This exercise is designed to help you when you find it difficult to deal with negative thought patterns.
1. Imagine you are sitting on a peaceful beach. It is warm, and you are wearing a bathing suit. The tide brings warm waves lapping all around you.
2. Bobbing in the waves are clear glass bottles. Each of the bottles contains a written ‘message’ which is one of your own thoughts. Some of these thoughts are positive, and some of them are negative. They are all mixed up together. Just let them all come in on the tide, and go back out on the tide. ‘Read’ each thought as it passes by you, just recognizing that it belongs to you: you wrote the messages in the bottle. Try not to react to the message itself, just observe each one.
3. As the tide turns and begins to go out, focus your attention on one positive message that you wrote with your mind. Pluck the bottle from the sea, and hold on to it. Allow the tide to take all the other bottles back out to sea. Observe them all, getting over smaller, as the tide retreats.
4. Now perform a real-world action which relates to the message in the bottle that you have chose to keep hold of. It might be as simple as running a hot bath, taking the dog for a walk, or phoning a friend. The important thing to recognize is that you can choose which thoughts to act upon, and which to allowed to receive beyond the horizon.