We have too much to think about. That's the first thing. The second thing is an extension of the first: We have too much to think about that we do not want to think about. And that leads to the third thing: We create pleasant distractions/diversions and think about them to give us something to think about in order to not think about the things we do not want to think about. But. This creates more things for us to think about, and we already have too much to think about. This is not going to end well. Our lives are going to devolve into chaos and exploding planets all around us because we are thinking about things we have no business thinking about, missing turns, forgetting appointments, leaving the kids at school and losing our place in our life on a regular basis. We blame on aging and having lapses when we just have too much going on. Rent a horse and devote your time and attention to nothing but your horse. Before you do that, consider your thinking. What does thinking what you think about keep you from thinking about? Begin there with transforming your relationship with your life, other people and yourself. First you, then your family, then your job, then your friends and your social world. If volunteering/activism is important, let that substitute for friends and socializing. Work to reduce noise and complexity and to increase emptiness, stillness and silence. The horse will help with this.
When in doubt sit still, be quiet. The old maxim is straight from the Taoist playbook, calling to mind the three grounding principles of Taoism: Emptiness. Stillness. Silence. When practiced in the right way connect us with the way that is our personal path through the labyrinth of daily life to the heart of the matter in each situation as it arises. We don't do anything but wait for direction before choosing from among the choices available to us in each moment of every day. This is the pause that "cleanses the doorways of perception" (Walt Whitman) and enables right seeing, right knowing, right doing, right being-- evoking our original nature and our innate virtues in engaging the here/now in ways that transform us and the world around us to our amazement and wonder at how something like this could happen in a wasteland like the one we live in, opening us to the realization that perspective does indeed change everything, even here, even now.
"Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream!' Amos 5:24 "Do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with your God." Micah 6:8 The Benevolent Curse of Justice, Righteousness Compassion and Peace Through the Ages: May you know what is so, and be right about it-- and do what needs to be done about it in each situation as it arises all your life long! Amen! May it be so! May it be forever so!
Okay, here we are. Let's see what we can do about it. That is the plan for the rest of our life. What governs what we do about it? What guides us in our actions in response to it? How good is the good we call good? Whose good is the good we call good? What is it good for? How good is that? Where do you get your idea of the good? Who are the people in your life who are responsible for your idea of the good? How important is it to you for you to make those people happy with you? For you to please those people? How free are you from those people to decide for yourself what is good and what is not? Where do you part ways with those people in serving your idea of the good? Do not answer these questions! Sit with them! Empty of all assumptions, conclusions, inferences, conjectures, opinions, ideology, etc. Empty of everything. Just you and the questions. Mulling them over. Meditating on them. Contemplating them. Considering them. Wondering about them. Holding them in your awareness. And seeing where it goes. Seeing what this exercise evokes within you. Calls forth from you. Requires of you. Demands of you. Compels you to do.