THE BEST MEDICINE
Once upon a time, there was a man who felt he had reached the end of his rope. To him life was meaningless. All spirit had vanished from his life. Even his family, friends, and his work failed to hold his interest. Finally, nearing the point of desperation and at the end of his rope, he visited his physician. After listening to his story and seeing the depth of his depression, his doctor asked, “when you were a child, what one thing did you like to do best?”
The man took a deep breath, paused for a few moments, then replied, ” I enjoyed visiting the seashore.”
“okay,” his physician said calmly, ” I’ve got just the remedy. But I must warn you. You must follow my instructions to the letter. Under no circumstances are you to deviate from my treatment.” His doctor then pulled a notepad from his desk and continued.
“Tomorrow, I want you to spend the day at the shore. Find a secluded area on the beach and spend the entire day-from nine in the morning until six o’clock at night. Take nothing to read or anything to divert your attention. I’m going to give you four prescription that are guaranteed to cure your ailment. Take the first at nine a.m., the second at noon, the third at three, and the last at six. Do not look at the instructions now. Instead, wait until you arrive at the shore tomorrow morning.” With that, the man promised to heed his doctor’s orders and left his office.
The following morning, shortly before nine o’clock, he packed his car on a lonely stretch of beach. There was a strong wind blowing in from the sea, and the surf was high and pounding. Depressed and forlorn, he walked to a sand dune near the inviting surf and sat down. As instructed, he took out the first prescription, opened it, and read it. It simply said, “listen.” That’s all that was written on the paper-listen. And for three hours that’s all he did. He listened to the sound of the buffeting wind. He listened to the lonely cries of the seagulls. He listened to the sound of the rushing surf. He sat motionless and listened.
At noon, he reached into his pocket and took out the second prescription. Just like the first, these instructions were plain and simple. It said, “reach back.” And for the next three hours he did just that: He let his mind wander as far back as he could. He recalled all the incidents of his life that he could remember- the happy times, the bleak times, the triumphs, and the struggles.
At 3:00 p.m. he tore open the third prescription. It said, “reexamine your motives.” This took so much intense thought and concentration that the remaining three hours slipped by quickly as he reexamined his motives- his reasons for living and fulfilment. He clarified and restated his goals.
And at six o’clock, under a gray, darkening sky and with a taste of salt mist in the air, he read the final prescription: “write your worries in the sand.” Pausing for a moment, he knew there was something that seemed to be gnawing inside. With his pants rolled up, he grabbed a stick, walked to the shoreline, and wrote his worry in the sand. Before leaving he stared at what he had written. But as he had walked toward his car, he looked back and saw that the incoming tide had already erased his words. A smile eased onto his face as he got into his car and headed for home.
Now is the time for you to ingest these four prescriptions. Begin to listen, to reach back, to reexamine your motives, and to write your worries in the sand. Begin now to place your troubles, difficulties, and past failures into perspective. It is a sad day when the curiosity and zest for living slips out of one’s life or when feeling of uselessness engulfs one. There is so much to do, so much to give, and so much to enjoy. Now is the time for personal inventory. Now is the time to discover who you are, where you are going , and how and when you will arrive at your destination. If you’re not where you wish to be, there’s only one reason. Now is the time to find out why. Begin now! It’s never too late! Make the best possible use of all those talents you possess, and more will be given to you to use. Remember what you want also wants you. There are no unanswered requests in the universe. if we do not like what we’re receiving, we can learn to ask for something different. Then we will find what we wish.