A Floating Milk Bottle

Dairy in the SkyBack when I was younger, I read about a technique used to help you remove a controlling thought from your immediate awareness when you were trying to be mindful.

When the thought comes up, you picture a glass bottle.  I always pictured an empty milk bottle.  The kind that you would leave at your doorstep for the milkman to pick up.

Then you would visualize the controlling thought and place it right next to that bottle.  I would try to come up with some kind of visually striking symbol that was related to what I was thinking about.

You would imagine the thought slowly entering the bottle. Then imagine a cork plugging up the bottle.

It is important to pay close attention to the stopping up of the bottle.  The source of this technique said to use a symbol that made noise, if it seemed appropriate. Once the bottle was closed, you should imagine that the noise completely went away.

The idea is bottled up, but it is still in your immediate attention.  Now, you push the bottle away from you.  It floats away into the distance, eventually disappearing from your imaginary field of view.  I always imagined the milk bottle floating in space with stars behind it.  I give it a slight push and it would get smaller and smaller, slowly rotating around its center.

Unfortunately, I can not remember the source of this technique.  But it has stuck with me for many years.  I find it quite effective.

Recently, I have not been using this visualization technique.  I have been focusing on quantifying my mindfulness process.

But, I have found that writing down my controlling thoughts and sending my thoughts into space are the same thing.

Both are acts of purging the thought from your immediate awareness.

You identify, capture and release.

Photo courtesy of Unhindered by Talent 

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