Excerpt from The Soul Searcher's Handbook

by  Emma Mildon

Ever fallen asleep while reading something on your iPad in bed only to have it fall from your fingers and smack you in the face?

I think we’ve all been there, or some version of there, whether we admit to it or not. What if it’s not just sleep clumsiness? Maybe little technology elves are trying to send us a blunt-force message of the go-the-f**k-to-sleep variety.

Magical mischief makers or not, we could all use a wake-up call once in a while to remind us to give our body the good lovin’ it deserves— whether that love manifests in the form of getting more rest, engaging in more physical exercise, eating right, or feeding the connection between our bodies, minds, and spirits. Consider this chapter your wake-up call from your ol’ bag of bones.

I (and most everyone else at this point) have noticed over and over that, in today’s world, we are taught to “just do it,” to “never give up,” and we are living busier, fast-food-saturated, sleep-deprived, instantly downloadable lives surrounded by lights, energies, frequencies, and stressors that we’ve never before encountered as a species. While there are major benefits to all the innovations of modern life—amazing advances in medicine and green energy, the ability to form partnerships and friendships across the globe, opportunities to do more and be more than ever before—the “should’ve done it yesterday” mentality is also taking a heavy toll on our mental, emotional, and physical well-being.

Unlike our phones and tablets, we cannot simply plug ourselves in to recharge our batteries and, no matter what anyone tells you about energy drinks and wake-up pills, a magic, quickfix recharge just doesn’t exist.

The things you are about to explore spell the imminent demise of your romance with your energy Band-Aid of choice. With the encouragement of your body, you are about to break up with your quick fix, so start working out how you are going to dump your pseudo-energy crutch now. It’s not you; it’s the crutch. And, hopefully, you’re just not that into it anymore...

Our habit of being constantly connected and finding ways to artificially rev ourselves up doesn’t just impact our rest. Privacy has gone the way of the dodo bird. Our lives have never been more public, making solitude a rarity and self-care nearly nonexistent. Today, we often find ourselves consumed by society’s penchant for over-delivering on work results and undervaluing quality of life. As a result, many of us feel like our lives, minds, and bodies are spinning out of control.

Happily, concepts like “mental health days” and the integration of practices like office fitness programs, along with a general acceptance of holistic health practices, are becoming more widespread. People are finally beginning to see the benefits of feeding their souls with things that fuel their happiness, relax their minds, and most importantly, leave their bodies feeling more balanced.

Some practice yoga or meditation; some seek out alternatives to traditional Western medicine. I’ve noticed there is one unifying factor across those practices: they bring our bodies back into equilibrium with our minds and souls.

What works for you isn’t necessarily going to work for me or your mom or your best friend; it’s all trial and error (emphasis on the error at times, right, you little genius?), but without experimentation, no one would ever leave the damn house in the morning! So roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty here. Your body will thank you for it.

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