This is a meditation preparation exercise, and one you're likely to have to employ pretty much everytime you meditate, at least in the beginning anyway.
When you first start meditating or quietening your mind, your mind reacts by going into a bit of a crisis.
Your mind doesn't like silence you see - it's way too easy for all sorts of thoughts and fears to fill silence, and shock horror! you might have to deal with some of this issues you've safely been ignoring in the recesses of your mind.
It's strategy to make some noise is usually pretty pedestrian.... you'll quiet your mind in readiness for your fabulous meditation and find that you're running through your grocery list, or trying to mentally tick off all your to do lists - simultaneously.
When you're sitting on a porch having a cup of tea, or on the beach looking at the horizon, almost invariably birds will enter your frame of view at some point.
So what do you do when that happens? When the birds enter your frame of view?
Do you jump and try and grab them? Do you try and stuff them all into cages or chase them around, trying to make sure that they within your frame of view?
So then why do you do that with your thoughts?
When you're in a meditation and thought enters your frame of reference, just let it go like you would a bird across the sky.
Leave it to flit, leave it to fly, leave it to go about it's business and you'll mostly find that you hardly even notice the distracting thoughts anymore.
The key to this is surrender, not resistance.
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