Pay attention to the headlines and you’ll know that Millennials and Gen Z'ers have been accused of carrying out a corporate America massacre, killing everything from cereal to cable TV. But while the media makes it seem that young people are dead set on toppling all vestiges of the past, a number of cultural industries have actually seen a revival in recent years—among them spirituality.

In times of uncertainty, teens and twenty–somethings everywhere turn to tarot card readings. Communication problems can be chalked up to the fact that Mercury is in retrograde, and an incompatible star sign is considered reason enough to ghost a potential love interest.

Every week it seems that a new spiritual practice is brought into the social media limelight—the most recent of them all being manifestation. Throw a rock and you’ll find a post from someone detailing how they used manifestation to obtain the object of their desires, whether it be free Starbucks, a text from their ex, or their dream internship. 

But what is manifestation exactly? It all ties back to the coveted Law of Attraction: our innate ability to attract the focus of our thoughts into our lives. If you’ve ever heard the saying “like attracts like,” that’s essentially the basis of this phenomenon. According to this law, by putting positive energy out into the world, you can expect positive outcomes to reflect back to you. Meanwhile, lingering in a doom and gloom headspace will only tempt more negative situations into your life.

Simply put, manifestation is the harnessing of this Law of Attraction. This practice allows you to draw specific desires into your physical reality through your thoughts, feelings, and beliefs. 

“By bringing our wants and wishes into this realm, we draw that energy to ourselves,” Philadelphia–based psychic reading expert and life coach Christine Wallace explains, “we start reinventing ourselves in order to bring those desires to fruition.”

One of the most common misconceptions about manifestation is that the practice must be incredibly complicated and reserved only for those with extensive knowledge of all things spiritual. But in reality, manifestation is a relatively simple process that anyone can make a part of their daily life. And while there are a variety of approaches that people can take to manifesting, oftentimes you will end up following the same basic principles. 

The first step: be clear about what it is you want to manifest. No one knows your deepest desires better than you do—take some time to figure out you want and own it. “A lot of people don’t take the time to sit and think about what they want in life in clear terms,” Wallace notes, “so when [manifesting] they actually are doing some self examination and learning more about themselves.”

When setting your intentions, feel free to dream big. There is no goal too lofty to manifest, so let your imagination run wild. “What people visualize when they dream of their future or what it is that they ultimately want to have in their lives, whether it be financial success, a position or career, what they want to achieve as far as love and family, is actually a blueprint of what they have the potential of achieving,” Wallace says, “If it wasn’t there for you, you wouldn’t be thinking of it or wanting it or having a desire for it. People desire what is in their realm of possibility.”

Once you’ve identified what exactly you want to manifest, it’s time to ask for it. There are many ways to go about doing this–writing a letter to the universe, putting together a prayer list, conjuring up visualizations, and speaking your intentions out loud, to name a few. One method that has been floating around social media as of late is the 369 Technique, inspired by inventor Nikola Tesla’s divine code.

Manifestation experts also highlight the effectiveness of taking time to put pen to paper and write out your objectives. “It’s really important, I feel, to write down your goals—what it is that you want in your life,” Wallace adds, “What happens spiritually is, once it’s written down and brought into the universe, like, out of your head and into this dimension, a person can actually start to manifest these things to become their reality and their body starts moving in that direction.” 

And after you’ve made your request, Wallace emphasizes that keeping your vibrations high by practicing gratitude is key. “[When manifesting], you are calling upon the spirit world to assist you. But an important part of getting that assistance is the expression of being grateful or showing gratitude for what it is that you do have, what is good in your life. When you start focusing too much on the things that you don’t have, you actually drive the positive things away.”

While there is no limit on what you can manifest, it is important to keep in mind that some aspirations are more difficult to achieve than others. As Christine points out, manifestations that involve other people can be more difficult to bring to fruition as all parties involved must have compatible end goals. 

Furthermore, there are several ways that your actions can sabotage the progress of your manifestations, oftentimes without you realizing it. “[Some people] don’t really understand how they are with others or how they are perceived by others,” Wallace says, “They could also be calculating all of the bad things that have happened in their lives and not thinking about the good things that they should be grateful for.” For some, blockages may take the form of past issues or trauma that they “don’t recall or recognize could still be a problem in their present.”

Luckily, there are a myriad of resources that those who are struggling to bring their wants and wishes into the real world. If you’re in serious need of some manifestation advice, Christine recommends turning to a psychic or some other type of life coach for guidance. “[Manifestation coaching] is exactly what I do all day, so they can definitely turn to me. I can’t speak for other psychics, but there are people out there that help people do this,” Wallace says. 

A professional who can help you identify and overcome the blockages preventing you from reaching your wishes can be an indispensable tool for newcomers to manifestation, and there are a number of ways to connect with them–including this website that Christine recommends. 

So what are you waiting for? Get out there and start manifesting! If you’re willing to put in the work and keep your outlook positive, good things will start rolling your way. 

“The only limits that people have [when manifesting] are the limits of their imagination or any reluctance to put in the energy and the effort required of them,” Wallace emphasizes, “The world is your oyster! It’s all about really being in a good spiritual place. A simple shift can make all the difference in the world.”