gratitude practice

Most of us have heard of the law of attraction, the principle stating that we attract experiences and circumstances that are of the same frequency as our thoughts and beliefs. 

If we put out positive thoughts, we receive positive results.

Likewise, if we send out negative energy, we attract less than desirable events and situations.

Also called the law of manifestation, this principle highlights the power of our thoughts and the great capacity they hold to influence our lives.

Through the law of attraction we uncover the power of manifestation, as well as specific techniques that teach us how to manifest our dreams.

From manifesting love to manifesting money, there are a wealth of manifestation techniques we can use to bring about positive change in our lives. 

This universal law of attraction has the potential to shift how we view the world and what is possible within it.

The following 14 manifestation techniques are practices we can explore to help us achieve our dreams.

When practicing, ensure that your mind and heart are fully open to change.

Witness any subconscious beliefs that might hold you back from authentic transformation, and then soften them as you delve further into your practice.

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Effective Manifestation Techniques

1. Vision Board

A vision board, or a dream board, is a crux in the art of manifesting.

This is a great place to begin your manifestation practice as it will help you to hone in on what the big picture looks like.

Vision boards are like scrapbooks.

They contain words and images that convey the energies and values you wish to experience in your life.

Supplies you’ll need will vary according to your personal artistic flair, but typically you will want to have: a large sheet of heavy weight paper, magazines, flyers, other print materials, scissors, glue, and writing tools.

Ensure that the print materials you have at hand are aligned with your values.

Once you are ready to craft your dream board, take a few moments to mindfully reflect upon what it is you yearn to experience in this life.

Consider the place you yearn to call home, the people you wish to have in your life, and the activities you wish to pursue.

Allow your mind to expand as far as possible as you begin scrapbooking its words and images onto paper.

2. Intention Journal

Another powerful manifestation technique comes from the intentions we set.

Sometimes, we find ourselves entrapped in dissatisfaction without realizing we haven’t consciously and affirmatively expressed our intent for something different.

An intention journal can be used once a day, once a week, or once a month.

If using it once a month, you might choose to make it a ritual by lining it up with the new moon.

The energy of the moon at this time is said to be ideal for planting seeds of intent.

In your journal, make a list of three to five things you intend to do within the day (or during the following day if you are writing at night).

Your intentions can be either specific or broad, such as “I intend to write 2000 words of my book in the morning” or “I intend to embody confidence and courage throughout my day.”

Ensure your intentions are aligned with your highest values.

3. Belief Assessment

We don’t often realize it, but our mind contains a whole web of subconscious beliefs that direct our lives – even in ways that might be contrary to what we think we yearn for.

For example, while we might deeply aspire to perform on stage, we might hold a competing belief that we are untalented and unworthy of success.

Our beliefs can powerfully impede our highest dreams, so by shining a light on them we call them into question.

A beliefs assessment (and subtle transformation of these beliefs) can be done in a journal or during meditative reflection.To practice, follow these three simple steps:

  • Reflect upon what your heart most longs for.
  • Consider the subconscious beliefs that inhibit your heart from achieving this longing.
  • Put into words what a heart-supportive belief might be, repeating it slowly as a present-tense affirmation for three to five minutes.

4. Gratitude Journal

If you’re wondering how to manifest your dreams, turn your attention to the abundance that is already within and around you.

The universe is unlikely to provide us with additional blessings if we are unable to appreciate the ones we already have.

While it can be easy to get caught up in ideas of what we are lacking, a conscious shift in our focus inspires positive thinking and future manifestations.

A gratitude journal is one way to become more aware of the abundance you are already blessed with.

You might consider making this a nightly practice.

To do so, take a few minutes before bed each night to write down five to ten things you are grateful to have embodied or experienced during the day.

If bedtime journaling is difficult for you, you might substitute this practice with a moment of appreciative silence before dinner.

Use this as an opportunity to thank the universe for all that you are blessed with at present.

5. Bedtime Reprogramming

Our subconscious mind directs 95% of our lives.

That makes it the primary driver of our experience.

Dr. Bruce Lipton has done much research on how we can reprogram the subconscious mind.

It turns out that the moments before falling asleep are a key opportunity for making change.

Lipton explains that our subconscious mind is in a perfect state to download new information when it is functioning at the vibrational frequency of theta.

