292: Does Manifestation Work?

17 Minutes Read

There's a reason a lot of people don't like the word "manifestation": it's usually a trick. 

Stripped of its roots in esoteric practices and disciplines, it gets sold as a cosmic piggy bank just waiting for your withdrawal. And it usually fails as a result.

But just because its most common form is shallow doesn't mean it isn't real and can't work for you.

In today's episode we explore what's wrong with the usual approach to manifestation and how to use it instead. And yes, it takes work, but maybe not the kind you're used to.

You will discover:

  • How to tell where you're blocking your ability to manifest
  • How to attune yourself to the energy of what you want to manifest
  • Why you don't need to be someone fundamentally different to manifest what you want


Join the manifestation classes we mention in the Superabound Life membership here.

If you want support manifesting your truest dreams in the world, we have openings for new VIP one-to-one clients. Learn more and book a consultation here.

Listen to past manifestation episodes of the podcast here and here.

Listen to this week's episode on Apple Podcasts here

Listen to it on Spotify here

Watch the video here

Full Transcript

Steve Haase  0:01  
Welcome to the Superabound podcast with master coaches, Erin Aquin and Steve Haase. We're business owners like you learn tools that helped you clarify vision, clear up static and overcome challenges. You are listening to episode number 292. Does manifestation work? If you have been listening to the podcast for a while, you will know that we love the intersection of the inner and the outer spirituality and business meaning and making. And one of the powerful points of connection there is the idea of manifestation. That your thoughts can somehow influence the world that you create. And not just like the thoughts influence your outcomes, but actually thinking things lead to them being present in your world. You may have heard of this as the idea of manifestation. And many people talk about it, many people teach it. In this episode, we're going to go deeper into what is it all about? Why might your manifesting not work? Why might it be working and some of the principles perhaps, that are behind it, helping you make those more conscious, so you can do it even more effective. It is an exciting, interesting episode, very philosophically rich, but also one that will help you create a more abundant life. Whatever that means to you. One note, the conversation begins kind of midway through if you want more of the behind the scenes, what we're up to in Superabound land. The video on the podcast show notes page has more of our introductory banter about things we're thinking about what we're working on in our life, outside of the specifics of this episode. So go check that out at besuperabound.com/podcast. We also mentioned our membership program, which teaches some of these principles of manifestation of the spiritual work that can help you not just be more fulfilled internally, but create a more values aligned and visionary business in your life. You can learn all about that membership and join us at besuperabound.com/life. Let's dive in.

Erin Aquin  2:28  
What we're talking about is the idea of manifestation. So the last couple of episodes, we've kind of dipped our toes into some spiritual topics, spirituality at work, channeling content, hope you liked that one. But recently, what I have noticed I kind of went a little bit of an Instagram rant. Now my rants are pretty nice. They're gonna say they're

Steve Haase  2:56  
thoughtful and considerate. Yeah, because

Erin Aquin  2:57  
I don't want to do the thing that I'm criticizing, basically. But what I've noticed lately is there's a lot of people who are not in a magical or spiritual context, like they're not teachers of esoteric wisdom, or mysticism. They are not practitioners of different art forms. And, yeah, there's a lot of people who are like, on the outside, commenting on things that they actually know nothing about. And sadly, it's been a couple of people who I really do respect and I think are very smart. And I'm just kind of like, why there's so many bigger things in the world that we could be talking about. I don't know why you gotta go after astrology, or limit it to like, pop culture horoscopes, or one recently, was somebody talking about how manifestation is bullshit? Spicy. I know, it's all for marketing. But I wanted to we wanted to do this podcast, because I do think there are people that probably do feel that way, and maybe have even tried manifestation. And, you know, we're not here to say what is real for you? Or what is the right practice for you? That's never ever our approach. But if for any reason you liked the idea of manifestation, or you don't like it, because it's never worked for you. I may have some ideas. We may have some ideas as to why. Yeah,

