How to practice manifestation before sleep

Manifestation before sleep can get you in the right mindset to achieve your goals

woman sitting on bed practicing manifestation before sleep
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Manifestation before sleep could be the key to transforming your self-development practice, helping you get clear on your goals and make your dreams a reality. 

Manifesting is certainly having a moment. The practice has taken over our social media feeds and our bookshelves, and it's not going anywhere, anytime soon. Yet, there are still so many misconceptions and questions surrounding the practice. One is the idea that it involves sitting at home thinking about your dreams and waiting for them to come true. In reality, manifesting is a self-development practice that requires you to get clear on your vision and take proactive steps towards making it a reality. 

Still wondering what manifestation is? Don't worry, our experts have got you covered. Here, they dive into the power of manifestation and the benefits of incorporating the practice into your nighttime routine. Plus, they share their top manifestation methods, from utilizing self-care and practicing gratitude to experimenting with techniques such as visualizations and the 369 method. 

Why you should practice manifestation before sleep 

No matter what time of day you manifest, you will benefit from the self-development tool if you're practicing it correctly. This involves letting go of self-doubt, getting clear on your goals, practicing gratitude and taking action, among some of the other best manifestation methods for beginners. However, manifesting before sleep could have an even greater impact thanks to the body entering the rest and digest stage and increased brain activity during sleep. 

"When you're getting ready to sleep, your brain is relaxed and in the alpha state which means you're more receptive to manifesting techniques," explains Gill Thackray, a performance psychologist. "It’s an enormously helpful way to cleanse any residual negativity or doubt from the day and press reset. Plus, it's an effective way to incorporate manifesting into your routine."

Francesca Amber, host of the podcast Law Of Attraction Changed My Life, believes one of the most powerful times to manifest is at night. A huge part of manifesting focuses on practicing self-care and one of the best ways you can prioritize your wellbeing is by learning how to sleep better. "A good night's sleep and repetition of your manifesting goals are both crucial to the process, so creating a bedtime routine that involves both will yield powerful results," she tells us. 

How to manifest before you go to bed

1. Indulge in self-care

We will use any excuse to indulge in a night of self-care, but for our manifesting practice, you can bet we'll head straight to the bath. "When we feel good, we raise our vibrations," explains manifesting and self-development expert Moon Onyx Starr. "The Law of Attraction tells us that when we're vibrating at a high frequency we'll attract good things back to us."

"Create a strong nighttime self-care routine," Starr adds. "A good night's sleep is key to manifesting as when you feel well-rested you also vibrate at that higher frequency."

Add a touch of self-care to your evening with a yoga nidra, a hot bubble bath, or swap your smartphone for a novel. If you're short on time, opt instead for a simple breathing exercise or sleep meditation before you start manifesting in bed. 

woman practicing yoga nidra

(Image credit: Getty Images)

2. Practice gratitude

Another step in the process of raising your vibration, cultivating an attitude of gratitude, is not only beneficial to your manifesting practice but helps to reduce stress and boost feelings of positive emotions. 

In fact, researchers at Penn University found that a regular gratitude practice increases resilience, happiness, and optimism. "That’s exactly the kind of universal energy that we want to connect with when we’re manifesting," says Thackery, who is also the author of How To Manifest.

When you get into bed at night, grab a notebook or one of the best productivity planners, open the Notes app on your phone, or say out loud three things you are grateful for. "It could be a reflection from the day or over time," suggests Starr. "Feel the gratitude of having those beautiful experiences, people, places, and things. This helps you to focus on all the good in your life and greatly increases your quality of life, too."

3. Repeat affirmations

Similar to practicing gratitude, taking time to cultivate self-love before bed will benefit your manifesting practice and overall wellbeing - especially if you're looking to practice love manifestation. "I always start my manifesting practice with an affirmation," Amber tells us. "A go-to of mine is 'I deeply and completely love and accept myself exactly as I am'."

Amber advises creating your own by adding a desired statement that sparks excitement and joy. For example, "I am in the process of attracting all that I need to do, know, and have to attract [insert your own personal goal here]."

If you're initially unsure of what affirmations you want to say or write down, consider using affirmation cards for daily suggestions. You can also find inspiration in our list of confidence affirmations.

4. Journal your desires

Journaling is one of the best ways to put the goals you are manifesting out there into the universe. "It proactively puts the messaging out there, and helps our brains start to focus on the end goal," explains transformational meditation coach Aysha Bell

"We start to live it. Imagining what it would look like to have that thing or feeling, what it would feel like, how we would carry ourselves differently. It puts out positive vibration around the manifestation goal," she adds. 

