions. It makes room for accountability by helping people acknowledge the emotional pain that develops when we are hurt. Even in situations where we are learning to forgive ourselves, we often leave out the part where we take accountability for the pain, distress, and emotions that develop. This is a massive part of forgiveness, and is necessary for developing empathy for ourselves and others.

I also believe that chanting this simple prayer signals to the universe the willingness to accept what is and move forward in your healing process, thus allowing you to receive support from your higher self. Holding yourself and others in a state of grace can be hard, but it is what gives us the ability to see our own imperfection and humanity. We have all hurt or have been hurt, and there is something about hearing the words “Thank You” in an apology that make it more meaningful. Expressing gratitude and love for yourself or the other party creates a way where we can move forward with the intention of leaving the baggage, resentment, and pain behind.

Consider using Ho’Oponopono in your self-forgiveness journey. Again, it is a process, but each time you say this prayer, you are softening your heart to your own humanity, and giving yourself the opportunity to see what the Divine sees in you. We are often hardest on ourselves, but are we not deserving of comfort and ease? Rather than blocking our own joy and personal growth, signal to the universe that you are ready to move forward in healing and self love.

Write a letter to yourself listing all of the ways your actions have caused you pain. Be bold and honest by writing about the pain and the anger that follows. Ask yourself for forgiveness, giving your higher self the energetic green light to begin creating a way forward into self-love. Thank yourself for being open and willing to receive the apology, and set the intention that you will take what you have learned in this process and apply it to your well being going forward. After all, you are your own best advocate- you show others how to treat you based on how you treat yourself. Finally, say, “I love you” and send your spirit and the universe the highest vibration and intention for healing.

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