The secret to getting what you want in life is by simply manifesting it.
Manifesting is the internet’s latest wellness obsession; celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Gwyneth Paltrow are doing it. Ariana Grande even wrote about the phenomenon in her song just like magic.
According to Google Trends, “how to manifest” has been increasingly searched in the last five years. Vox also described “Shut up I’m manifesting” memes, which went viral in 2020, as among the most defining memes of that year.
Manifesting is all about turning your dreams into reality by embarking on a journey of self-improvement and self-love. But what exactly is manifesting, and how exactly do you manifest something into your life?
When did manifesting start?
Manifesting is not a new concept – it dates back to the 19th century as part of the New Thought spiritual movement, which emphasised the significance of positive thinking in influencing the material world. It highlights the unity and peace of the mind, body and universe.
In 2006, Rhonda Byrne released her book and film called The Secret. She says, “we are what we think, consciously and unconsciously.” Put simply, this means whatever we desire and attract into our lives is a reflection of what is in our minds.
The rise in popularity can also be attributed to the pandemic. We collectively saw the world turn to chaos and had no control over it. During this time, we were given the opportunity to focus intentionally on what we value the most. With the world being tremendously unpredictable, we are now unable to navigate what to do next in order to get ahead, so we feel powerless and overwhelmed. As a result, taking matters into our own hands by willing positive change into our lives with the help and comfort of some higher power or mystical energy sounds super appealing because at this point, we’ll do anything we can.
What is manifesting?
Manifesting is the idea of bringing personal goals into existence through aspirational practices – thought, visualisation, belief and action – and aligning them.
Self-development coach, manifesting expert author, mental health ambassador, qualified yoga teacher, podcast host, Instagram agony aunt and self-love activist, Roxie Nafousi, denotes ‘manifestation’ as the “ability to use the power of your mind to change and create the reality you experience.”
In her 20s, Nafousi suffered from severe depression and addiction which kickstarted her manifestation adventure. She further elaborates, “it’s not something you do – it is something you are. A way of living.”
Accordingly, she envisioned a future for herself and put in the energy, effort and intention to make that vision of self-worth and self-love into a reality.
Roxie also claims that “manifesting is a practice that literally benefits every area of your life by empowering you to become the very best version of yourself, embody the person you want to become and unlock the infinite potential you have to create the life of your dreams.”
Therefore, not only do you get to be the best version of yourself, but by manifesting, you can tap into what you really value in life and build on your inner sense of self.
According to Mayo Clinic, by thinking positively, signs of depression and anxiety are reduced, and the ability to cope with stressful situations is enhanced.
What can I manifest?
Literally anything – from your career, future partner, money, health, a pet…ANYTHING.
However, you have to remember that you don’t just get to think about what you want and get it in an instant – you have to put in the hard yards. For example, a study published in Basic and Applied Social Psychology found that tennis players used a visualisation exercise to imagine their goals of improving their performances and winning a match. This experiment proved that they were more successful when they did not merely visualise these goals but put them to action.
belief + action = manifestation a.k.a. living the life you want to live
But why does manifesting not work?
Ask yourself – what is blocking my vision? Physical obstacles? Is it self-doubt?Insecurities? Feelings of unworthiness? Look within yourself. Your mind is your only limit.
Besides, visualisation is only half the battle – you will not see any results if you don’t act. You must remember that manifestation is not the same as merely making a wish and blowing out the candles.
Set time aside to think about the steps you can take to reach your goals by yourself and slowly build them into your routine. Recognise that you have power over your internal experiences and action by observing the nature and quality of your thoughts.
For instance, if you want to find a job, think optimistically about where you see yourself in the future. Then, work on your resume and attend networking events.
So, how do I start manifesting?
There are a variety of manifesting methods to choose from – find which technique works for you and your life.
It might be the 369 method that was made famous on TikTok. This method requires you to write down what you want 3 times in the morning, 6 times in the afternoon and 9 times at night for a minimum of 33 days.
This technique helps to enrich your manifestations by allowing you to consistently pay attention to what you desire. As a result, your brain is more likely to pinpoint what it is looking for within your thoughts and everyday life.
It might also be by journaling, either in the morning and/or night or when you’re feeling overwhelmed and want to re-envision your manifestations.
Even a meditation or exercise like yoga warrants manifesting. These methods are incredibly cathartic and enable you to release emotions and give you a space to really yearn for what you want.
However, if you want to start small, it can be as simple as speaking to yourself, your future self and the universe out loud.
As you can see, the possibilities are endless.
While there are no right or wrong ways to manifest, here are some ways to enhance your manifesting experience:
Get a clear vision by removing any doubts or fears that come into mind.
Remind yourself that you deserve to be happy and fulfilled. Think about who you want to become, how the future you will feel and the things that they will do daily.
There will be tests. Overcome them.
Manifesting is a journey – there will be so many different obstacles that will come your way. Find the strength, confidence and courage within yourself to conquer them.
Instil trust within the universe and that whatever you desire will come eventually in your own time. There is nothing to lose if you are genuinely and habitually working on bettering yourself.
Cliché but oh so true. Count your blessings and the blessings that are yet to come, and make it a habit. Dr Joe Dispenza says that “practising gratitude for five to ten minutes a day can produce significant epigenetic changes in our health and body.” This shows that gratitude is not just about changing the way we feel, but how we behave and the life will live.
Exercising gratitude can also remove negative emotions of envy and comparison and instead turn them into inspiration and motivation instead. Being nicer to people, the world and the universe at large will enrich your manifestations.
This can simply be done 5 minutes before bed in a notebook or on your phone. Write down a few things you are grateful for and get closer to achieving your goals. Prompts like The Five Minute journal can also help with this step.
Try taking your manifestation practice to another level
Don’t be afraid to engage in practices like scripting, which involves repeatedly writing down your manifestations or involving essential oils, candles and tarot cards. If these all seem a bit too woo-woo for you, try to get crafty and make a vision board – whether it be on Pinterest or printing out images you resonate with and pinning them on a cork board. Use your imagination and make your manifestation process, yours.
There’s nothing better than feeling like you’ve helped yourself take a step closer to your goals and desires.