From manifestation coaches to money codes, believing in the power of positive thought and the law of attraction to create your desires are among some of the most popular beliefs of our time… and Rebecca Hunter-Kelm’s Instagram feed is FULL of it.
"Lucky Girl Syndrome" is the latest element of the manifestation trend to hit TikTok, with more than 90 million views on the #Luckygirlsyndrome hashtag since the new year.
From using daily affirmations that "I’m the luckiest girl alive" to writing down dreams in a manifestation journal, young women worldwide are swearing by Lucky Girl Syndrome to get ahead in life. From getting job opportunities, to green traffic-lights on the way to work, to booking cheap flight tickets, fans of Lucky Girl Syndrome use positive thinking to bring about their desires.
As a Jesus-loving copywriter who is familiar with the basics of manifestation from a quantum physics point of view, (read about this here), I’m all for an abundant life (it’s why Jesus came after all). I believe we can use the science of quantum physics to partner with the Holy Spirit to manifest good things into our lives and for the good of the world (hint, it’s called prayer).
However, as motivational speaker and world-famous author of bestselling book The Universe Has Your Back, Gabby Bernstein points out, human desires always come down to money, sex or power. The "Lucky Girls" blowing up TikTok right now want modelling jobs, promotions, paid partnerships and fame online, relationships and recognition for their beauty.
I believe we can partner with the Holy Spirit to manifest good things into our lives and for the good of the world (hint, it’s called prayer).
None of these things satisfy the soul’s ache for a saviour, for meaning, for a purpose. Just like when believers of the prosperity gospel forget all about Jesus, and just pray to get his blessings and abundance; they tragically miss out on the one and only thing that can truly satisfy every desire we will ever have: him. Those consumed with being a "Lucky Girl" are missing the point. They are going after "stuff" as opposed to a spiritual awakening or relationship that has any value for the soul.
Psychologist Robert West says the Lucky Girl Syndrome trend is merely the latest version of "magical thinking". It takes a grain of truth that dangerously spirals into a fantasy world. Yes, the grain of truth is that our mindset can impact our reality. But believing we can just "imagine away" difficult circumstances in our lives is offensively fantastical.
What about when people suffer? Are those with cancer just not "lucky" enough? What about the millions of people affected by the earthquake in Turkey and Syria? Maybe they didn’t do enough affirmations. It’s heartbreaking to imagine people blaming themselves for circumstances they can’t control. It breaks Jesus’ heart too.
None of these things satisfy the soul’s ache for a saviour, for meaning, for a purpose.
I also worry for young people (mostly girls) seeing the trend who struggle with their mental health. Imagine you’re a 16-year-old feeling hopelessly depressed and your scroll-time is filled with girls telling you that your problem is you’re just "not lucky enough". Parents and youth workers need to be aware of Lucky Girl Syndrome and its potentially damaging implications. I’m all for thinking positively, but Lucky Girl Syndrome thinking can take a turn for the delusional, causing people to have a kind of laissez-faire attitude that "it will all work out in the end". Imagine the university student who believes "everything will work out for her good" and spends so much time focussing on this affirmation that she doesn’t study enough and fails her degree.
Overall, the Lucky Girl Syndrome is a self-centred superstitious belief that takes the science behind the law of attraction and dangerously exaggerates it for temporary worldly gains. God wants to bless us with good things in life- the job, the spouse, the house. We can come to our good and Heavenly Father and ask him for these things, and trust that he knows what’s best for us, and will bless us according to his will. After all, instead of repeating the affirmation: "the Universe is working in my favour", we know that God, the almighty CREATOR of the universe, is for us (so who can be against us? Romans 8:31).
Let’s daily meditate on his glorious kingdom and renew our minds with his word (Romans 12:2) for positive thinking that can manifest real miracles. Let’s also not forget our responsibility to use our God-given gifts to work hard to achieve amazing things. The way of Christ is a beautiful paradoxical one of simultaneous abundance and suffering. When we face trials and persecution, this is part and parcel of the narrow path - but it leads to LIFE. It leads to him, to Jesus, and unlike beauty or the approval of man, our true "Matthew 6" treasure will never spoil or fade.