There are five types of restlessness.

The first type of restlessness is due to the place you are in.

When you move away from that place, the street or the house, you immediately feel better. Chanting, singing, and laughing can change this atmospheric restlessness. If you chant and sing, the vibration in the place changes.

The second type of restlessness is physical restlessness.

Eating the wrong food or vata-aggravating food, eating at odd times, not exercising, and overworking can all cause a physical restlessness. The remedy for this is exercise, moderation in work habits and going on a vegetable or juice diet for one or two days.

The third type of restlessness is mental restlessness.

It is caused by ambition, strong thoughts, likes or dislikes. Knowledge alone can cure this restlessness: seeing life from a broader perspective, knowing the Self and realizing the impermanence of everything. Knowledge of your death or life, confidence in the Self, in the Divine, can all calm down this mental restlessness.

The fourth type of restlessness is is emotional restlessness.

Any amount of knowledge does not help here. Only meditation or spiritual practices can help. All the emotional restlessness vanishes after practicing meditation. The presence of your guru, a wise person, or a saint will also help to calm your emotional restlessness.

The fifth type of restlessness is rare. It is the restlessness of the soul.

When everything feels empty and meaningless, know you are very fortunate. That longing and restlessness is the restlessness of the soul. Do not try to get rid of it. Embrace it! Welcome it! Usually to get rid of it people do all sorts of things— change places, jobs or partners, do this, do that. It seems to help for some time, but it does not last. The restlessness of the soul alone can bring authentic prayer in you. It brings perfection.