My children are quite limited in their ability to cook, simply because I want and need that time in my kitchen to myself. It is my refuge from a day spent in the classroom or in doing things for my own children. I'll teach them how to cook someday, just not today. As we move through this new millennium, parents are caught in a bit of a catch-22. But still, place your open awareness on each part of the body. This is an exercise in mindfulness, an exercise in attention to the physical body. So first, begin by standing for a minute. You can have your eyes open, or you can have your eyes closed. Just place your mind, your light, your gentle attention, on each part of the body. At this point, you've stabilized the mind as best you can. You've called your attention to the present moment. You're almost ready to begin the formal practice of meditation. But before you begin, how should you sit? Always in meditation, in no matter what tradition you're taught, there's a lot of emphasis on a nice, straight posture so that you're not slumping and so the energy can move freely through your body. Anxiety, suffering, depression all leading to an end result, suicide and death. Though billions of humans are different in their beliefs and backgrounds one standard is agreed on by the fact that anyone can witness it. That is, if you're alive right now you have a reason to live that wins over the reason to die. That reason, as foggy as it may be, impacts every question you face in your life. From what foods you eat, will you have kids, where do you work, to what brand of dishwashing liquid you buy. People live life as buddhists, adrenaline junkies, wealth seekers, drug addicts and the list is endless.

Whatever they and you are doing now, remember, it all began with the answer or lack of one, to the question What am I living for? Answers to such questions go by many names like worldviews, belief systems or ideologies. We will call the answer, a philosophy. Throughout history, people have often turned to philosophy for advice on how to live life, as it's the one subject that asks repetitive Why? In his article Separation: Anxiety and Anger John Bowlby describes the effects of separation on the child, and the typical sequence of behavior that occurs whenever a child is separated from his mother or a substitute to whom he has become attached. The child is at first extremely distressed and tries by all means available to him to recover his mother'. <a href=''>His</a> distress is more or less intense depending on the relative familiarity or strangeness of his new environment and the people caring for him. <a href=''>Next</a> the child seems to lose hope of recovering his mother but nevertheless remains preoccupied with her and continues to watch for her return. <a href=''>Finally</a> he appears to give up hope entirely and lose all interest in his mother. <a href=''>Provided</a> the child is not separated from his mother for too long his attachment for her will re-emerge; <a href=''>Bowlby</a> explains that the same behavior in the child also results from emotional absence of the mother. <a href=''>If</a> the mother is with the child physically but withdraws from him emotionally or rejects him as a result of depression or preoccupation with other matters, or threatens to abandon him as a form of punishment, the child experiences the same distress as he would from physical separation. <a href=''>Various</a> studies have shown that small children explore with confidence and courage if their mothers are present, but become fearful and withdrawn in their absence. <a href=''>Monkeys</a> are similar to humans in both their attachment and separation behavior. <a href=''>The</a> neutral activity also involved crawling across a gymnasium mat, but the primary goal entailed rolling a ball to each other. <a href=''>Whether</a> the couples were only dating or long-married, the ones who did the shared novel activity were more likely than the ones who did the shared neutral activity to agree to statements like I feel happy when I am doing something to make my partner happy and I feeltingling' and `an increased heartbeat' when I think of my partner after the activity than before. Even more impressive was the fact that observers who viewed the couples having a conversation about their future plans judged those who had partaken of the exciting activity to show increased positive behaviors toward each other (eg, greater acceptance and less hostility) after the activity than those who had partaken of the mundane task. It's not difficult to imagine that for many couples, completing the crazy crawling assignment might provoke hysterical laughter. As corny as I sometimes find such exercises, I can't ignore the fact that they lead people to feel closer, warmer, and even more attracted toward each other. Surprisingly, the effects of even such brief activities can last for as long as seven hours.

