When we first started Wild Ginger, we wanted to avoid using the word ‘manifestation’. Although it is a new-wellness practice, it has also become a misunderstood buzzword with a whole range of TikTok tutorials and Twitter threads, appearances in the upcoming genre of spiritual memes, and plastered all over fast-fashion pieces. As we try to offer an achievable and realistic approach to health and wellbeing, the New-Age Internet trend has made manifestation out to be more magical than it really is, but here’s the quote that made us change our mind:
“Manifesting isn’t dreaming and wishing, manifesting is deciding and acting”.
Believe it or not, there is a science behind manifestation – psychology to be specific. It doesn’t involve wish-granting powers or spiritual energy, it’s as simple as believing that we are all capable of making even our wildest dreams come true. Read on to go beyond the buzzword and behind the power of positive thinking and habitual action!
What is manifestation?
If you look up the meaning of ‘manifestation’ in a dictionary, it’s defined as “a sign of something existing or happening”. This is often misconstrued and instead believed that if you merely focus on something, it will magically appear. What makes this popular belief harmful is that it doesn’t take into account those with anxiety, depression or other mental health diagnoses, as well as victims and survivors of trauma and diseases. Your thoughts are just thoughts – thinking about something won’t bring it into existence. We can’t control everything either – you are not to blame for your trauma.
What really is manifestation? Taking action to convert your ideas into a reality. It’s a holistic strategy for achieving your goals that includes transforming your mindset and behaviours. Here’s how to use it in a sentence: Your success is a manifestation of your hard work and discipline.
What is the science behind manifestation?
A self-fulling prophecy is a belief or expectation that an individual holds about a future event that manifests because the individual holds it (Good Therapy, 2015). For example, if you think you’re going to perform well during a presentation, your positive attitude towards your presentation may make that prediction come true. How? You may unconsciously work towards affirming this belief by feeling motivated to practice your presentation, thus resulting in a confident performance, focusing on positive feedback and not dwelling on any negativity.
The Placebo Effect
In psychology, a self-fulfilling prophecy was proven with The Placebo Effect (Isaksen, 2012). Psychologists discovered that during scientific studies or clinical trials, some participants still showed improvements even when they weren’t receiving working treatments – their beliefs affected the treatments they were given.
How to start manifesting?
First, remember that thinking about something isn’t the same as doing it. Use that thought to help define your goals and as a daily reminder of your dreams – this should just be the starting point, either written down in your journal or represented through imagery on a vision board. In order to really manifest your dreams, you must develop a routine around these ideas, form affirmations to help you focus, and you’ll have reinforced the habit of working towards achieving these goals!
What Is A Vision Board?
A vision board, also known as a dream board, is a collage of pictures and words that best represent your dreams and goals. It is a visualisation tool that helps you clarify, centre, and focus on what solidly matters to you. A common misconception of the vision board is that it works like a genie, whereby you will magically achieve whatever you have on your board. Rather, it works as a reminder of all the actions you should take in order for you to reach your goals.
Why Is It Effective?
The most effective way to achieve your goals is to keep them foremost in your mind – this way, you’re always aware of them, and it will have you unconsciously optimising your actions to move closer to them. This is where a vision board comes in, to prompt you to visualise your ideal life on a daily basis.
Visualization works! Not in the “hocus-pocus” kind of way, but by activating the subconscious part of your brain and programming it to become more aware. It allows you to notice the available opportunities and resources that you may have previously failed to.
This article proves the power of visualisation and how it has brought success to many Olympic athletes. You can also watch this video of Jim Carrey talking to Oprah Winfrey about him visualising success and then gaining it.
Create Your Own Vision Board
Now that we’ve covered the basics of this powerful tool, here comes the fun part – creating your own vision board!
- Develop a list of your goals and dreams. Ask yourself questions like:
- What do you want more of in your life – love, money, happiness, health?
- What job or promotion do you want?
- What kind of people do you want around you?
- What type of partner do you want to attract into your life?
- What habits do you want to incorporate into your daily life?
- Where do you want to live?
- What material things do you want to own – a new car, laptop, phone?Note: The key here is to be specific. If you’d like a new car, note down the model of the car and the colour that you want.
- Find pictures from the internet, magazines, photographs – anything that inspires you, including affirmations, inspirational words and motivational quotes. You may also want to consider adding photos of yourself and your loved ones smiling and being happy. This will have your brain associating the things that you want with the things you already have, generating good feelings.
- After you’ve collected all the materials you’d like to add to your board, you can either follow the traditional method of pasting it on a board, or just create a collage online and set is as your wallpaper! The point is to make sure that it is placed somewhere you can see every day.
To quote Oprah Winfrey, “If you can see it and believe it, it is a lot easier to achieve it”. A vision board will help, but it is not enough to make your dreams come true – you need to take the right actions to create the reality that you want to live in.