It seems as though a new manifestation method pops up every other week (thanks, #ManifestationTok), making it hard to know where to even begin, not to mention decipher between what’s legit and just BS. And if you’re trying to get ahead of your goal-setting for 2023, it’s prime time to nail down the practice for some serious manifesting, because there are incorrect ways to attract what you want in life–it’s not as cut and dry as “ask, and you shall receive.” So I grilled Kathleen Cameron, manifestation expert, coach, and author of Becoming The One, to set the record straight and dish out her tried-and-true hacks to live our best lives. On tap: manifesting your dreams.
1. Transform your beliefs
Manifestation is not a one-and-done situation. You’re always manifesting, whether you realize it or not, and it starts with your thoughts. “The first step in manifesting is becoming an observer of your own thoughts,” explained Cameron. “What thoughts and beliefs are limiting and how can you move them to be empowering? That’s how you manifest!” For example, Cameron broke down the thought process of manifesting your dream home: shift your beliefs from “I’ll never live in a house that big” to “I’d love to live in a house that big” to finally, “Wow, look at me living in a house this big!”
The same goes for any doubts you may have about the power of manifestation. “Really opening the veil of skepticism and opening your mind to a different possibility is what is going to help you change the course of your own life,” Cameron affirmed. “Your thoughts have created the day you lived today. If you want to change your experience, you need to change your thoughts. So, what if you change your thought about manifestation?”
2. Find an approach that works for you
From journaling and vision boards to positive affirmations and the 369 method, the world is your manifestation oyster. So how do you determine which manifestation technique is the crème de la crème for you? “It comes down to the type of person you are and the type of things you enjoy doing,” Cameron stated. “It’s important to find an approach that works for you and makes you feel joy, excitement, and alignment. Choose that one.”
Whether you’re new to manifesting or looking for a fresh start, Cameron recommended starting with journaling. By putting pen to paper, you get in tune with your thoughts and become aware of any judgments or limiting beliefs that are blocking you from your desires. Because you’re letting your thoughts flow, you can consciously identify any that are coming from a scarcity mindset versus an abundance mindset. Then, you can work on reframing those lack-based thoughts into abundant thoughts (read: focusing on what you do have).
There’s one caveat to journaling: Cameron warned that writing down what you want over and over doesn’t actually create consistent sustainable manifestations. It may bring about the one thing you’re going after here and there, but in order to experience a true outer transformation, you have to start with your “inside world.”
3. Do the inner work
No matter how you approach manifestation, you’ve got to do a deep-dive into self-reflection and self-discovery (AKA inner work), and peel back the layers. “It’s about how you see yourself that leads to the manifestation,” expressed Cameron. “Doing it ‘incorrectly’ is when you change nothing about yourself and try to manifest something different. It all starts with you!” Cameron suggested asking yourself, “Who am I?” to uncover what you want to change about yourself.
Trying to attract something into your life without working through your fears, negative emotions, and limiting patterns is the most common manifesting mistake Cameron sees. Bottom line: If you’re the same person you’ve always been with the same thoughts, actions, and feelings, you won’t get different results. “The different result comes from being a different version of yourself,” she said. “Manifestation is a transformation.”
4. Be the dream version of yourself
It goes without saying that we all have something we want to bring to fruition, whether it’s a soulmate, job, or home. Cameron’s #1 tip to attracting whatever you want? “You need to be the dream version of yourself,” she attested. “Everything is an attraction, you attract what you are, and you attract the energy that you’re in. The first step and the most important thing to do is to make sure you’re operating on a frequency of vibration that is a match to the thing you desire. If you want to feel and attract this big love into your life, you have to be loving now.”
Reflect on and identify who you want to be (read: your highest self): Where are you living? What do you do for work? What are you wearing? Who are you with? Then, start showing up as if you are already that person. Approach every situation and decision—no matter how big or small—as the best version of yourself. The best part? Evoking the feeling of your future self will help you align with and become her.
5. Supplement with visualization
PSA: Your manifestation method doesn’t have to be fancy or on-trend. Cameron said visualization is the most powerful thing you could do, recommending five minutes in the morning and five minutes at night. “Visualize yourself in a scene where the manifestation has happened, then apply the feeling of the wish fulfilled,” she said. In other words, picture what you’re seeking and your highest self who already has it, down to the micro-details. “The fastest way to manifest what you want has more to do with the vividness of the image you have,” said Cameron. The winning combination is visualizing what you want, the feeling of it being fulfilled, and the belief that you have the ability to obtain it.
Good news: If you’ve ever created a vision board, you’re ahead of the game. By gathering words, images, or objects that represent the future you want in a tangible form (physically or digitally) will not only help you focus on your dream life, but also activate the good vibes, connections, and resources needed to realize it. If vision boarding isn’t your cup of tea, you can try listening to a guided meditation, taking a few minutes to imagine your future (best) self first thing in the morning, or saying daily affirmations (think: “I am strong, I am confident, I am motivated. My life is full of abundance.”)