top of page

How to Manifest While Depressed

Hello my beautiful souls!

Welcome back to the Modern Manifestation blog. Feel free to listen in to today's topic in the podcast.

Please note: this blog post is based on my personal experience with depression and how I best support myself through an episode. Your experience with depression will be unique, so as always, I recommend that you speak with your doctor(s) before making any radical changes to your mental health journey.

Today I want to talk about how to manifest with depression. Specifically, how I go about manifesting while I’m experiencing depression, or better yet… while MY BODY is experiencing depression.

In the manifestation space, a lot of people avoid talking about “low vibe feelings” like anxiety and depression. While this is starting to change for the better, there are still plenty of spiritual influencers who want us to be “high vibe” and positive all the time (cue spiritual bypassing).

Or worse yet, people will tell you that you can manifest your way out of depression… as if this chemical imbalance is somehow your fault. And if it can be your fault, then we must disguise our pain out of shame.

Suppressing something like anxiety or depression for the sake of appearing positive all the time isn’t only performative, it’s dangerous.

However, I fell for the “good vibes only” rouse for a while. I wouldn’t post new blogs or even record podcast episodes unless I was in the “right energy”. That meant weeks, sometimes months, waiting for my dopamine levels to normalize… Leaving my subscribers without new content for extended periods of time—feeling like a fraud for talking about self-development while not self-developing anything for days on end. I felt like someone was pointing a finger to me accusing me of actively choosing depression.

I even put off writing about my experience with depression because I’d assumed it made me a manifestation fraud. How could I talk about manifesting the life you want when I struggle with depression?

What I should have asked myself at the time was: How can someone with depression feel included in the spiritual space without feeling like they’ve done something inherently wrong?

We can’t “high vibe” our way out of a state of depression any more than we can use our positivity to avoid discomfort. As the Law of Polarity and the Law of Rhythm state, negative emotions are embedded into the human experience as a part of the natural ebb and flow of our lives.

Manifestation isn’t about bypassing discomfort or removing negative experiences from our lives. It’s not about not having any demons to battle internally. It’s about building a life that can support us no matter what state we’re experiencing (demons and all). I’ve seen some really low, lows… and I’m here to talk about how I move forward anyway.

We’re not here to manifest perfection. We’re here to manifest lives that are full and experienced. Sometimes, this includes having a body that experiences depression.

So to those of you who experience depression and still want to manifest a healthier, happier life… I welcome you <3

I’m here to tell you that depression is not your fault. You do not need to be fixed. And, there are tools you can use to support yourself while going through this experience.

So today, we’re going to talk about how I manifest the things I want despite my bodily experience with depression. But first, let’s clear a few things up.

Separation: You are Not Your Depression

The best advice my therapist ever gave me was this: you are not your emotions or your chemical state of being. She gave me this insight after a long session. I’d finally admitted my anger toward some past events and I kept repeating “I am angry”. After saying this for the 15th time, she asked me how it felt to say “I am experiencing anger”, instead. The shift was subtle, but powerful, so I bring this advice to you today: do not identify yourself based on your emotional state.

I am not my depression. YOU are not your depression. Our bodies experience these states, but we do not become them.

Depression is a state our body and brains experience as a result of a chemical imbalance. This state does not define who we are.

We are greater than our circumstances. We can still manifest the lives we want, even when our bodies experience depression.

Your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors determine your identity and what you create more of. You may not be able to control your chemical imbalance (your hormones), but you will always have control over your thoughts. To that end, I want to share something that I wish I’d heard years ago when it comes to manifesting with depression:

How you feel about your depression, is more important and more meaningful… than the depression itself.

Understanding this difference is critical to shifting how you manifest while experiencing depression or anxiety. You are not your depression, and how you FEEL about it is more important than the depression itself. When you can grasp this concept, you can move toward supporting yourself through a depressed episode.

Supporting Yourself Through Depression

While my body is experiencing depression, I rarely have a lot of energy. The best thing I can do for myself during this time is to find ways to shift my focus toward supporting myself.

What we focus on, we create. If we focus on what truly matters—supporting ourselves in the best way that we know how—then our attention, focus, and our thoughts are all centered on supporting ourselves. In other words, all of our energy is going toward finding ways to help ourselves feel good. Our intention is to feel good.

