Well… this is going to be a bit of an odd thing and long. What I notice from a lot of thought forms is they are made of only one polarity of energy or an imbalance in their energy polarity. By polarity I am not referring so much to the type or source as much as its expansive and contractive qualities. Now a good explanation and simplification I actually found in the book Initiation into Hermetics by Franz Bardon. It isn’t too hard to find on your own and actually helped me a lot to simplify these concepts I was working with and give them some real structure to add to my other techniques.
There are three basic concepts I apply to all energy work.
The first concept is that of a akasha or a universal energy without time or form from which all others descend. This has an active and inactive state. Its active state rapidly breaks apart into the two other forces and concepts. In its passive state though it is timeless and connects all reality together and can be used to give a concept of time by cutting segments out of it or as a pure source of power that when turned active produces the vital energy so many gather from the universe with its balance of the two other primary powers.
The second would be the expansive force. This would be the electric energy and would also correspond primarily to the element of fire and air. This is energy that is action and projection so when you want to alter something and send energy out or have a thoughtform do it this is generally what is used. Now using this alone or with too much of it over time the thought form will expand until it sort of fades away or just pops. Of course you can apply this concept of expansion into any energy with a little work to get your mind around the concept though some energies are naturally like this and some are naturally the opposite.
Finally you have the magnetic contractive force. This force is the opposite of the expansive energy and pulls in and contracts. This goes with water and earth generally and other heavy energies. It generally attracts and pulls to you. So when you go to attract something this is usually what ends up appearing. The problem with this is it can over time collapse and implode itself out of existence. Think of it becoming a tiny quantum singularity that then just vanishes with all the energy scattered over reality.
So what I find works is when I create a thought form I break it up into multiple parts and there are many ways you can do this. I generally will pull the pure energy of electric expansion first and form a powerful sphere which I will then surround with an equal amount of magnetic energy until it is balanced. It cannot expand or contract and if you force it smaller it gains more power by being compressed. Then you can let it form whatever other energies it needs for the task and simply impress in it the task and form you want and send it off. You could also take normal energies and give them a concept of expansion and contraction and form them in a similar way where it is balanced. You want it so it can not pop or implode basically and you tell it to keep itself balanced and fed and give it any skills you need. IF you feel it needs an anchor forming a sigil and binding it inside the sigil is also a good idea then the sigil can give even more duration to it.
I find they are a lot more powerful like this too as they can project and attract as needed. So if a thoughtform for wealth wasn’t working it might not have been able to project and create a circumstance to draw to you. My theory at least. I tend to always use sigils for anything long term and give them names or words of power.
Practice is of course very good and I do tend to take kind of an engineering programming type perspective in direct energy work when making anything. Keeping very focused on what you are doing with no distractions is also a good idea. In fact I find it best to use one trance state only for one task then snap yourself out of trance before doing something else. So for example if I am making two thoughforms one to say bring me something good to eat and another to make it cloudy because I don’t like the sun. I will make one then snap myself out of the altered state before going back in with the sole intention of making the next thoughtform.
The book I mentioned before I highly recommend actually it helped simplify things a lot for me and give my own self developed mixmash of methods some real strong structure to them. Now an issue I have is sometimes they are too powerful and need to be dialed down. Some things are also not possible to directly change and take a while to work on to accomplish completely and progress is gained over time instead of either it works or doesn’t there will be a bit of back and forth depending on what you are trying to make them to do. Especially when others emotions are involved long term.