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Wellness

What Is Manifestation, And Does It Work?

9 Mins read

The people who believe in the power of manifestation believe in it for a reason. Positive thinking and positive affirmations aren’t entirely new concepts, but is it really possible to “manifest” what you want in your life, just by having the right attitude and visualization techniques? Manifestation is a self-help concept which prompts us to visualize what we want in life, speak it out loud, and both embrace and consistently vocalize our goals.

The idea of manifestation is that by focusing on a specific goal or desire, you can essentially “will” something into existence. It ties in with the power of positive thinking, and the law of attraction. Although at first, the concept of manifestation may seem similar to wishful thinking, the right forms of manifestation can have a useful and positive impact on how you live your life.

Recently, manifestation has seen a massive surge in interest, with searches for “how to manifest” increasing steadily on Google over the past 5 years. Particularly during the pandemic, people have become more drawn to the idea of the power of positive thinking, and how they can use manifestation to regain control over their lives.

The question is, does manifestation actually make a difference, and if so, how can you use it effectively in your own life?

What is Manifestation? An Introduction

Manifestation is the idea of bringing something you truly desire (but don’t yet have)  into existence using aspirational thought, affirmations and visualization. The concept of manifestation has roots in the New Thought spiritual movement, which suggests our thought patterns and beliefs can influence what goes on in our real, external world.

Manifestation is also closely related to the “law of attraction”, which suggests the energy we put out into the world influences what we receive in return. For instance, if you constantly assume something bad is going to happen, you’re more likely to experience bad things happening, also known as a “self-fulfilling prophecy”. However, if you take a positive approach to life and your goals, you increase your chances of success with the power of positive thinking.

The process of manifestation involves various manifesting practices, from mindfulness and visualization, to meditation and affirmations. There are even mathematical elements associated with the idea. Numbers such as 1111 and 444 are defined as “angel numbers” sent by the universe, while certain sound frequencies are considered by some to be better at manifesting certain outcomes. 

Some people manifest their goals by making a wish or repeating a mantra when the clock strikes 11:11am or 11:11pm. 

While some aspects of more extensive manifestation practices can seem a little unusual, such as repeating a phrase a specific number of times, the idea of manifestation mostly breaks down into a type of visual goal setting. 

When we manifest a goal or desire, we create a positive vision for our future, and we place energy and intention into making the vision a reality. This is a similar process anyone might go through when attempting to find love, land their dream job, find their dream house, improve their financial situation, lose weight, or achieve a host of other goals in life.

Why is Manifestation Becoming More Popular?

As mentioned above, the concept of manifestation has grown increasingly popular in recent years. Some experts believe the rising tend of manifestation could be a result of the pandemic. The last couple of years has changed the level of control many of us feel we have over our own lives. It has also given us an opportunity to explore our real priorities, and begin investing more in various types of self-care.

The spike in interest may also be connected to various celebrities and social media trends. Oprah has spoken regularly about her belief that visualizing herself as an actress improved her chances of being in the movie “The Color Purple”.

Rapper Drake has also claimed he only owns his mansion in LA because he saved an image of the house on his desktop many years before too. At the same time, hashtags such as #Manifestation across social media have drawn more attention to examples of people using manifesting as a technique for positive thinking and self-exploration.

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Creative young woman drinking coffee at cafe table and writing in journal her thoughts and ideas

Examples of Manifestation

There’s no one-size-fits-all way to “manifest” something into reality. Everyone does it their own way. Some people do follow specific rituals, such as writing a desire down 33 times for 3 days, or lighting a candle every night for 40 nights while making the same wish out loud. Others simply write their manifestation wish into a journal on a regular basis, to keep their mind focused on their goals. 

Some examples of manifestation could include:

  • Manifesting Love: When attempting to manifest love, you could write the statement, “I am happy my soulmate is coming my way” in your journal every day, even if you haven’t met someone yet. You might also use meditation as a way of visualizing what life with this person might look like.
  • Manifesting a beautiful home: When manifesting your dream home, or a home that’s a better environment for you than what you currently have, you might write or speak statements such as, “This year, I will master the art of decluttering and I will become a creative and skilled home decorator.” You might even visualize the type of organized home, or the type of home decor you wish to have.
  • Manifesting wealth: When trying to manifest financial wellness, you could use statements such as “I attract wealth and am comfortable with my financial situation”. A good strategy with manifesting money is trying to keep your goals realistic. Focus on achieving the financial outcomes you need to be happy and comfortable, rather than just collecting wealth.
  • Manifesting guidance or direction: If you’re struggling to find your place in life, you could use the concept of manifestation to guide you in the right direction. For instance, you may use the phrase “I embrace my path and where it guides me”. During your day-to-day life, visualize how it looks and feels to have a clear direction in mind.

Does Manifestation Work?

The reason why people claim manifestation works, is because it has worked for them. It doesn’t really matter that there’s no hard scientific evidence proving positive thinking alone can actually ‘will’ things into existence. The lack of scientific evidence doesn’t mean manifestation doesn’t have any benefits. From a goal-setting perspective, manifestation can be extremely valuable.

There’s no harm trying manifestation to see if it works for you, because it’s safe to try and it’s also free to try.

If you’re wondering if manifestation works, remember that in general, positive thinking (which is what manifestation is, at its core) does come with many life benefits. 