Steve Haase  4:38  
let's go into it. The and I don't want to make this too abstract here. But when when people are commenting on things from the outside, there it like there's an issue with that from the very beginning. Because, like the scientific enterprise gained its foothold as the basically the religion of our day. By doing exactly that. It says, let's look at something that we're interested in, why we get sick, why apples fall to the ground, any of these great, you know, mysteries revealed by the scientific enterprise. And let's look at them as an objective observer. And what we later on discovered is, there's no such thing as an objective observer, right? The whole Schrodinger cat Heisenberg uncertainty principle,

Erin Aquin  5:30  
lingers cat Schrodinger,

Steve Haase  5:34  
the word cat, oh, simultaneously at the same time, right. And basically, that the observer effects the situation, which if you just kind of pay attention to your own experience is patently true, right? Not that whether you're present or not, gravity exists or not. But your experience of the world is dependent upon who you are, how you see things, what state you are in, if you are in a state of flow and engagement, you experience the world differently than if you're distracted, upset, annoyed. And so the things that really matter in life, have everything to do with the subject with you. And so to question is astrology real? Does manifestation work? As an outside observer who has no skin in the game? Don't mind me, I'm just a scientist, I have no skin in the game is a false pretense like, you can't start an experiment from that place of I'm just going to be a skeptical observer. You know, don't mind me, none of this shit is real, until you've proven it to me. For it to actually bear truth or falsehood. Yeah,

Erin Aquin  6:58  
and by the way, we love the scientists and the researchers that are part of our community. And kind of just knowing the very little that we know about that world, we don't know much. But we know something. It's very hard to have studies created and grants given for those things. So just because there is no scientific evidence about something, it may have something also to do about like what society values because, yeah, maybe it's not a really high impact, high importance thing to study. And that's why there is no study, there is no kind of scientific evidence. So just as a, as an aside, okay, but what we're talking about, is going to be our anecdotal experience. And I would say kind of like from the get go. Even though I'm very, I'm a witch, I'm even like, very open to magic and different things, I actually do sometimes have a problem with the way that the idea of manifestation is sort of sold to people. I know there are really deep, wonderful folks out there teaching this. But I do think is one of those things where I was just looking at my little hermetic book today. This is just one example. This is happens in other cultures, but in like Western occultism, the idea of manifestation is actually just one of many principles from this sort of schools of thoughts. And what people who are out there kind of teaching the popular version of manifestation often do is they take away all of the history, all of the information and with that often a lot of the worm practices that you need in order to be good at that. So like, for instance, a really simple way sometimes that people will talk about manifestation is you maybe have a practice where for five minutes a day, you go for a walk, or you sit down and you visualize the thing you want to bring into your life, and you try to get yourself to vibrate at the frequency of the desire that you're attempting to bring in. That's amazing. The problem would be is that most people who attempt to do that, don't have a grounded meditation practice. don't actually know how to visualize anything, and have no idea what it means to vibrate at the frequency of the thing they're trying to bring in. You disagree. You're just looking at me with

Steve Haase  9:47  
no beside eyes. Got no other way to look at you.

Erin Aquin  9:54  
You're gonna get scolded. I can feel it.

Steve Haase  9:58  
No, I I I completely agree that but to make things commercially accessible, it often helps to strip away the challenging elements. And to pump up the benefits of it. And so with manifestation, the message is often get the thing you want only five minutes a day. Like, what a proposition, get what I want only five minutes a day. Amazing. But when a deeper examination will reveal, there are actually many other aspects that will put your vibration in tune with the thing that you want. And those five minutes a day. Like maybe that's the starting point that might be kind of somebody's first step on the path. But by selling Hey, that's, that's basically it. It's, it doesn't set Anyone up for for a good experience. And I think one of the main, like my big issue with it is, it points to the getting of the thing as the main event, when the main event is actually who you become, in order to be worthy, you are already worthy, but in order to vibrate in harmony with that thing, the the transformation, the process, the refinement of self, the attunement of self, that is the action. That's the real challenge. That's the quest. But you know, most people aren't interested in the, in the attunement of self, they're interested in the prize. They're interested in the million dollar business and, you know, in the in the fame and the glory.

