Beginner’s Guide to Manifesting
For some, manifesting is part of a series of mystical rituals like cosmic ordering; for others, it is simply a way to focus the mind and work towards your goals. Hannah Bullimore tells us more...
By Hannah Bullimore
What is manifesting?
The idea of manifesting comes from the belief that what we think, we are. What we put out into the universe, becomes our reality. For example, if you think negatively all the time you are going to have a negative experience. However, if you choose to be optimistic you can have a happier life.
The idea that manifesting is asking a higher power for help and then leaving that higher power to take control, is a misconception. Manifesting is designed to be empowering – you choose what you want in life, then you take the time to actively think about and put into action the steps to get there.
Manifesting is using our minds to think about what we want – rather than what we don’t want – to consciously create the life of our dreams.
It sounds simple, but manifesting isn’t just thinking about what we want, it’s putting into action the things we know to be true. If you want career success and you set your mind to this, you can’t simply expect this to happen – you now have to think about seeing yourself as successful and figure out how you will get there and what the steps are to achieve it.
Perhaps the process is successful because thinking about our goals each day helps to cut through the noise and distractions of everyday life, and focus the mind on what we want and how we can get there. It’s nothing mystical; it’s simply the power of a well organised and determined mind.
Where does manifesting come from?
Signs of manifesting, or creating the life you want through your thoughts, can be found in a number of traditions across the world. In the Buddhist tradition, Buddha said: ‘All that we are is a result of what we have thought’.
The Law of Attraction and manifesting were first mentioned specifically in Helena Blavatsky’s 1877 work entitled The Secret Doctrine in which she suggested that our thoughts and identity are what define who we are and what we are capable of. She emphasised the individual ability to shape this and change our own potential.
At the time, these ideas were controversial and seen to be part of the Occultist movement. Nowadays, there are many variations of manifesting, including those without a connection to spirituality, which can be used by anyone to enhance their life and focus in on their desires and goals.
Manifesting for Sceptics
The mystical connections of manifestation can put some modern minds off trying this practice. However, manifesting can be a powerful wellbeing tool.
Personally, I see manifesting as a process whereby we look inwards and ask myself ‘what is it I really want and how do I get there?’. As well as a process of self-exploration, it’s a practice in positivity, helping us to keep a positive mind frame so that we can attract more happiness into our lives no matter what life may have to throw at us.
For sceptics, manifesting can be seen as a highly organised process of setting goals and working on personal growth. For those who want to connect with the spiritual side of the practice, The Law of Attraction offers a way to do just that.
Making manifesting part of your habits and rituals, can be tricky as there are so many different approaches to the practice.
To help you along, here are some of the best-loved books on manifesting and the art of attraction:
This well-known book by New York Times best-selling author Bernstein is a look into the divine and spiritual practice of manifesting abundance, happiness and security. This is also a really great audiobook on audible.com
Arguing that spirituality is about happiness, not faith, this workbook guides you through reconnecting with spirituality and manifesting happiness.
One of the formative books of the modern manifestation movement, this classic helps readers to imagine and manifest their greatest desires.
How does manifesting work?
For some, manifesting is a spiritual practice whereby whatever you put out into the universe attracts back to you.
In many ways, we can view manifesting as focusing the mind on what we want and thereby our subconscious focuses on this too. Surely, the more time you spend working towards your goals, thinking about your goals, planning for success, the more likely you are to succeed.
Manifesting can take many forms, from positive affirmations to mantras, to writing down what it is you hope to achieve, to planning for success with goal setting for the present, near future and distant future.
Setting daily intentions can be a great way to bring manifesting into your life.
For a more in-depth look at how to manifest, we have the HLN manifesting journal with a series of rituals, a goal-setting journal outline and a visualisation meditation. Download it here.