Put a notebook beside your bed or download one of the best journaling apps. Use this space to write out any thoughts, feelings or frustrations from the day, and then focus on writing about your goals. It will help keep your goals in focus, and allow you to discover the steps you need to take to get there. 

bed with rumpled sheets

(Image credit: Getty Images)

5. Consider how your space makes you feel

We've all heard of the phrase 'tidy house, tidy mind' but did you know that a chaotic, uninspiring space and a lack of sleep hygiene could be impacting your manifesting practice?

"You need to feel excited to get into bed and manifest your dream life every night," says Amber. "The Law of Attraction needs action, and incremental upgrades that inspire the belief that your goals are already on the way."

Creating a sleep sanctuary with luxury sheets is one way to bring this belief into your bedroom. "If you aren't able to or don't want to spend money, instead light candles and clear up any mess in your room before you manifest," Amber suggests. 

6. Try visualization techniques

Many holistic health experts swear by the practice of visualization, and there's a science to it. Research shows that the brain can develop neural pathways not just through physical practices, but through visualizations too. 

"Think of visualizations as seeds. You’ll plant them at night, water them with positive intention and watch them grow," Thackray explains. 

Starr adds, "It's an extremely powerful technique, particularly before bed, because the thoughts and images that are in your mind before you go to sleep, will be those that replay themselves repeatedly in your subconscious mind through the night."

You don't need to practice visualizations every night, but Starr suggests doing this technique once a month, on the evening of the new moon. You can then incorporate reflecting on those visualizations into your full moon rituals

How to do a visualization meditation before sleep, according to Starr: 

  • Get clear on your intentions: Write down one to three goals you want to focus on.
  • Visualize as if it's already happened: Picture yourself being, doing and achieving your focus as if it's happening in the present moment. 
  • Feel into the experience: Allow yourself to fill with emotion, elation and celebration or however you would feel if your goals came to fruition. 
  • Start small: You have to believe that you can really achieve these manifestations, so start small and work your way up. 
  • It may be difficult at first: The practice takes time to develop, and you might find it tricky to visualize at first. If this happens, create a vision board and look at it before bed. 

7. Experiment with the 369 method

Manifesting experts suggest experimenting with different techniques to find the one that works for you. The latest manifesting technique to go viral online is the 369 method, which involves writing your manifesting goals on paper three, six and nine times at different points in the day. 

"There is power in your pen and committing your goals to paper as a way of communicating with the universe will yield powerful results," says Amber. However, she notes that it's not the only way to speak your dreams into reality. "Find a method that aligns with who you are, fits into your life easily, and feels good when you do it."

Thackray adds that it's important not just to write your goals down but to actively work toward them too. "369 is a great tool, but we need vision + mindset + intention + action to truly manifest effectively."

How to do the 369 manifesting method: 

  • Morning: Write your goals on paper three times (see our guide to the best productivity planners if you're in need of a new notebook).
  • Afternoon: During the day, write your goals on paper six times. 
  • Evening: Before bed, write your goals on paper nine times.
  • Write in present tense: Always write as if you already have what you're desiring, for example - 'I have a loving partner who respects me'. 

Tips for manifesting at night 

  • Don't over-complicate your practice: If you don't have enough time and you try to fit a 30-minute manifesting practice into your nighttime routine, it's unlikely you will be able to be consistent. "A manifestation practice that is simple, repetitive, and fits easily into your existing routine is far more likely to work for you," advises Amber. 
  • Let go of limiting beliefs: This is a huge step in the manifesting process and one that you must overcome before you can truly benefit from manifesting. "These limiting beliefs will block your manifestations," Starr explains "Journaling, meditation apps, therapy and inner child work are a few ways to work through your limiting beliefs."
  • Be as clear as you can be: One of the biggest mistakes people make when manifesting is creating vague goals. "Clarity is power and manifestations rely on you being as specific as possible," Amber tells us. Write down exactly what you're dreaming of in as much details as you can. 
  • Try not to let your practice get you down: When you first start your manifesting journey, it can be easy to feel disheartened if you believe the practice isn't working for you - but it's all part of the process. "Try not to let yourself feel down if something hasn't gone your way," Amber advises. "Instead, be grateful for the journey as it's guided you to be the person you are supposed to be."
  • Remember action is key:  You cannot think your dreams into existence. Action is key to manifesting. "This means actively seeking out opportunities and taking steps towards achieving your desired outcome," says Bell. Don't forget to work towards your goals during the day, too. 
Ciara McGinley

Ciara McGinley is a meditation practitioner and health journalist. She qualified as a meditation teacher with the British School of Meditation in 2020 and is the founder of Finding Quiet, a series of classes, workshops and retreats that combine meditation practices and mindfulness techniques to make mindful living realistic in an always-switched-on modern world. She is all about bettering that mind-body connection but believes wellness looks different to everyone.

Ciara is also the former Health Channel Editor at woman&home and has covered all things health and wellbeing for years, from fitness to sleep to relationships.