TikTok trend: “I manifest the world as I like it”: Why the “Lucky Girl Syndrome” is nonsense

TikTok trend: “I manifest the world as I like it”: Why the “Lucky Girl Syndrome” is nonsense

The Lucky Girl Syndrome is one of the most well-known TikTok trends of our time. The users put everything on one card for a happy life: positive thoughts. A downright bad idea.

The social media platform TikTok has been flooded with so-called “lucky girls” for weeks. They smile broadly into the camera and beam with joy as they talk about their happy life, which they owe solely to their attitude towards life – and in doing so they propagate a way of life that is not at all safe. The videos under the hashtag #luckygirlsyndrome have now reached more than 500 million views, and the trend is rising.

The lucky bear life of the users seems to be of interest to people. And it sounds tempting at first: a carefree life, within reach. All I have to do is tell myself that I can achieve anything I want. But how much truth is there actually? The simple answer shouldn’t surprise you: not very much. But the whole thing is much more complicated.

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Marketing strategy or life lie?

It’s one thing when the promise of easily attainable and everlasting happiness is used as a marketing tool by corporations or shady life coaches. Is that reprehensible? Definitely, because there are people who fall for it – and possibly plunge into perdition in search of happiness. But probably at least buy something that can only give them the promised happiness, if at all, only in the short term. Here one can still speak of an unfair sales strategy.

In the case of the Lucky Girl Syndrome, however, the users give the impression that they really believe what they propagate in their happiness videos. For example, American influencer Laura Galebe says in one of the first Lucky Girl videos: “I just always expect great things to happen to me and then they happen.” There is no product placement, no offer for a webinar or anything else – just a hint that you should try Manifestation yourself.

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In the original sense of the word, manifestation means making something visible. Nowadays, the term is mainly used in the yoga and mindfulness scene for mantras that you say to yourself over and over again. These can be general affirmations such as “Life is good to me” or individual sayings that relate to the respective life situation. In the spiritual scene, it is believed that manifesting has the power to direct our lives by focusing on our desires and visions.

Life as the only request concert

The Lucky Girls on TikTok are now using exactly this philosophy. The senders firmly believe that they can turn their lives around for the better through the power of their thoughts alone. And they post all sorts of presumed evidence that their concept is working: they manifest a new love and a short time later they get to know their dream partner. You think of a job – and the HR manager knocks on the door. And who knows, maybe her thoughts can even cure diseases…

Sounds almost too good to be true? It is. No matter how much we believe in good things, bad things can still happen. In order to be successful, to have a loving relationship that works, and to fulfill most of our big dreams, we need to do more than just believe that all of this will eventually become a reality. But – and this is good news for all the lucky girls out there – it can help to think positively. If you do it right.

Right in this case means that the positive intentions should also be followed by actions. Instead of giving up responsibility for your own life by convincing yourself that you can solve problems with the power of your thoughts, you can use positive thoughts. Namely, to strengthen your own self-confidence and thus better arm yourself for the crises and negative feelings that life has in store for each of us. We all secretly know that where there is light, there is also shadow and such.

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Manifestation does not mean convincing yourself that you can change external circumstances through positive thinking – but strengthening your inner being, concentrating on the positive things in life without ignoring or repressing the negative sides. Anyone who succeeds in doing this has the chance of actually becoming a happier person – at least in the long run. This is exactly what the Lucky Girls on TikTok usually do wrong. They almost completely refuse to deal with reality because “everything will be fine anyway”.

The Lucky Girls’ blind spots

Realistic optimism, on the other hand, changes our view of the world. It also makes us more confident and solution-oriented when facing problems, rather than sitting down and wishing the universe would just sort things out for us. Quite apart from the fact that the Lucky Girls on TikTok seem to forget in their positive thought bubble that there are bigger problems than the desire for a perfect boyfriend or a new car.

The biggest shovel they do is emancipation itself. For decades we women have fought to be able to make decisions about our own lives. And then we are slowly on the right path to more equality, suddenly thousands of young, educated women willingly disenfranchise themselves. And for – yes, for what actually? For a happy life that actually isn’t one. A realization that the Lucky Girls will probably get at some point. Because there are things that are more powerful than any manifestation.

Racism, poverty, the climate crisis, war, cruelty to animals, crime… the list could go on and on. The major problems of our time agree on one point: they simply cannot be solved through the power of our thoughts. No matter how lucky the girls on TikTok get – they will not find a solution to structural problems. Neither does the universe.

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And yet the many crises of recent years have something to do with the success of the Lucky Girls: people long for security, for control. The more confusing times become, the greater the breeding ground for seemingly easy ways out of the maze. Unfortunately, these are often a dead end. Instead, it’s worth critically questioning yourself when life isn’t going in the direction that makes you happy.

Am I on the right path? Which direction do I want to take – and which paths have I only taken for others? What kind of person do I want to be – and with which people do I want to spend the time I have? Finding honest answers to these questions may get us closer to long-term happiness than anything the over-motivated lucky girls on TikTok have to offer. You just have to believe in it.

Source: Stern

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