This is the key to continuing our manifestation progress. Not focusing on the depression itself, but how we can support ourselves through it.

For me, this starts with self-care. When we support ourselves, the universe supports us. Your focus drives your emotions.

I used to believe that your emotions were the most important factor contributing to what we’re manifesting, but I’ve changed my mind over the years as I’ve battled anxiety and depression. Your intention and your focus matter more than your emotions.

What you choose to focus on is what you’re choosing to think. Your emotions come secondary to these two things.

What you’re choosing to think will impact your emotions overtime. Shifting your focus will direct your thoughts. Instead of focusing on how I can manifest my way out of depression (or out of anxiety), I focus on how I can support myself through this experience. I’m not trying to bypass or avoid the discomfort of the experience; I’m supporting myself through it. The difference is subtle, and it is important.

I used to believe that I could manifest my way out of depression or fix this problem as if it were something to cross off of a to-do list. This was a very masculine “get it done” kind of energy. In a way I was trying to tell myself that I could pull myself up by my bootstraps. Instead, I’ve found more success treating my depression by choosing to support myself, instead of changing myself. My supportive energy is more feminine, like a caretaker. I’ve found that this feminine approach helps me get through the experience more smoothly than the masculine approach.

The Difference Between Manifesting With and Without Depression

The biggest difference in my manifestation journey, while my body experiences depression, is my focus. It’s a subtle focus shift, but it is really helpful. Instead of solely focusing on abundance, growth, and transformation…. My priority is to support and care for myself. Of course this is always a priority for me, but it’s more intentional while my body goes through this experience.

Otherwise, you manifest in the same way with the same tools you normally would, with a bit more self-care baked in.

While I can’t control my body’s chemical response and expression of depression, I can control how I let it impact me. Sometimes you have to “sit in the suck” and binge Netflix on the couch or sleep. And it is perfectly fine to give yourself unconditional permission to do so if that’s what self-care looks like for you that day. On the days when you have a little bit more energy, focus on making micro improvements to your day. This is how I continue to manifest while my body experiences depression.

So, let’s jump into the steps I take on days when I have a bit more energy, that really help me when my body is experiencing a state of depression:

1. Get clarity on how I’m feeling

I always start off by trying to understand, as best I can, what it is that I’m currently experiencing. In other words, what emotion would I use to describe my status quo?

Because I grew up in a family that didn’t talk about emotions, I often find that I need a little help with this. Years ago, when I was struggling to define how I felt… My therapist handed me a card with over 100 vocabulary words for different emotions. This allowed me to grasp the feeling more appropriately, so I could begin to workout what needed to change. Nowadays, I use this same strategy in combination with the Emotional Guidance Scale (from Abraham Hicks) to help me get some clarity on my feelings. Click here to get a copy of the scale and learn more about it.

When referencing the emotional guidance scale, I notice that my emotions usually fall anywhere between an 8 and a 14 (boredom through worry). For me, the feeling of depression isn’t always overly sad. Sometimes depression manifests as a lack of motivation, extreme boredom, lack of desire, inability to exert effort, a general sense of overwhelm, hopelessness, frustration, irritation, etc.

Understanding the emotion I’m actually feeling, instead of just referring to it generally as depression, allows me to determine what my body and mind may need. If I’m feeling unworthy, I can then ask myself what I need that might help me feel more worthy. If I’m feeling grief, I might give myself time and space to cry, journal, watch a movie that resonates with this. I’ll also begin to ask questions of myself such as, “Where does worry show up within my body? What does it look like? How does it feel if I focus on it?” Does it have a shape, color, or any other characteristics? Is there a memory or belief related to this emotion?” This is a powerful somatic exercise that can help you reconnect with your body. As someone who has spent more time disassociated rather than connected to my body, this exercise has taught me how to stay with my body, even when the experience is difficult.

Once identified, and clarified through the somatic exercise, I will journal on my results. If my experience is “anxiety”, I may define it as a reddish / orange spikey ball that sits on my chest and extends out toward my shoulders a little. It may feel hard, heavy, or all of the above. Then I’ll sit with this feeling in my body for a bit. Maybe 5 minutes, maybe 10. Sometimes 15… and I’ll see if anything changes or shifts the color, shape, or feeling. I call this “sitting with the shit”.

