Manifestation is the “ask, and you shall receive” of modern-day goal-setting. Wondering how to manifest something? It’s simple. First, determine what you want and why you want it. If that’s to click “submit” on your final student loan payment, great. If you want to manifest sipping Aperol spritzes on the shores of Santorini by the time your next birthday rolls around, also great. There’s no limit to what you can manifest into existence — if you’re willing to put in the work.
“Manifestation is more than just thinking about something and making it come to life. It’s more than just positive thinking,” says Kathleen Cameron, a life and manifestation coach. “Manifestation is a lifestyle.”
Ask for what you want, and the universe just might listen. More importantly though, you’ll listen. If you believe your goals will come true, you’re that much closer to cheersing a spritz in Santorini.
Whether you tap into manifesting through journaling, meditations, or a vision board is up to you. However you incorporate manifestation into your life, though, make it a daily practice. “Everything you want and need must become part of your everyday life,” says Cameron. “You must consciously see your desires in your emotions, job, thoughts, actions, and core values every single day.”
How Manifesting Something Works
Manifesting isn’t complicated, but don’t be fooled into believing a stork will deliver a pile of cash — or a handsome man, or a restored relationship with your estranged sister — to your doorstep if you think about it enough. It’s not that easy.
Think of manifesting like envisioning your goals into reality. When you bring your intention and attention to whatever you’re hoping for in life, you’re more likely to take the baby steps to bring your goals to fruition. That could be a hot date for happy hour, adding a dream client to your roster, a new puppy, you name it. There’s just one rule: Don’t beat around the goal-setting bush.
“You are the only person who knows what you want, whether it’s a new job, a new partner, a better car, or a more healthy lifestyle,” says Cameron. “Whatever you desire, you have to make your intention as specific as possible.”
Got a goal in mind? Read on for five essential steps for how to manifest something.
To ask the universe for what you want, you need to know what you want — exactly what you want. Forget vague daydreams about a new car. Be specific. “Picture the exact car you want,” says Cameron. “Is it an Audi A7? What color is it? Does it have a gold interior?” Set a deadline for when you want the keys in your hands and hum a song you’ll listen to with the windows down. “The more clear you can be on your intention, the more likely you are to manifest it,” Cameron adds.
When it comes to manifesting, seeing is believing. Vision boards can be a powerful way to see your goals in one place. Place your vision board somewhere you’ll see it often, as a daily reminder of, “Yes, I do want to sock away extra money this month so I can visit Julie in Amsterdam this fall.” If scrapbooking isn’t your style, create Pinterest boards instead, and scroll through them regularly. And don’t forget to utilize a visual you see perhaps hundreds of times a day: your phone background.
Write It Down
“Putting pen to paper helps lock our desires into memory,” says Song Atthajaroon, an intuitive life coach and energy healer. Maybe you scribble “I want to run a half marathon in October” in a notebook 50 times every day, or frame a hand-written list of your goals on your bedside table. If you’re trying to manifest a raise, write a script of how you want that conversation with your boss to go. “The process of writing down our goals is similar to creating a contract with the universe. We want to see this goal through and we are asking the universe for assistance,” Atthajaroon says.
Envision Living Out Your Goals
Visualization meditations make your aspirations feel all the more real. “Envisioning that we have already attained our goal speeds the process of manifesting to become a reality,” says Atthajaroon. Say you want to buy a house. Sit quietly and close your eyes. Then visualize where you’ll hang your favorite painting, how it feels to make your grandma’s lasagna recipe in the kitchen, and meeting your neighbors for the first time.
Manifestation isn’t a passive activity. “You are the sum of what you surround yourself with, and how you work toward your goals,” says Cameron. If you’re hoping to spend a year in Japan, take baby steps to make that move happen: Research visa options, scroll apartment rental websites, buy a travel guide to Tokyo, and ask a friend-of-a-friend who lived there to get coffee. You’ll be one step closer before you know it.