Alissa and Matt on a boat.

Manifesting Dreams: What You Believe Becomes Your Reality

manifesting spirituality Jun 03, 2019

When I was 5 years old, I won a coloring contest put on by our local newspaper. My prize was an art set almost as big as me.

In elementary school, they chose a student’s drawing each year to be the cover of the yearbook. In fifth grade, I won. My drawing of a ship called the “S.S. Friendship” was featured on the cover of the Christa McAuliffe Elementary School yearbook.

I started forming this belief that I was lucky. Not that I was, like, artistically gifted. Nope, I started believing that magical things happened for me.

That belief followed me around everywhere I went. Any time there was a contest to enter, I’d think, I bet I’ll win this. A lot of times I did.

Maybe you call that the Law of Attraction? Manifestation? Whatever you want to call it, it works.

So, I’ve held onto that belief. It’s as much a part of me as my hair is blonde. I’m lucky and things usually work out great for me.

As a result, I’ve experienced many moments in life where things have worked out so seamlessly and almost effortlessly, it’s scary. Friends look at me in shock, “I can’t believe that happened for you!” And, bewildered myself, I just smile and shrug.

The Power of Self-Belief

What we believe about ourselves shapes the world we live in.

During my teenage years, insecurity hit and I started doubting myself. “I’m not good enough” became a major belief of mine, which overshadowed my feelings of being lucky.

This belief of not being good enough translated into me: staying in crappy relationships, letting people walk all over me, not feeling confident enough to take risks.

I was hard on myself. I played small. I wallowed in self-pity. There was this song called “Beautiful Disaster” by Jon McLaughlin which I basically thought was about me. I kept a printed copy of the lyrics in my desk drawer that I’d read whenever I was feeling down.

She prays one day she’ll find someone to need her. She swears that there’s no difference between the lies and compliments. It’s all the same if everybody leaves her. And every magazine tells her she’s not good enough. The pictures that she sees make her cry.

When you believe you’re not good enough; when you believe nothing good ever happens for you or something always goes wrong; taking chances feels scarier. Instead, you stay where you’re safe. This is too good to be true. Things never work out for me.

That’s where a lot of people stay stuck. They convince themselves they don’t want what they actually want. They think there’s no way it could happen for them. I know I missed out on a lot of my own potential for years because I thought this way.

Trusting the Process

If you want an amazing relationship or that director position or to buy a home on the lake; you have to fully, truly believe it’ll happen because you’re capable of making it happen.

It doesn’t mean sitting on your couch hoping, wishing, and waiting. It means working toward that goal, that thing you want with unrelenting faith and tenacity. I’ll say it every which way– you truly have to believe it’s going to happen because you’re taking the steps to make it happen. Bottom line. Period.

When going for what I want, I’m always flexible in my approach and always open to better detours. Meaning, I have an idea of what I want in my life, but I don’t always know exactly what it looks like or how I’m going to get there. I think that’s where a lot of people get stuck. They visualize what they want and then turn down anything that doesn’t look exactly like that.

Let’s say you’re single and meet a man you feel connected to from the moment you met him. But, he doesn’t fit the description you’d envisioned for yourself. Maybe he doesn’t eat as healthy as you thought your future husband would; maybe he’s a tad shorter than you’d pictured for yourself.

I think God/The Universe presents us with gifts all the time and it’s up to us see them for what they are. Trust your gut. If something new comes into your life that causes you to think twice; don’t ignore it because it doesn’t look exactly like you thought. Sometimes intuition trumps intellect.

If I had to break down my “manifesting” thought process into steps, here’s what they’d look like:

  1. Recognize what I want
  2. Work toward the goal with unrelenting faith
  3. Be flexible with my approach
  4. Recognize the opportunity and give 100% to get it

Believing in this way is something everyone can do. And believing any difficulties you encounter are happening for you; whether to teach you a lesson, give you strength, detour you from the wrong thing; is a really important part of that belief system.

Let me share a couple examples to give more color to this.

Finding the Love of My Life

Right before I met Matt, I was single at the same time as a lot of my girlfriends. I heard a lot of the girls saying, “Guys suck. I’m never going to meet anyone good.”

And while I was sick of guys myself at that point, I never let myself go there. I really, wholeheartedly believed I’d meet someone great, though I didn’t have any evidence to back it up. To their complaints I’d just respond, “Nah, there’s good ones out there. We’ll meet them!”

One week before I met Matt, 1/2/16, I wrote in my journal:

“I need to keep a positive outlook and really enjoy my life. I’m so lucky to be here. I want to make the most of every moment while I’m young and single because I know one day I will be married and have a family. I’ll cherish these days. 2016 needs to be a year where I control my mind and just be happy in the moment.”

I was going through a tough time, then. I remember. Most of my journal entries right before that were filled with anxious thoughts and frustrations. But despite all that, I really trusted and knew that things would work out because they always do.

I wasn’t trying too hard to get a boyfriend because I felt happy on my own. But, I was also kind of lonely. So, I downloaded a dating app called Hinge; something I swore I’d never do. I swiped and swiped and “matched” with this guy named Matt.

