How to Manifest Your Best Life
I loved my twenties, but I know I carried through them a sense that I was preparing for something. Preparing for what? I don’t know. It was a vague feeling. But something was coming. And then I hit my thirties. Marriage and kids and tweaking my career; I was busy and tired all the time (but not at all unhappy) and still thinking something was coming.
And then forty. Oh sweet forty. You realise: Nothing major changes. It is really just a number. And then you realise: Nothing major changes! But look at that number! That something I had felt was coming still felt like it was coming. The difference was that, at forty, I realised how long I’d held that feeling of waiting for the something.
So I started asking friends about this feeling and learned I wasn’t alone. In conversation after conversation, we questioned what the “something” was that we were waiting for. Great wealth? A perfect body? Deeper relationships? More fun, more laughs? Contentment? Relaxation? To read more? The start of that small business? To complete the novel?
We realized we’ve been waiting for a something to make us satisfied. And yet, there’s not going to be any magic moment when that completeness suddenly arrives.
The good news is, the something has been happening all along. We’ve fallen in love with people and places and books and sunsets. We’ve had friendships dipped deep in giggles and support. We’ve had personal and professional successes that left us soaring with satisfaction. We’ve laughed and cried more times than we’ll ever remember. We’ve had moments of utter contentment; we’ve had afternoons and getaways where the world slowed to a blissful crawl.
The question is, how do we actively replace that feeling of “it’s coming” with an embrace of “it’s here”? How do we manifest our best life NOW — at any age — and, more importantly, recognize and appreciate that it’s happening? Truthfully, doing so may only involve a mental shift, but there are steps to help nudge that mental shift along.
1. Visualise dreams and write them down.
I’m talking big and small dreams. Get specific. What do you think will make you happy? What already makes you happy? What do you want more of in your day-to-day life? What do you want to accomplish, in the medium and long-term?
2. Make a plan for the longer-term ambitions.
That dream you want to manifest in the next five years? Girl, you just have to start it now. What steps must you take today, this week, this month, this year, to be on track for your goal?
3. Write down instructions for the day-to-day happiness.
Those little moments that make you happy? How do you make them part of your life TODAY? If you’re stumbling exhausted into bed every night, just barely getting through an endless to-do list, something needs to change. Assess where you are frittering away your existence on time-sucking habits and, conversely, where you can more deliberately build in experiences that bring you fulfilment.
4. Notice your life.
Celebrate the wins. Remember, there’s not some finish line of perfection that you’ll cross when you get a promotion or buy a bigger house or finally reach retirement. Practice being aware of the happiness dotted throughout your everyday existence: be grateful for the partner you’ve been taking for granted; really feel the weather — sunshine, breeze, rain, it’s all amazing, right? — as it touches your arm; relish the invigoration of a good workout; treasure a belly laugh with a friend.
Recognise all that is going right in your life and let yourself feel happy about it. This is it. Life is happening.