Erin Aquin  11:53  
Yeah, I think that's a really good point. It's like the energy of wanting something is not the same as the frequency of having it. And I can't even remember the quote, but Christopher Penczak has a really good way of talking about this. Like he talks about how, I'm sorry, Christopher, if I'm screwing this up. But he talks about how like, manifestation, theri idea of that practice, is, it is just one really small part of a larger sort of magical education and sidenote, there's a lot of people who I think, don't like the word magic, would be really upset if I told them that like what they are doing as a manifester, is what I do as a witch, they would probably be like pretty upset about that, because whatever they think about me, but stripping away the the esoteric mystical pieces of it is like, I kind of I think of it as just really simple terms, it would be like someone telling me that I can take this Advil, or this painkiller. And I'm getting all the medicine I need. It is like just one small part of a much larger system that requires much deeper training. Like how offensive would that be for doctors out there for someone to walk in and say, I am totally qualified, I can heal anything with this Tylenol? Wouldn't it? It's so

Steve Haase  13:42  
what is the word oversimplifying? Yeah,

Erin Aquin  13:44  
yeah, like it's, and it's also just like, not true, it's not going to be that that one pill is not actually going to work for every single condition that every single person could have. And so I think anytime we're taking a piece away from a larger system, it is just a disservice. And it's really reductionistic and especially for people who live there like how to problem thinking that they're doing magic when they're manifesting. But but also might be why it's not working. Because this is one of the most magical tools we've got. Yeah, even for like coaches, when we talk about things sometimes we're, we have a process in our business called the visionary practice. Where we actually spend time is a manifestation practice, where you spend time with the version of you somewhere in the future who's lit a specific lantern in your life, and you get all the wisdom from that version of you and then you actually commit to going and doing something in service of creating that in in reality, you're taking an idea and doing the work to make it real in the world. It is one definition of magic and

Steve Haase  14:59  
in the question of does manifestation work? I think it's helpful to just sort of break down, what are the elements that work for you? And where might you not be kind of meeting the process with your own self. So are you wanting something, but not doing the inner work to clear the path to it, a lot of people say, Well, I want to be fit. But they don't do the inner work to create the time, hire the coach, or commit to the program, have smart accountability, get themselves to the place be willing to do the hard work, like there's this, there's like, no things you have to do to meet that desire. And the doing of the things is, the easy part is getting over your own static Habits of Mind your own mental blockers, to do those things, that's often so hard. That's why kind of the healing of static, that kind of understanding and integration of these parts of you that are actually against your desires. Because if there were no parts of you that were against your desires, you would have them right now, your life would be exactly as you want it to be. But for many of us, there are things that we want to improve and so

Erin Aquin  16:30  
are not even improved. Like it's not always about improvement. Sometimes it's just about like shifting.

Steve Haase  16:36  
Yeah, you want them to be more in line with your vision for for the life that you want. And so a good place to begin is really questioning, where am I not showing up? In this in this, this mixture of, of inputs.

Erin Aquin  16:55  
And this is where I think also, if you know, you know, we're using a really like, kind of a smaller example of like what a manifestation practice could be. But like if, if you're spending five minutes focused on a desire, and part of the internal feedback you're getting is, well, I'm not doing this, and I'm not doing this. And I should do this differently. Like, if the internal narrative is really unhelpful. The other pieces of this work are gonna be great. Like you need those, we need ways of connecting, we did a class, just recently, inside of our Superabound membership on the magic of the lower self, sometimes known as the nonverbal pre verbal self, the younger self, and how that part of you actually doesn't connect with words and ideas and shoulds and forceful notions, it's actually often sometimes even known as the shadow self, where it's the part of you that has cravings and desires and not always like the best self control, that part of you actually responds better to emotional work, doing your spiritual hygiene, your energy clearing, getting all of the senses involved, you know, this is why when we're doing in our practice, this is maybe not for everybody. But in our practice, we have all the candles and the incense and the mood lighting and the space, those sensory inputs and the sort of ritual experience talks to that lower self. And lower doesn't mean bad, it just means the part of you that doesn't operate up here. So manifestation totally works. For a lot of people and for for some people, they don't have to do all the meditation, two years of meditation practice and grounding. They might just be so single, pointed and visionary that they, you know, can naturally frequent. They naturally vibrate with the frequency that they that they want to call in. But most of us are vibrating at the frequency of wanting and not having. And that is not going to help you if you're trying to manifest unless you start doing some work in the world and some work within

Steve Haase  19:26  
your wanting and not having.