The purpose of this exercise is to become aware. To become aware of what you’re feeling, where you’re feeling it, how you’re feeling it, and what your body needs as a result of this information.

Keep in mind: this exercise can bring up intense feelings. If you begin to spiral, determine whether or not you feel safe continuing. It’s okay to hit pause and continue under the supervision of a mental health expert. If at any time you need support, reach out to your support network and doctors.

This somatic / mindfulness practice can work wonders for your mental health. Harvard studies have shown that a mindfulness practice can have a massively positive effect on people whose bodies regularly experience anxiety and depression. Learn more about this in my Benefits of Meditation post.

When you’re done, journal your results or say them out loud. For me, journaling helps me transmute the emotions, but others may have more success describing the results in a voice memo or even a video stored on your phone. Whatever medium you choose, be sure to document your results. This is one of the reasons why this process is so therapeutic. There is something special about bringing your internal experience into the external world, it helps you shift your energy.

2. Determine the Worst Case Scenario

Once I’ve determined how I’m feeling and what may be causing this feeling, I begin to break down the cause (if I can).

Half the time, I can’t pinpoint a cause…. Half the time, the feeling just exists because it does. If this is the case, then just acknowledge this reality and sit with the shit anyway.


or the times when I can pinpoint a cause that is adding to the experience of depression (or at a minimum, not helping it) I explore deeper to find out what’s going on. And I mean really explore… If the issue is, “I’m stressed about money”, I think through all the reasons this is stressful. I get as specific as possible. Are you worried you can’t pay rent? Buy something you want? Start a family? Start a business? Invest in therapy? Create wealth?

List all the reasons why this cause is stressful.

Then, for each reason behind the cause, I go even deeper.

The point of this exercise is to find out your worst possible scenario for each outcome. What does it look like? What would happen next? What would it mean for your life?

The reason I do this is because we tend to avoid discomfort. Therefore, the cause of a negative feeling, and the reasons why those causes are so stressful, is usually left to fester in our subconscious. Instead of looking at the cause for what it is, we allow it to lurk as this unknown and unspecified outcome. But our subconscious fears the unknown, so this exponentially makes our experience worse. To better explain this, let’s use an example:

Lily’s body is experiencing depression. She’s identified that anxiety and worry are contributing to this feeling. After going through the process outlined in step one, she begins to dive into the cause of those feelings. She’s determined that money is the cause of both anxiety and worry. She’s constantly stressed about finances. As she goes deeper, she realizes that she’s worried about finances because she is afraid of becoming homeless. As she dives deeper into her worst case scenario, she begins to ask questions like “What would I do if I were facing homelessness?”, “Would anyone close to me help?”, “If I found out that I was losing my home tomorrow, what is the first step I would take?”, “Are there any resources that I could reach out to?”, “Is selling my home for a smaller place a solution?”, “What is the absolute minimum money I can live off of each month?”, “Is there any reason why I wouldn’t meet my minimum, and if so, what could prevent this?”. In other words, you get to know your worst case scenario, intimately. In fact, you’re visualizing it. Not from the perspective of manifestation, but from the perspective of showing your brain, your amygdala, what your biggest fear would look like if it came to fruition. This eliminates the fear of the unknown. Instead of homelessness being this massive unknown trauma, it is explored and prodded. We’ve just removed a huge amount of the subconscious threat because we are familiar with our fear. We’re less likely to fear what we understand.

Once Lily identifies what homelessness would look like, she can begin to problem solve. Lily might have reasoned that she could stay with a friend or family member if she faced eviction. While this is not ideal, she may come to the conclusion that there is a small chance that she would actually end up homeless. And if she did, she’s already logically thought about what her next steps would be while she’s in a better frame of mind. When she thinks about finances in the future, there are a few less “unknowns” related to this fear. She has a better idea of what her “oh shit” plan is.

While this sounds like a negative process, it’s not. Understanding your worst case scenario takes away its power, or the sting, of that fear. By repeating this process, we can rationally begin to understand our options. While the fear will remain, it’s changed. It’s no longer a worry that’s driven by the fear of survival, but fear of inconvenience, in this case.

