A Beginner’s Attempt to Embrace Manifestation and Meditation

Nina Ortiz, Reporter

Every individual has their own goals, hopes and dreams in life. No matter how big or small these may be, there is always hope that one day they could become a reality. As a personal challenge and experiment, I attempted to welcome some new practices into my life to potentially experience the results.

Manifestation is the idea of turning these dreams into a reality through a process of attraction. Some may be familiar with the practice of manifestation, as this practice has recently become more popular on social media. In order to practice manifestation, one must get rid of a negative mindset and clear out every distracting thought. The best way to do this is through meditation. Meditation is a set of techniques used to create a sense of self-awareness and observe thoughts or feelings in a safe space. These techniques are practiced all over the world, and continue to be used for religious or spiritual purposes. 

George Mumford, an Elite Performance and Mindfulness expert, shared his thoughts on why meditation is beneficial.

¨Having a mind, body and soul, if they aren’t connected, are we really experiencing life to its fullest potential? Meditation helps to connect the three, thus increasing performance in life,¨ said Mumford. ¨Science has proven that meditation increases neural connections, happiness, self-awareness, immune system functionality, concentration and impulse control while decreasing stress, anxiety, depression, cortisol levels and blood pressure.¨

After researching these practices, my weeklong journey to test these practices began. 

The first step was to find a safe and quiet space to meditate. This is very important, in order to keep the mind at ease during the process. After finding the space, it is essential to sit in a relaxed and comfortable position. One should allow the hands to rest on the lap or knees, while keeping the back straight using proper posture. The neck tends to become very stiff after straightening the back, so meditators should allow the neck to drop with the chin tucked in slightly. 

The best way to meditate for beginners is through a guided video or audio. I decided to use videos found on YouTube, as there are a variety of videos offered. 

The first steps in preparing for manifestation are clearing the mind and cleansing the space of practice. To cleanse the space, I used incense sticks, which are made of raw aromatic materials. One may also use holistic methods such as sage to eliminate all negative energies. After cleansing, the necessary materials are a manifestation journal, writing utensil, and a positive mindset. To start the journaling process, begin with a reflection. Reflecting on the day, week or even month is very beneficial for pouring out overwhelming thoughts dancing around in the head. 

Another good idea is to create a gratitude list. This list can consist of everything one is grateful for. Being specific is key when writing in a manifestation journal. After showing gratitude, thank the universe. When thanking the universe, it’s good to focus on the bigger picture of gratitude. Lastly, set a manifestation focus. People should think about a specific manifestation focus, and form the correct sentence structure, such as using the words, “I will” before adding the specific manifestation. 

A positive mindset, and believing that the manifestation will come true is the most powerful part of this process. After fully understanding the process of meditation and manifestation, my journey began. 

The first day consisted of mostly research. I spent more time researching than manifesting or meditating. I had to make sure I was doing everything correctly to feel that it would work. I also made sure to turn my phone off, steering away from any outside distractions. I decided to start the first day, with a 10-minute meditation. The 10-minute meditation felt a lot longer than I anticipated. 

After meditating, my mind felt empty, my body tired and my thoughts vanished. It was the perfect set up for manifesting. I then began the manifestation process. I felt it was easy for me to write each step, and reflect on my day. It felt calming to put everything on pause and just focus on journaling.  

After a long and exhausting day of school, I went into my second day of meditation, hopeful for a moment of relaxation. I decided to do a 5-minute meditation instead, as 10 minutes was too long for a beginner like me. After I meditated, I felt less stressed and all of my anxious thoughts went away. In general, journaling felt easy because of how repetitive and organized it was. Although time consuming, I was excited to see if manifesting changed my mood or lifestyle.  

On the third day, I began noticing a change in my mood. I felt more motivated to do my schoolwork, and accomplished more tasks. I believe the mediation calmed my anxiety and created a comfortable environment for me to properly organize my daily duties. I wanted to try a 10-minute meditation again, because I felt more focused this day. Although I believed I could focus for the entire 10-minute meditation, my attention veered into the opposite direction. After this day, I knew that the 10-minute meditation was not for me. I began to journal, and started to notice how long it felt. I noticed it felt like more of a burden than something I enjoyed doing. 

On the fourth day, I tried meditating in the morning before school. I felt it was necessary to find the best time of day for me. Meditating in the morning made me feel prepared to start my day, and felt less time-consuming. I also tried to manifest during the morning, as I thought journaling before doing my tasks would feel less stressful. Once again, journaling felt exhausting and repetitive.

On the fifth day, I meditated for 5 minutes during the night. On this day, I felt tuned into my soul, vulnerable and connected emotionally. This night felt different from the rest because I saw an image during my meditation. Although it sounds crazy, I envisioned a picture. The guided meditation led my wandering mind into experiencing an image connected to this feeling of hope and longing. 

 This short glimpse of what my mind created caused me to become emotional after my usual meditation process. It felt scary, exciting and confusing all at the same time. 

Amber Yang, Novato High’s Restorative Justice Specialist and Wellness Coordinator, shared her thoughts of the emotions that can accompany meditation.

¨When we are fearful, we can get into the habit of being defensive and closed… which blocks us from finding ways to creatively address the issues we’re facing. By becoming more present, we become more relaxed. When we are relaxed, we can access our creativity and openness to life,¨ said Yang. ¨We also might be surprised that we cry when we meditate, which is healthy and often means that our body is releasing tension and stress. Grieving can be extremely useful in letting go of the tension our body carries.” 

Yang perfectly described the emotions I felt during that deep meditation. I wasn’t too sure how I was able to place myself into that vulnerable mindset, but after that day I was not able to do it again. After that day, I realized just how much power meditation can have. The manifestation on the other hand, felt the same. I grew tired of it, and did not discover any noticeable effects after doing it for multiple days.  

On day six, I decided to try my meditation in the early afternoon. I meditated for 5 minutes, and didn’t notice an overwhelming change in my mood. I still felt stressed, and doing my meditation in the afternoon felt like a waste of time. I was so focused on getting my schoolwork done, that meditating during my day didn’t feel like a priority. Since manifesting is also very time consuming, I was frustrated when doing it. It was not beneficial for me mentally, or emotionally, to be upset when doing something that was supposed to make me feel more relaxed. 

The last day of my meditation and manifestation process was rewarding. By the end of the week, I discovered that meditating and manifesting during the night was most beneficial for me.  My final day of meditating was short and sweet. After a 5-minute guided meditation, I felt calm and relaxed. Since this was my final day of manifesting, I felt overwhelmed with joy to write in my journal for the last time. 

I enjoyed the experience of learning these new skills. I found it interesting how connected I felt to my mind spiritually, and how I could clear my mind so easily. I discovered a new love for meditation, and a dislike for manifestation. At the beginning of the week, I thought manifestation would have been easier and more enjoyable. Toward the end of the week, I discovered that manifesting was the total opposite for me. Manifestation is such a popular trend right now, raising my expectations. It just felt exhausting, uninteresting and overhyped. I will definitely continue to meditate, but my manifestation journey has ended here. Although manifestation didn’t work for me, that does not necessarily mean it’s not worth trying out for others. 

Try out meditation and manifestation for yourself! You might even discover a new hobby you enjoy.