Manifesting is the practice of creating your ideal reality by wishing good things into your life. Just sitting around and focusing your mentality can transform your reality. Sounds too good to be true, right? Not exactly – there’s evidence to suggest that shifting your mindset is all you need to transform your life.
Manifestation is a new wellness craze that took over TikTok, but it’s not just a trend. It might conjure up
images of crystals, tarot cards, and new-age spirituality, but the idea of manifesting has been around for
First appearing thousands of years ago in Buddhism, manifestation has deep roots in
the religious world. The Law of Attraction, the idea of directly manifesting something into your life through your beliefs, was first pioneered by nineteenth-century “New Thought” philosophers like
Helena Blavatsky, Thomas Troward and Ralph Waldo Emerson. More recently, the 2006 bestselling book
“The Secret” has become the Bible for modern-day manifestation gurus.
But what exactly is manifesting? Essentially, manifesting is a self-help practice that focuses on using positive thoughts and feelings to achieve a certain outcome. Popular methods of manifesting include
journaling, meditation, vision boards and other tactics to channel intentions. The core belief behind
manifestation is that thoughts and feelings have a direct impact on the physical world.
Sophomore April Thomas was first introduced to manifesting by reading “The Secret” at the same time as her mother, turning them both into manifestation junkies.
Now, manifesting plays a massive role in her daily life. “Belief can turn anything into reality,” Thomas said. “I manifest every day. Through what I see, what I read, my actions, my thoughts… We all practice manifestation whether we’re conscious of it or not.”
But does manifesting work? Is it really possible to create a physical change just by changing your thoughts? While there isn’t direct scientific research backing manifestation, certain psychological concepts support this practice. The “self-fulfilling prophecy” is the phenomenon where an initial
expectation of your own behavior causes you to behave in that prophesied way. Believing that you’ll behave one way in a situation will cause you to behave that way, manifesting that outcome.
But manifestation is a two-way street. Professor of mindfulness in law at the University of Miami, Dr.
Scott Rogers, discusses the power of focusing on an objective with intention. “Placing attention on matters that are affirming, positive, and supportive can, in turn, lead to the generation of affirming feeling states,” said Rogers. “Doing so helps establish the conditions to move meaningfully toward a desired goal.”
Lifestyle coach Pleasance Silicki believes that manifestation is not as simple as just sitting down, wishing
for something, and receiving it within seconds. “[It’s] a lifelong energy, attention, and intention practice,” Silicki said.
In other words — it’s a long-term mindset adjustment. This long-term adjustment of thought can be achieved in many different ways, but Thomas manifests by changing her thought process.
When she reframes her thoughts in an affirmative light, she believes she is inviting positive change into her life. “Instead of thinking, ‘Ugh, I hate everyone,’ think, ‘I can’t wait for better people to enter my life,’” said Thomas.
By reframing her thoughts in an affirmative light, she believes she is inviting positive change into her life.
Rogers also emphasized the importance of mindfulness when it comes to creating tangible changes in
the physical world. “The practice of mindfulness can help us become more skilled at noticing when our mind wanders away from a thought, intention, or desired outcome,” Rogers said. “The more mindful we are amid these moments, the more likely we are to stay on track, think about important subjects and aspirations, and perhaps bring about desired outcomes.”
So how can we use this to our advantage? Silicki recommends taking time for journaling, meditating, walking, yoga and creative practices to create positive mental space to focus on aspirations and desires.
“Focus and control your thoughts on what you want,” said Thomas. “Instead of focusing on what is not
benefiting you or the goal, change what you think to focus on what is leading you towards what you want.”
This also means monitoring the media you’re consuming, the people you’re around and the messages that make up your environment. Are these elements supportive of your goals, your dreams and your ideal self?
So go ahead: create that Pinterest board, listen to that guided meditation and indulge yourself in your fantasies. There’s nothing wrong with a little daydreaming — and, who knows, your wildest dreams may