Keep following your own rabbit trail to figure out where your feelings and emotions take you. Look at the very core of the feeling to determine how significant or relevant the fear is, whether or not your ego is creating this fear based on an unknown factor, and whether or not it makes sense to continue to fear that result.

For me, 99% of my fears and anxieties stem from the unknown, which is usually worse than whatever my reality would be.

Thankfully, I’m privileged enough that I’m unlikely to ever be homeless because of my community. But my subconscious, who is looking out for my survival, doesn’t recognize this. Instead, my subconscious operates as if my survival is always threatened.

When we understand what our actual worst case scenario is, we remove the stress of something worse. Let your fears become known. Instead of allowing the experience of anxiety or depression continue to pepper you with worst case scenarios, own them. Know them. Understand what they really look like so you can reduce the impact and the power they have over you.

It’s like the expression goes: the devil you don’t know is scarier than the devil you do.

3. Fully accept the feeling of depression and separate yourself from it

Accept that your body is experiencing depression, and YOU are not. As you begin to accept the experience of depression as something humans sometimes go through, something that is experienced through chemical changes at no fault of your own, you can begin to separate yourself from it. Your body and brain is experiencing this feeling of depression, but your soul… who you really are, is not. You are not your depression. You are not your anxiety. You are so much more than your circumstances, so do not blame yourself for this experience.

I love the practice of “accepting what is” because it takes away the self-shaming. It allows us to step into a more maternal energy, so we can take care of part of ourselves that is experiencing this state. Once you accept and separate yourself, so that you are not your depression…. You can begin to ask yourself, “How can I take care of this version of myself that is experiencing depression?”. Acknowledge that this is where your body is, fully accept that there isn’t anything you need to change about yourself right now, and remember that this is temporary..

Acceptance omits the shame. Acceptance allows us to redirect our focus to self-care; finding ways to support ourselves; finding ways to nurture ourselves through this temporary experience.

Accept. Separate. Nurture.

This process is key to shifting my focus to self-care. My goal is to take care of myself in the best way that I can. Sometimes this looks like taking a bath, brushing my teeth, watching a show, or finding something that brings a little joy to my day. The importance of this practice is subtle, but it’s important. Instead of focusing on the depression itself, I focus on self-care, self-love, and self-compassion. When it comes to manifesting your intention, this small shift of focus is huge.

As I begin to support myself in small ways, I shift my focus back toward progress, back toward manifesting the things that I want.

Once I get to a place of acceptance, I then move onto the things that I normally do when I want to manifest the life that I want. Things like meditating, journaling, visualizing, positive affirmations, etc.

For a deeper dive into how I modify my manifestation routine when I’m depressed, stay tuned for my next blog post.

When my body is experiencing depression, my soul job… the most important thing I can do, is to find ways to support myself and how I’m feeling. To look for little ways I can help myself throughout the day, and then go through the exercises mentioned above. Identify what you’re feeling, determine the cause, accept this experience, separate yourself from the experience of depression, and then dive into your typical manifestation tools from there.

This is how I continue to keep myself on track to manifest, while my body experiences a state of anxiety or depression.

Depression is temporary. We are greater than our circumstances.

The universe always has your back. Do what you can to support yourself, even if it’s just giving yourself unconditional permission to stay in bed all day or to re-run the laundry machine four times if you keep forgetting about it. Sometimes it’s giving yourself unconditional permission to binge Netflix or sit on the couch all day. Whatever you do, give yourself the permission to do this without shame. Willingly do whatever you need to do to support yourself during this time, knowing that only you know what you need.

Self-care is how you will continue to manifest the things you want while depressed because your goal and your focus are in alignment: supporting yourself with unconditional love. When your focus is to support yourself, the Universe will show up to support you, too.

Thank you for hanging out with me today. I will catch you in the next post!

Follow Bre on: Instagram | Facebook | Pinterest


Check out this discussion in podcast form:

For more like this, check out our podcast on iTunes or Spotify! Now live on all major podcasting platforms.

Related Blogs & Podcasts


  • Pinterest
  • Instagram
  • Facebook
bottom of page