First of all, a positive mindset in life will help you attract positive people into your life. Research also shows that positive thinking, one of the core concepts of manifestation, can help us to improve our mental health, cope better during stressful situations, and even take more risks in life. This means we’re more likely to explore opportunities that bring us closer to our goals.

Visualization can also be extremely useful. One study found tennis players using visualization to improve their goals were more likely to be successful.

While manifesting and visualizing your objectives won’t automatically make your wish come true, it will give you a sense of focus which keeps you pushing towards the right targets. If you’re invested in making your vision a reality, you’re more likely to engage in actions which will move you in the right direction.

Even your outlook on how a situation will play out can have an impact on the outcome. One study found when teachers started the year with more positive expectations of students, they were more likely to improve throughout the year.

Aside from giving you more focus toward your goals, manifestation also helps you to set goals more effectively. The process involves thinking carefully about what you want in life and setting the correct priorities. These priorities can then guide your decisions, and direct the outcomes you can potentially achieve.

Engaging in manifestation on a regular basis helps you remember your goals and live with more intent.

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Pros and Cons of Manifestation

The process of manifestation is simple enough.

For the most part, it follows the same rules of the law of attraction, suggesting what you put out in the world will influence what you get back. Rather than simply hoping you’re going to achieve something, you tell yourself you are going to reach a specific target, providing self-affirmation and motivation.

Manifestation helps you pump yourself up and believe in yourself, which is crucial for achieving your goals.

Research shows people with a more positive outlook are generally more productive, creative, more cognizant of their goals, and better at solving problems.

However, there are some potential issues or ‘cons’ some people believe are associated with manifestation. For instance, if the odds are stacked against you in achieving a certain goal, attempting to “manifest” your wants into reality could lead to negative emotions and depression. You can’t be out-of-touch with reality, thinking some very unrealistic desire can simply be manifested into existence. Failing to manifest something could lead to self-blame and guilt among people who are unable to achieve their goals.

For the most part, manifestation is healthy, but be sure not to get down on yourself if it doesn’t work. It’s possible all you need to do is start using the technique of manifestation in a more practical way.

How to Use Manifestation in a Practical Way

Manifestation can be a valuable wellness trend for some, but it won’t appeal to everyone. The key is to avoid placing too much weight on your ability to manifest something into existence. Instead, it’s helpful to simply concentrate on a plan for more positive thinking.

Some of the best ways to improve your chances of success with manifestation, and stay practical include:

Acknowledging the reality of manifestation:

Manifestation isn’t the same as simply making a wish. Thinking of the concept of a form of magic negates some of the potential for truly manifesting positive changes in your life. Rather than just saying something out loud and expecting it to come true, it’s important to use your manifestation goals to guide your behavior and intentions.

For instance, if you want to manifest a healthy relationship with food, you may start by being more mindful about what you eat, and watching your reactions to food carefully. This will help you to understand how certain negative thought processes are influencing your eating habits.

Write down your goal and speak them out loud

Affirmations and positive chants are commonly used in psychology to help guide beneficial thought processes. Speaking your goal out loud every morning is a great way to keep yourself focused on what you want to achieve, and embrace a positive mindset. Saying a goal out loud can also help you to recognize whether that goal is really what you want.

Writing your intention out in a journal is another form of self-affirmation. You can close your journal at the end of each day with your affirmation to remind you of where you want to go and what you want to achieve. You might even place goal markers on your calendar to help you focus on achieving targets within a specific time.

Create a meditation ritual

Meditation is a powerful tool for both relaxation and positive thinking. Bringing manifestation into your meditation practices could be an excellent way to give your thought processes more direction. For instance, you might close your eyes for a few minutes each day and imagine exactly what you’re going to see and feel when you reach your goals.

Meditating on your goals will help you to feel closer to them, and should help you to stay focused if you begin to lose your way. Meditation is also excellent for problem solving. You might come up with creative ways to overcome some of the roadblocks which are preventing you from achieving your targets.

Surround yourself with positivity and positive people 

It’s difficult to maintain a positive outlook if you’re surrounded by negativity. With this in mind, it might be worth removing some of the negative energies in your life.

People who bring you down or suggest you won’t be able to achieve your goals could be harming your motivational levels. If you can’t avoid these people entirely, it might be helpful to mentally question their statements whenever they make you feel bad about yourself.

Surrounding yourself with positivity also means questioning the negative beliefs you might have about yourself and your future. Make a conscious effort to challenge any self-limiting beliefs you might have. Try replacing some of the negative visions you have about how things might turn out with more positive alternative scenarios. Believe in possibilities and potential.

Can Manifestation Really Work? The Bottom Line

Whether manifestation works for you or not all depends on your outlook, and how you choose to use the practice. If you embrace manifestation as a method of setting positive goals and staying focused on your targets, then it can be extremely valuable. It can help you to envision what you want more clearly, and push yourself towards your targets. 

Daily manifestation can also help you keep track of and remember your goals, which increases the odds of reaching them.

On the other hand, if you treat manifestation similarly to making a wish on a falling star, it might not be as effective. The key to successful manifestation isn’t just willing something into existence, but also following the path you need to make achieving that goal a real, concrete possibility. Manifestation must be done in combination with action-oriented steps toward those goals. 

Rebekah Carter
105 posts

About author
Rebekah is a committed copywriter and freelance content producer with a history in the technology, marketing, and health sectors. She’s worked with leading brands around the world, and is constantly searching for new ways to expand her knowledge, and skills.
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