We all live life on autopilot. And it makes sense – default settings make for faster decisions and more efficient living, and the evolution of our brains to work in this way is what has made humans not only survive, but evolve to be as effective as we are.
Dealing with every detail of life, especially in today’s relentless world, would exhaust us mentally and physically. The problem is that we miss much of what makes life actually worth living, rushing from a to b without stopping to see where we are going, or feel the experience, and missing huge chunks of the journey in the process. We’re still operating in caveman mode – but not living in caves. As Chris Barez Brown says ‘Our subconscious may be efficient, but it ain’t making us shiny.’
Wake Up is there to help us to reconnect with our world and our lives. Telling his own story of recognising that the moments of presence and connection are truly wonderful and ‘life is a fantastic game’ but also how fleeting these moments are before going back into the ‘pinball’ machine of life, Barez-Brown has gathered together a collection of experiments to wake up – 52 in fact. Accompanied with an app to help remind and encourage, it’s a fantastic book to help everyone show up in the world, away from the relentless demands and drain of simply existing.
Split into three categories – tune in and focus, plug in to a resource around you and power up your body and mind – and supplemented with resources and evidence as to what the benefit is, there’s likely something in here for everyone. He stresses that these are experiments, things to try and see if they fit, and that this is not a guide to life or set of rules. With space to draw, write, create, scribble or doodle, it’s very much a hands on book and designed to be not a burden, but an opportunity for ‘gigglesome, action packed and experimental play.’ Spielzeug as the Germans call it, and as the title of one experiment is.
So there’s living on £5 a day to make more conscious choices. Block out time for yourself to do things that ‘fill your soul with joy.’ Visualise dreams and realise what you can do now. ‘Really feel it – emote like Elvis.’ There’s also games like pretending to be someone else, connecting to the community and greenery by guerrilla gardening, or going back to basics and writing a letter.
And of course, ‘Own it.’ Because this life is yours, and no one else’s. And to fully experience it, you have to wake up. Dedicated to ‘all the crazies, the weirdos and the freaks…everybody who knows that this is the most extraordinary of lives and it is happening right now’ Wake Up is a great resource to help you shine.
You can find more about Wake Up and where to download it, here.