Hoʻoponopono and Forgiving Yourself

5 Aug

What response do you have to the phrase, blended family? I am guessing it’s an idea familiar to many of you. Without doubt it’s a large aspect of my life. BeiRose Roomng with my partner, John, means bringing together families. There can be a lot of love in that process, but let’s be honest – there can be a lot of stress and adaptation as well. Today I want to chat a little about being accountable & forgiving to yourself first and foremost, while navigating the challenges of life – and in today’s post, my blended family. How do I do that? Hoʻoponopono and forgiveness.

Hoʻoponopono: An ancient process of accountability that ties into self awareness to help settle, love, be grateful to, and forgive the self. It’s a simple meditation that comes from ancient traditions in Hawaii. There are four phrases that you repeat to yourself in any order as much as needed, over and over:

I’m sorry

Please forgive me.

Thank you.

I love you.

While it might initially feel illogical to say that a small meditation can heal a person’s emotions, you really need to stop and think. Isn’t forgiving yourself a reasonable thing? Isn’t loving yourself a healing trait? It’s simple, I agree, but it also makes all kinds of sense to have this sort of running narrative/meditation/prayer to help you with difficult times.

Forgiveness ties so perfectly into this Hoʻoponopono meditation. At Sister Leadership, we define forgiveness as a spiritual sense of belonging, or “going home“ experienced in our human form. Respect your mind, body and soul by letting go of critical self-sabotage and the expectations of others. See that the bigger picture of the impact of systems, relationships and connections is anchored by exploring inner-peace, forgiveness, self-forgiveness, self-love, joy, inner-wisdom and abundance.

Years back my partner and I decided to live together. We blended our families. I moved into his house with his family and where I had a room of my own. In this family home, patterns had already been established. There was history there, there were boundaries and turf (in a sense). My new presence wasn’t easy to accept, understandably, since those boundaries were suddenly shuffled.

Back then, I felt the tension and reacted pretty strongly to it. Space became a very important element to my sense of safety. Along with a sense of space, there was a question of being “good enough.” Was I good enough for my partner, for this new family? For a while the answer inside myself might have been, ‘no – you are not enough’, and my actions reflected that insecurity.

Thank goodness for Hoʻoponopono.

With it I began to realize that change and acceptance isn’t about the other person. Really, it had to rest within me. And so I began to use the mantra and say the phrases – to this day, I continue to use it, to forgive myself and love myself. Sometimes the mantra is used in my understanding for others, but most often it’s directed inwards toward who I am.


Am I enough? You’re darn right I’m enough. I feel so much of “being enough”, and much of it is credited to the simple and forgiving phrases of Hoʻoponopono.

Why not try it right now? Say it out loud in any order you like, and repeat many times (repeating it makes it feel more powerful):

I’m sorry

Please forgive me.

Thank you.

I love you.

In the news they are talking of wars, showing pictures of fighting countries and hurt children. There is struggle after struggle between political power players that becomes acted out on the streets and between neighbours. When I think of the power struggle that happens within our homes, it is no surprise these things blow up and up and up into such massive heaps of hatred and fighting. Forgiveness for one another will never start until we are able to look inside and forgive ourselves. It starts from inside. Inside your heart, inside your home, inside your community . . .and only then can it spread outward.

We need to fight the war inside us to love, forgive and give thanks for all the beauty we bring to this world. Forgiveness allows us to wipe the windows clean and let the light shine in. CLEAN, CLEAN, CLEAN. There may be many windows in our homes and many cycles of change in our lives. Peace in the world, in my opinion, is possible by cleaning the clutter of conflict in our hearts.

Do you live in a blended family – have you needed to navigate any tensions? I’m asking all you step-moms out there, in particular.

And have you tried Hoʻoponopono? How does it make you feel? I’d love to hear any and all reflections in the comments.

Till next week!



One Response to “Hoʻoponopono and Forgiving Yourself”

  1. MC August 11, 2014 at 20:28 #

    Cam, your transparency is so well illustrated in this post. I’m blessed with not having the challenges of a blended family but I can certainly use Ho’oponopono in a handful of other contexts!

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