Erin Aquin  19:30  
It's the paradox. This is the paradox. Yeah.

Steve Haase  19:33  
What's the paradox,

Erin Aquin  19:34  
I'll just share like a personal story that's kind of business focused. But um, but early on, when I started the coaching business that now we have together, I was very focused because of the community that I was in. It was very focused on like reaching $100,000 That was like the big community wide goal and anybody who's trained in that school knows what I'm talking about, but like reaching 100 case six figures was like the milestone as a coach. And for the first two years of the coaching business, I was by myself. That was my main goal I was trying to I was doing all the things except for magic and manifestation. I don't know why I didn't involve myself in those practices. Well, I was trying to do it. Regardless, I really wanted to meet that financial goal. And then we had a turning of the wheel of fortune in our life, where suddenly, within a couple of months, we became millionaires. Kind of crazy to say, millionaires. And I guess that's not a lot of money now. To me, because I mean, I had previously been making virtually nothing. And what was really interesting, as soon as I felt like I suddenly had money in my life, and it wasn't hard. And it wasn't a struggle, it didn't come to me from working and overworking it came through like, some good stock options are work and a work like a job that you had done in kind of a magical thing that happened that I've told the story on the podcast before. But the second I had tangibly, the thing I thought I wanted. Within a month of that I reached six figures in my business. And it was really wild. It was just like a weird moment of saying, I don't need this anymore. And therefore, I was already free. I was vibrating at the frequency of having money. And then it was so easy suddenly to be in my business and make money.

Steve Haase  21:53  
What was the process that you went through?

Erin Aquin  21:56  
The process, actually, at that time was I was doing work on myself worth every single day. So I spent six months in a meditative process, where I was not sitting around thinking like crunching numbers and thinking, how am I going to bring in clients? And how am I going to do this? It was not at all that it was actually learning how to be worthy as I was, which took a lot of work. It was really deep shadow work.

Steve Haase  22:25  
Yeah. Which, if you're thinking about a coaching business,

Erin Aquin  22:32  
or any people business, yeah, if

Steve Haase  22:35  
you're not embodying the thing that you're selling, and if you're in a PR agency, and you're not telling great stories, if you're in a law firm, and you aren't thinking creatively and and for the interests of the people that you represent, then it's, it's, there's going to be a disconnect, right, the thing you want will never come to you because you're not in the place to receive it. And so it, it strikes me that the money was flowing into your life at the same time that you were stepping into your own self worth. Yeah,

Erin Aquin  23:19  
and it was and I think the other piece of that is that I wasn't doing self worth work in order to figure out how to make more money. Yeah, that's the other thing is sometimes, yeah, like, it was like the biggest blocker to me being able to go deeper with my clients and to really listen to what I want and create that in my business was me thinking I couldn't share podcasts about channeling and magic and manifest like, like, whatever was going on with for me at that time, I was not totally comfortable in my own skin. So I kind of hid behind the coaching tools that I learned from other people. I didn't want to develop my own thing. I didn't want to use my own authentic experiences and share more of who I am. Yeah.

Steve Haase  24:09  
So I think if we were to put a pretty bow around this whole, you know, topic of which you could write many volumes, it would be stepping into your own authenticity, the the core things that we talk about, it's like, what is your vision in your heart? What are the lanterns that are going to light that up? And how do you connect that inner with how you show up in the outer and that is going to have the most power for your manifestation it's not going to be from feeling like the inner environment is a desert and a wasteland and unworthy. Meanwhile, you're thinking very sincerely about the new Bugatti that you want. It's, those two aren't going to go together. The inner needs to match the outer end In a way that carries you forward in your evolution.

