Thinking. Thinking. Thinking.
walk down to the local Tesco store, its a mini mart similar to 7-11. Carries a limited range of products at inflated prices. Same products are way cheaper at the company's larger stores, but the inflated prices pay for convenience. Read local store.
I buy some produce and walk out the store and hang a left. There's an ATM/Hole-In-The-Wall cash machine. A dark haired girl is punching at the keys. Another girl is standing 2 - 3 feet behind her, waiting to use the same ATM.
As I approach, the girl at the ATM, swings round and walks away. The girl queuing walks to the ATM spins round and calls the first girl back. She points to the ATM with the cash still in the dispenser.
The first girl spins round and rushes back to the ATM and grabs the cash. The girl behind her is honest and brings to her attention she has walked away without taking her cash.
You have to ask. If you go to an ATM to get cash, what makes you walk away without the cash? Like going to a bar to get a drink. Ordering the drink. Then walking out the bar before you drink it. If you go to a store to buy apples, then subsequently walk out the store without the apples. What's gone wrong?
You've gone to get cash from the ATM, why walk away? What causes that?
Its the distracting thought syndrome. Distracting thoughts pass into your mind and pull you're attention from what you are doing. Distracting thoughts grab consciousness and momentarily take over. Those thoughts are displaced by other thoughts. You're distracted and lose sight of your original goal, which was to collect some cash.
Each moment of every day, thoughts bombard us. Distract us. Take attention away from the present moment. It results in errors, accidents, mistakes, loss, and embarrassment.
You only need to sit for a few moments, at traffic lights, on a bus or on a train, and observe how your thoughts wander off, taking your attention with them.
How do you overcome this innate intellect defect? Through concerted effort.
"Lost in thought" is a saying, that pretty much well expresses it, because you are lost. You become lost. Thoughts drag you away from where you are into "thought land". You lose track of where you are and move into "thought space". You have become momentarily detached from the physical world and the reality attached to it.
Sometimes if you are lost in thought, you may bang your head or your elbow and come back down to earth. The pain pulls your attention away from your thoughts and focuses on pain.
We, each of us, get "lost in thought" hundreds of times a day. The trick is to stay focussed and not drift off in thought. Hard as that may seem, it is possible.
I once asked a doctor friend: "What happens if your thoughts stop"
He replied: "You die."
He was wrong. But that's for another blog post.