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What is the art of manifestation and can you spark success by drawing your hopes and dreams?

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When she was growing up, Natascha Shah filled her art journal with imaginary scenes from her future life. A few years later, she realized she was experiencing many of these scenarios, including going to Australia for a postgraduate degree.

At the time, in 2004, she was unaware of manifestation, a self-help technique that requires focusing one’s thoughts on a desired outcome. After the concept began to gain popularity – thanks to Rhonda Byrne’s 2006 book The secret, as good as with celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey-Shah began to draw parallels with her own practice.

Now a protest coach in Delhi, Shah says that while writing can be effective, she prefers drawing as a tool to articulate her goals. “Of manifestation techniques, like writing or speaking, I find drawing to be more purposeful, creative, and effective,” she says.

She shares her manifestation art, which includes whimsical and intricate black ink sketches, on social media. One meant to unleash creativity, for example, shows a woman with waterfall hair holding a sitar, sitting amid swirling leaves and dancing vines. Meanwhile, a cozy cabin surrounded by mountains, pine trees and billowing smoke, dotted with stars and a crescent moon unfurling from the chimney, is a symbol of a new beginning.

Eyes on the prize

Critics question the pseudoscientific basis of the manifestation, but the worldwide popularity of the practice, with its heartwarming premise of “believe and you shall receive,” is undeniable.

“The practice of setting intentions is valuable. Through this, we focus our mind on the goal we want to achieve and minimize limitless distractions that will keep us from achieving that goal,” says Dr Paul Hokemeyer, clinical psychotherapist and founding director of the Drayson Mews Clinic in London.

Proponents of drawing as a tool of manifestation believe it is more effective because humans are visual creatures. “When we see an image explaining a complex idea, it helps us deepen our understanding and go deeper,” says artist Leeanne Brennan, of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, who was drawn to the protest in 2012. Because I’m an artist, I learn by tracing complex information into easy-to-understand visuals.

It can take time, but I’ve even had clients tell me that their goal came to fruition within a week of creating their design.

Natascha Shah, Protest Coach

Through her company, Epic Bones, Brennan creates manifestation art and guidance programs to “unlock limiting beliefs.”

However, artistic skills are not a prerequisite for creating manifestation designs. “Even stick figures and scribbles are fantastic because you’re not distracted by the ‘beauty’ of the art. The art of manifestation is powerful because of the deeper meaning and understanding it creates for you, not for anyone else,” says Brennan, who creates simple black and white drawings, including a figure crossing what it feels like to step on the other side of what the we feel desires.

A clean slate

But it’s not as simple as drawing. Shah emphasizes the importance of the pre-drawing process to mentally create space by releasing any emotional blocks or trauma that may be holding you back. “A lot of people skip that first step before drawing. If I want to manifest a certain purpose, but I don’t have the room for that kind of energy, I have to first accept those emotions, confront them, and release them. before moving on,” says Shah, who teaches various release techniques in his manifestation drawing workshops, encouraging clients to practice them for a few weeks before attempting their drawings.

Dreams don’t happen in a vacuum. They manifest as discipline, hard work, resilience and courage

Dr. Paul Hokemeyer, clinical psychotherapist

Drawing concepts such as transition or growth can be difficult, Shah says. This led her to compile a list of symbols from various world mythologies that represent a range of emotions and concepts. “I share this list with clients, but encourage them to incorporate personal symbols,” she says. “If you associate balloons with happiness, use this symbol in your drawing.”

Aesthetics is therefore inconsequential. Brennan says, “It’s getting the image through the hand that’s important. Focus on meaning. “

Brennan and Shah credit their manifesting practice with fulfilling several goals, including travel, career changes, education, dream homes and more. “It can take time, but I’ve even had clients tell me that their goal came to fruition within a week of creating their design,” says Shah.

Different strokes

Determination can motivate you towards a goal, but it is insufficient without action. “Concentrating your thoughts is not enough,” says Hokemeyer. “Dreams don’t happen in a vacuum. They manifest as discipline, hard work, resilience, and courage.

Shah agrees that one cannot wait for things to happen. “Manifesting prepares your mind to work toward a goal. When your thought is right, the energy aligns and the action synchronizes accordingly.

In addition, the practice is not suitable, in itself, for everyone. For example, there is a risk that anxious people manifest their negative thoughts into reality, which can do more harm than good.

“Practicing visualizations can be unhealthy for people with mood, personality, and mental health disorders, including depression, borderline personality disorder, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia,” says Hokemeyer. . “They could project characteristics of their disorders into their images. If they then focus on these images, they run the risk of amplifying the negative results.

However, he suggests that the manifestation should be a restorative clinical intervention, supervised by a trained mental health professional. “A trusted professional or even a friend can help them overcome their negative thoughts and work to move them from despair to a place of healing and hope.”

Updated: September 22, 2022, 03:24

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