Erin Aquin  25:04  
I mean, that's well said. But I also just want to highlight that it's easier said than done. Oh, yeah. No, that ain't easy. It's not easy, because you may have to commit to this more deeply, then you know, and I'll say this even for the magical folks, so I can, like I know some people who are hanging out with us. They are doing beautiful, ceremonial rituals, they are, you know, lighten their green candles for the money and bustin out the frankincense, and really working with their own spiritual guides. But even if you're doing all of the magic, and you're using all of the principles that are available to bring something into your life, that your work may not be the magical piece, it may be the mindset, I think it's probably true for everybody. You can't say you want something, ask the universe to support you with it, and then turn around and talk shit about it. That money is what we're talking about money right now. So we use money as the example I see so many people who do money magic, but then have the worst things to say about people with money, have the worst relationship with money, they're not like investing in them themselves in ways that feel like wealth to them. And that is also a contributing factor. So you can't just do the manifestation in the magic. You also have to live as if, and support yourself through that static. Yeah.

Steve Haase  26:49  
What we're saying is, this is deep work, deep work, deep work. So anyone who says oh, that's all just a bunch of Whoo, just a bunch of mumbo jumbo just, you know, there's nothing to it. Everyone's just making it up. But those are people who are on the outside not actually getting in and saying,

Erin Aquin  27:05  
or they did it for five minutes. And they actually didn't do any of the work. Yeah.

Steve Haase  27:10  
Yeah, just just standing back as the superior observer, rather than the person in the arena, who was actually humbled by the challenge of creating something really important from, you know, whatever we have. And

Erin Aquin  27:25  
for those of you who feel like, okay, I'm doing all of the mindset work, I'm doing the magic at a deep level. And things that I'm trying to call in and vibrate in relationship with are still not coming. Sometimes that can be a gift to I think I'm a pretty good manifester. I think you are an excellent manifester. And sometimes things don't happen, that we really wanted to happen. There's always a reason. And to borrow something from a client I worked with a couple years ago, who used to say, there's always a reason didn't happen, and I'll probably it probably will just find out why, in a couple of months, we always find out why. So that too, can be a gift from the universe. It's

Steve Haase  28:14  
raining now. And reminds me of the walk that I took just this morning, I walked down to the river with my our little girl. And I was noticing how the water was making so much happen. There was all this life around and inside the water, the birds, the fishes inside, it was a giant fish jumping right in front of us. It was crazy. Morning bugs me I get into morning bugs, all the humans that were living around the water. And I was reflecting on what the water had to do to create all this magnificence. And the answer was just be itself. It wasn't hustling. It wasn't struggling, it wasn't pushing, it was just flowing, where the riverbed ticket evaporating as the moisture, took it that way and heading towards the ocean is gravity and the channels of the land brought it that way. And that was kind of the lesson that I took from it, which I think is very relevant to manifestation is that a certain amount of it is just you being

Erin Aquin  29:18  
you doing nothing, not you waiting for the universe to do all the work, but being

Steve Haase  29:26  
so I think reflecting on what that means for you. What your Bing is and how it is uniquely significant. I mean, we're here at the we're here at the river in our town. And like what's significant about it's not some, it ain't Mighty Mississippi, it but it is it is the one that is and so how can you be the one that you are in such a way that draws

Erin Aquin  29:58  
what you want to you And that is the most challenging part I think about all of this is how can you be the one you are having desires having things you want to call forth, but not needing it, gripping it. Counting or measuring your your self worth by having a bit. That's the hard part. And it's the mystical part. It's part of the journey in the shadow work and all the good stuff. So hope this is giving you something to think about. It's giving me things to think about. Yeah, me too. If you want to continue the conversation, we're always happy to hear what you've got to say we're going to be talking more about manifestation and magic, and especially in the context of like, how you also bring that into your professional life. Because I know some people feel like ooh, if I'm doing that in my work, I don't know if that's okay. Is that spiritually ethical to call forth my goals through magical means? I have some ideas for you. And we're going to be talking more about that over the next few months inside the Superabound Life membership, which you can find out about at besuperabound.com/life

Steve Haase  31:17  
See you there. Thanks for listening. Take care.