Researchers surmise that shared participation in exciting and novel activities triggers positive feelings (eg, we might misinterpret the apprehension we feel while rock climbing as bolstered attraction),53 boosts couples' sense of interdependence and closeness (due to the collaborative aspect of many such activities, like the gymnasium mat crawling), leads us to learn new things about each other (as in a study that instructed couples to pick up cards with intimate questions on them and take turns answering them54), and generates positive emotions in general (eg, amusement, pride, curiosity, joy), which tends to color everything in our lives, including our marriages, in more positive, optimistic strokes. I'VE LOST THE PASSION, OR, GETTING USED TO SEX WITH YOUR SPOUSE Even in the happiest of marriages, after a while we no longer obtain the same happiness boost from spending time with our spouse--or with any of the accoutrements of marriage--as we once did. One of the unfortunate corollaries of this naturally unfolding process is that we also ultimately obtain less pleasure from marital sex.When we are in the throes of newfound heart-pounding passion, we are so much governed by our in-the-moment emotions, thoughts, and fantasies that we can't possibly imagine the day the intensity of those feelings will ebb. It is equally important that our diet provide the nutrients that the body needs to repair and rebuild these muscle groups before we again tax them. Most experts suggest 48 hours of recovery time in order for a particular muscle group to fully repair after resistance training or some other muscle-taxing activity. This is the reasoning for only 3-4 days weekly of high-intensity exercising. However, this does not mean that you should only exercise every 3 days. By rotating which muscle groups you use during a particular routine, you can isolate certain muscle groups while letting the others repair and rest. Adding variety to your exercise routines will ensure that your muscle groups have enough time to recover and keep your routine exciting Caution: Snow Shoveling Heart attacks, back strain, and muscle soreness are just a few of the problems associated with shoveling snow. Snow shoveling is very demanding on the body. What makes shoveling more dangerous than other average tasks around the house is the temperature. They are preoccupied with the anticipation of dangerous situations, forever scanning the horizon for future threats or pain. Depressed people often focus on the past and obsess on the theme of loss. They also focus on their own failings and flaws. Chronically angry people repeat automatic thoughts about the seemingly deliberate hurtful behavior of others. Preoccupation with these themes creates a kind of tunnel vision in which you think only one kind of thought and notice only one aspect of your environment, resulting in one predominant and usually quite painful emotion. Aaron Beck has used the term selective abstraction to describe this type of tunnel vision in which you look at one set of cues in your environment to the exclusion of all others.

AUTOMATIC THOUGHTS ARE LEARNED Since childhood, people have been telling you what to think. You have been conditioned by family, friends, teachers, the media, and others to interpret events a certain way. Over the years, you have learned and practiced habitual patterns of automatic thoughts that are difficult to detect, let alone change. Most people are afraid to confront and embrace their darkness, but it is in that very darkness you will find the happiness and fulfillment you have been longing for. When you take the time to discover your whole self, you'll open the door to true enlightenment. One of the biggest pitfalls of the Information Age is the I know that syndrome. Knowing often prevents us from experiencing through our hearts. Shadow work is not intellectual; Many on the path to self-improvement believe they have completed the process but are unwilling to see the truth about themselves. Most of us long to see the light, and to live in the beauty of our highest self, but we try to do this without integrating all of ourselves. We can't have the full experience of the light without knowing the dark. The dark side is the gatekeeper to true freedom. Each of us must be willing to continually explore and expose this aspect of self. The decoy warriors who participated in the all-important ruse to lure the soldiers performed to the level of their own skills and experience, and exhibited the kind of character that wins battles. Still, it is safe to say that some, if not most, of them performed above and beyond the call of duty simply because of the reputation and actions of the man leading them. That kind of well-earned respect characterized leadership in Lakota society and allowed them to fulfill a critical purpose or achieve a difficult objective without the weight of authority. It is widely assumed by those who know--or think they know--the story of Crazy Horse that he became a leader only because of his exploits on the battlefield. Yet while it is true that he certainly brought attention to himself through his bravery, especially when he placed himself in harm's way to turn the tide of battle or go to the aid of a fellow warrior, his reputation and success as a leader also came from his ability to stay calm under the most difficult of circumstances. The rationale was that if a man could prove his mettle on the ground of combat while facing the prospect of injury and death, he probably had what it took to face the tough decisions of everyday life.

Every Lakota village in pre-reservation days was a small town, and usually many of the people in one village or community were related by blood or marriage. Therefore, everyone knew about everyone else. Adults had the opportunity to watch all the children in the community as they grew and matured. The positive aspect of such scrutiny was that people knew intimately the family background and character of each new generation. Turn to a professional. If you're comfortable opening up to your OB, midwife, doula, or counselor, they could be helpful in determining how best to help you. Contact a national agency. The phone number for the National Domestic Violence Hotline is easy to remember for a reason--commit it to memory and call when you need someone to talk to or you'd like to discuss local resources, including an escape plan. The number is 1-800-799-HELP (7233). TOOLS FOR YOUR RELATIONSHIPS During your pregnancy and as you welcome your baby into your life, her presence will naturally shift your other relationships. All of a sudden this new being has appeared and, as if out of nowhere, become the axis around which everything else spins. Aside from your partner, this little baby is now your number one relationship--and that can be quite a change for both you and your community. Navigating that shift can be tough and even painful as your focus shifts and changes from what you've previously known. Just take a look at a school you know. Notice the many rules that prohibit kids from doing this or that. It's obvious that whoever created the school system proceeded from the assumption that no one chooses to go to school: they go because they have to. Actually, if the schools were alive and had courses and teachers that sparked the kids' imaginations, you couldn't keep the kids away from school. The fact is that children want to learn and, in their early years, hunger and thirst for knowledge. But we create schools based on the false assumption that kids don't want to learn.