Though this frequency is most predominant during our first 6 or 7 years of life, the brain also slips through this frequency as we transition from the waking state to the sleeping state (and vice versa).

We can use this transition to our benefit, listening to subliminal recordings and affirmations to create a sort of self-hypnosis​. 

As we gently fall to sleep, the brain will take these positively inspired recordings and begin to rework them into our belief system.

6. Letter From Your Future Self

Another practice that supports the law of manifestation is the ‘Letter From Your Future Self’ technique.

This technique requires you to take some time to reflect upon what it is you truly long for, and to then pen a letter to your current self – from your future self.

You might decide to write it as if you are one year into the future, five years into the future, or ten.

It is up to you.

Close your eyes and imagine yourself having achieved your dreams in that time period.

Begin to write as if you have embodied and experienced everything you long for.

As you write this letter, fill in your current (or past) self about what you have achieved.

If you long to build your dream home in the country side, include details of the newly-built home in your letter.

If you yearn to share your insights and skills with your community, include details of your successful workshops and lectures in the letter.

Fold the letter, tuck it into an envelope, and write the appropriate future date on the front.

Keep it in a safe place where it can be recovered and read when the day arrives.

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7. Manifestation Affirmations

Positive affirmations are another powerful way of reprogramming the subconscious mind.

Once we’ve explored our conditioned beliefs and are ready to move beyond them, we can begin to instill empowering beliefs in the form of manifestation affirmations.

The affirmations you choose should resonate strongly with your highest self.

Create your own or consider any number of the following:

I am worthy of receiving my heart’s desire.​

I trust the universe and its goodness.​

I steer my life in the direction of my highest dreams.​

I am continually learning, growing, and evolving.​

I open my heart to the world with trust and faith.

Manifestation affirmations should always be spoken in the present tense.

You can repeat your positive affirmations (either a single sentence or a few) during meditation or as you drift to sleep.

8. Outside the Box

Thomas Jefferson is often quoted as having said, “If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done.”

When it comes to manifesting love, manifesting money, or manifesting anything else that you yearn for, this quote rings true.

‘Outside the box’ is an attitude.

It invites us to step beyond our comfort zone, inviting new opportunities into our lives.

We can embody this attitude by committing to stepping outside of our comfort zone (or our metaphorical box) at least once per day.

Prioritize steps that enhance the sorts of skills that are aligned with your aspirations.

For instance, if you yearn to live off the land one day, see where you might make small steps each day to be more local or self-sufficient.

This might entail asking a neighbour for help versus calling an outside company.

It might mean learning to grow tomatoes on your balcony or taking a class to learn a new skill.

Whatever you yearn for, take small steps in that direction.

Manifestation requires us to also take conscious steps in the right direction.

9. Prayer Practice

Asking the universe for help is an often overlooked manifestation technique.

Whether we’re adverse to things that feel religious or are simply unfamiliar with prayer, there are many reasons we might not have asked for universal support yet.

Developing a prayer practice helps us to set our intentions with the universe – or with our highest selves.

To explore this, find a quiet space where you will be undisturbed for five to ten minutes – and simply start talking.

This doesn’t have to be religious or even spiritual.

You can talk to your highest self, to a deity of your choosing, or to the universe.

It also doesn’t have to be overthought.

Simply open your heart to finding answers from something beyond your rational, controlled mind – and you might be surprised at what opportunities and insights are presented.

10. Positive Networks

As briefly mentioned in our eighth technique, manifestation is not a passive sport.

It requires us to meet the universe halfway, bringing our best efforts to the forefront.

Part of the active half of the equation has to do with the environments we find ourselves in – and the people who we engage with in these environments.

Positive, inspiring networks of people are of huge benefit in our efforts at manifesting our dreams.

In one way or another, we become just like the people we hang around with – and they become more like us.

So, if we are serious about manifesting our dreams, it is important to ensure we have like-minded souls in our circle.

This does not mean we need to cut all ties with the rest of our network.

It is simply an invitation to be more conscious of the people we are around, the environments we work in, and the conversations we are a part of.

11. Permission Practice

It might come as a surprise, but one major reason why many of us do not achieve our dreams is because we haven’t given ourselves permission to do so.

Growing up, we might have developed beliefs that say success if for someone else, or that happiness is vulnerable and therefore dangerous to pursue.

