These days everyone and their grandma is talking about manifestation. But what is manifestation? Does it actually work?
In this article, I answer these questions and break down the WORST manifestation advice I’ve ever heard. Because if knowledge is power… then you need to make sure you have the right knowledge to inform your decisions.
What is manifestation?
In simple terms, manifestation is defined as “bringing something tangible into your life through attraction and belief.” The idea is that you visualize what you want, believe it’s possible for you, align your thoughts and emotions with that belief and then wait for it to appear.
However, there are a lot of confusing and misleading teachings out there that promote doing nothing (as in taking zero action) and letting your desires come to you. This version of manifestation is not only inaccurate, it’s also toxic because it keeps people stuck — we will discuss this in more detail below.
Does manifestation work?
100%. Absolutely. Without question. I am living proof. There are countless goals I have achieved via manifestation techniques I’ve used including this blog (which doesn’t write itself, friends 😜). All of the visions I’ve brought to life have involved far more than merely mapping out a vision board and waiting around for life to fulfill my wishes.
Instead of looking at manifestation as the “easy way to get what you want” think about it as a tool you can leverage to attract the right people, opportunities and circumstances into your life.
The worst manifestation advice I’ve ever heard
1.) Think happy thoughts (all the time)
All of us have something called an emotional guidance system. The purpose of this system is to help us navigate AND experience life without getting stuck.
As such, it’s not only impossible but, also unproductive to think happy thoughts all of the time. We’re human beings having a HUMAN experience. That experience includes feeling and processing our emotions — even the negative, unpleasant ones. If we ignore our emotions and try to substitute how we *really* feel with fluffy thoughts, we aren’t going to make meaningful progress in life.
Rather than trying to police your thoughts (and thereby missing out on actual life), instead, focus on being present with each emotion as it comes. When you’re feeling bad, ask yourself why. Aim to always get to the root issue so you can resolve it. Not only will this help you effectively process your emotions, but it will also empower you to get to where you want to be in life sooner rather than later.
2.) Sit back and let your dreams come to you
Ah, there’s nothing like sitting back and doing nothing. Who doesn’t love living in mom and dad’s basement, playing video games all day, and just waiting for those dreams to fly through the window?
This is some of the worst advice ever. It stems from the idea of using visualization as a manifestation process. And I want to be crystal clear — visualization DOES work. That’s why top athletes and actors use it before a big competition or performance. But, these high achievers are also continuously working on and refining their talent. Visualization is part of the process, but not the ENTIRE process.
Spoiler alert: Your dreams aren’t going to happen unless you take action. There isn’t a magic carpet that will sweep through the basement window and take you to your happily ever after.Spoiler alert: Your dreams aren't going to happen unless you take action. Click To Tweet
3.) You created this reality
I believe (in theory), this advice is well-intentioned. But, in practice it lacks empathy and comes across as uber judgemental.
The reality is, we can all improve our lives — starting with the choices we make daily. From what we eat, to how we spend our time, who we hang around and so forth. These decisions influence the quality of our lives. The good news is that we can always work to make better decisions and improve our lives. The not so good news is no matter how hard we try, we don’t control the Universe.
To suggest a person is responsible for everything that has happened to them or someone they love is not only wrong, it’s also cruel. For example, someone I follow on Instagram recently lost a child to cancer. She prayed everyday. Spoke positive affirmations. And did everything in her power to help her daughter heal… but her daughter still died. And it wasn’t her fault. There’s nothing she could have done to prevent this scenario, and suggesting otherwise is extremely unhelpful and crass.
Ultimately, it is possible to manifest your dreams. But don’t follow all of the advice you read. Do research. Practice the different techniques. And make sure you figure out what you want, work through limiting beliefs, and create a plan to reach your goals!
What’s the worst manifestation advice you’ve ever heard? Let me know in the comments below!
P.S. Want to make a vision board that actually works? Take my bestselling online course on vision boarding. I walk you through how to get clarity, mistakes to avoid, and how to create a plan of action to help you realize your dreams.
About Antasha Durbin: Antasha is a spiritual writer and life-long student of the universe. Her website, cajspirituality.com, is dedicated to simplifying the spiritual experience and making it attainable for everyone. Follow her for free, easy-to-digest, and highly actionable advice on spirituality, mindfulness, and empowered living.