I had this weird feeling as soon as I saw his photos. Like, this deep knowing inside. He epitomized everything I’d ever been attracted to. He felt like this perfect human and I’d never even met him. I don’t know how to explain it well because it wasn’t just a physical attraction; it was a strong gut instinct that something was different.

The next morning, as I drove to work, I admired the snow on the peaks of the mountains. A few moments later, I received my first ever text from Matt. “Wow, do you see how cool the mountains look today?!”

We met for the first time a week later. As I walked into the restaurant and saw his warm smile, I immediately felt at home. We talked and talked. We went through two bottles of wine. I went to the bathroom and texted my mom, “He’s AMAZING.” I’d never felt this way before but I just knew he was the one. I knew, from that moment on, we were going to be very important to one another.

  1. Recognizing what I wanted: A relationship with a good guy. I was comfortable being single at this point and knew I wasn’t willing to settle for anyone who wasn’t a good match for me.
  2. Working toward the goal with unrelenting faith: Despite not having my own evidence of great guys being out there, I knew there was someone perfect waiting for me. I was open to dating new people. I put myself out there despite being hurt in the past.
  3. Being flexible with my approach: I didn’t have a checklist of criteria my future boyfriend needed to meet. I trusted I’d know when I met the right person. And I joined a dating app despite always talking badly about them. When I let go of the idea that I needed to meet someone “organically”, I allowed myself to be open to new opportunities.
  4. Recognizing the opportunity and giving 100% to get it: When I matched with Matt, I got a feeling I’d never experienced before. I recognized there was something special about this guy. Despite this being my first ever date from a dating app, I overcame my worries and met up with him. I knew he was “the one” very quickly; I didn’t let any fears or worries stop me from moving forward.

Getting the Job of My Dreams

When I graduated from college, I didn’t know what my future held. I just didn’t feel drawn to work for any of the corporate retailers in Minnesota and Wisconsin that everyone else was going to work for. I had a feeling my path was going to be different. How so? I wasn’t sure yet. I just had a feeling.

To cover my bases, I still applied to Target, Kohl’s, and ShopKo. It would’ve felt irresponsible to not even try, but I didn’t get any calls back anyway.

I applied for jobs all over the country. I spread the net wide. Location didn’t matter. I just craved a fresh start. Months went by, graduation came, I still didn’t have any leads for a corporate retail position.

So, when I graduated college, I started working as a sales associate at Nordstrom. A great job, but it was entry level and something I could’ve gotten without my degree. From the outside, things might’ve looked a little bleak for me. But, I still just trusted something bigger would work out for me and kept applying everywhere.

I held onto the belief, I’m lucky and things work out for me. I also knew I was smart, hard working, and every employer I’ve ever had has really liked me.

That sounds like I’m tooting my own horn but hey, you’ve gotta believe good things about yourself if you want good things to happen.

A month into my job at Nordstrom; I received a phone call from Anaheim, California while driving through a blizzard with my friends. It was PacSun’s corporate office and they wanted to interview me for an internship position, My opportunity had arrived. I’d be making $10 an hour, no guaranteed job afterwards; it started in a few weeks.

I jumped at the opportunity. I knew this was the Universe presenting me with a gift. It was go time. I prepared like a maniac for my interview. I power posed and turned on the charm. I knew I’d never forgive myself if I let this opportunity slip by me.

I got the internship, which turned into a job, which eventually opened the doors for me to work at Vans, which is a true dream company.

Let’s break it down.

  1. Recognizing what I wanted: A job out of state. A fresh start somewhere new.
  2. Working toward the goal with unrelenting faith: I applied and applied and applied for jobs. I didn’t sit and wait for someone to approach me. I applied anywhere and everywhere, open to all options and just seeing what would land.
  3. Being flexible with my approach: I worked at Nordstrom in an entry level position, even though everyone else seemed to have salaried, corporate positions. I didn’t let myself get stuck in a box. When the PacSun opportunity came, even though it was an internship position, I was flexible and saw it as a foot in the door to a life I wanted to have.
  4. Recognizing the opportunity and giving 100% to get it: When the Universe presented me with the PacSun job opportunity, I recognized it as the sign I’d been waiting for. It was GO TIME. In the past, I’d never been a great interviewer and I wasn’t a big studier, but I did everything in my power to make this happen.

Manifesting your dreams into reality is like a dance. It’s knowing when to lead and when to follow. It’s a perfect harmony of belief, trust, flexibility, and tenacity. It means getting up and trying again but never giving up because what’s meant to be yours, will be yours.

Take time to get quiet every day so you’re able to hear what you want. Not what you think you should be doing. Not what your friends are doing or what your parents wish for you. What do you want?

With clarity, you’re able to more easily see the gifts you’re being presented with. Your path slowly reveals itself. When you’re focused and clear about what you want in your life; you’ll start seeing the synchronicities everywhere that get you closer to your dream.

With love,