However, unless we are willing to give ourselves permission to succeed, we likely won’t get to where we wish to be.

A permission practice is often a hidden player in the art of manifesting, but it’s one we shouldn’t overlook.

Take a moment to consider whose permission you might be waiting to receive.

Are you hoping someone who has already succeeded will permit you to be all you can be?

Or, are you waiting for permission from a parent, a partner, or society?

As adults, the only person or entity who can authentically grant us permission is ourselves.

We can explore this as a manifestation meditation by reflecting upon these questions and then mindfully repeating any of the following affirmations:

I permit myself to be who I truly am.​

It is safe for me to express my authentic self.​

I am open to receiving the abundance of the universe.

12. Act the Part

You may have heard of the phrase, “Fake it ‘til you make it.”

When it comes to manifestation, there is some truth to be found in these words.

While we can’t (and shouldn’t) fake who we are, there is something to be said for harnessing the courage to embody the self that rests dormant within.

For instance, if we yearn to manifest success in business, we can promote this outcome by taking the risk of raising our hand to ask questions or share ideas with colleagues.

Acting the part requires courage and vulnerability.

However, in the words of Brené Brown: “Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity, and change.”

13. Inner Child Embrace

Another powerful arena to explore if you’re wondering how to manifest your dreams is the realm of the inner child.

Within each of us is the inner child – the young, vulnerable aspect of ourselves that yearns deeply to be heard, loved, and understood.

This inner child holds our most engrained beliefs and perceived limitations, so working with this aspect of ourselves can help us to overcome our own blockages.

You can work with a trained professional on this or mindfully explore it on your own.

If gently delving into this as your own guide, you can explore by:

  • Envisioning the child within. What does he or she believe? How does he or she carry themselves? What are the deepest longings of this soul? Take some time to compassionately explore this.
  • Embracing the inner child unconditionally. Can you sit with this child’s fears, wishes, and uncertainties? Can you love and nurture this aspect of yourself, offering it the wisdom and love it needs to move beyond its own limitations? Spend a few minutes in this space.

Inner child work takes time.

As we witness this aspect of ourselves, we start to see through our own limitations.

This sparks new insights that help us to manifest our dreams.

14. Higher Self Visualization

Last but certainly not least, a higher self visualization can empower our inner world to embody the truth of who we are and the qualities of our most inspired dreams.

There are a variety of ways to do this, but the following manifestation meditation is one beautiful and expansive way of connecting with what it is we long for and who we yearn to be.

To practice, read through the instructions before settling into a quiet place for the visualization.

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Meditation For Manifesting Your Dreams

  1. Begin by coming into a comfortable seated or lying down position. Ensure that your neck is aligned with your spine and that your body is both relaxed and comfortable. The body should still feel strong, grounded, and centered.
  2. Close your eyes as you tune into the breath, watching its natural pace and rhythm as it moves through you. Spend one or two minutes grounding yourself into this space through the breath.
  3. Now, take a moment to envision yourself in a bright and open room. There is nothing on the walls or floor. All that is present are windows and a single door.
  4. Imagine for a moment that there is a knock at the door. Envision yourself going to open it; and, as you welcome in the person on the other side, you realize that it is the image of your higher self.
  5. Note the way this person carries themselves. Observe their posture, their movements, and their facial expressions. Spend about one minute just watching them as they move throughout the room.
  6. This higher self comes to stand before you and snaps their fingers. As you imagine this snap occurring, begin to watch the room transform into the home or workplace of your higher self. Consider where they live or work, what and who they are surrounded by, and any other important features of their environment.
  7. Spend two or three minutes witnessing the qualities, energy, and actions of this version of you. Consider the virtues they embody with ease and grace.
  8. Allow their radiance and vitality to enter your heart space, causing the mind to soften and a gentle smile to spread across your face. Then, let the image of them dissolve as you remain in the presence of their energy.
  9. Come back to this visualization as often as you require. Before bed is a great time to practice. The images will be more readily absorbed by the subconscious mind as you drift to sleep.

Feel free to explore a single practice or as many as you can fit into your life.

The more you practice, the more powerful the results will be.

If you’re wondering how to manifest anything, these are tools that will have you heading in the right direction.

Open your heart to the vast possibilities before you as you allow your dreams and your reality to collide.

Read next: How to Manifest Your Dreams Into Reality