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February 2017

Mind KEY / 2017 / February
our inner child reflects into adulthood

Wrapping up Relationships: February’s issue in review

We have a relationship with everyone we meet—whether we like it or not.  Navigating relationships is at the crux of humanity.  When we are on point in our relationships, we feel great!  When our relationships are suffering—whether that is our relationship with ourselves, a troublesome family member, or a romantic interest—everything else suffers. Building healthy and productive relationships helps us in every aspect of our lives. That’s why, this month, we chose to tackle the concept of relationships from a variety of angles—discussing everything from our relationship with ourselves, to sex and intimacy, and even our relationship with the paranormal.  Here’s a peek into what we found. Sometimes a mentor is all you need to grab your dreams. Mind Key strives to be that boost for young...

Helping spirits–White Raven Investigates our relationship with the Paranormal

by Vera Remes As a shamanic practitioner, I have become familiar with the concept of “helping spirits"--those known to assist humanity. I have come to depend on them when I am involved with healings specifically.  But there is a yin to this yang.  Opposing the helping spirits are troublesome entities that can create havoc, sometimes referred to in shamanism as “akura.”   This is where spiritual investigations come into play. Whether a healing or a haunting, these negative spirits exist and can affect the living in many physical or spiritual ways.  We each have our guides and helping spirits who, just like us, are stronger together than apart.  When navigating them, it’s best to evaluate your relationship to yourself and your surroundings, and then call in help. What the...

sexual dysfunction is usually stemmed in spirituality and energy issues

Sexual dysfunction: A physical or energetic representation of health?

by Dr. Lisa Avila [caption id="attachment_5543" align="alignright" width="244"] To truly express our sexuality, we must release any latent judgements we may have been conditioned to believe about what’s acceptable or unacceptable sexually. Art by Sean David Wright[/caption] When I first read this quote by Caroline Myss, one of my earlier teachers and mentors, I didn't know what to do with it. Most of my life has been devoted to finding the root causes of what ails the body and the mind. As a healthcare practitioner, I found endless opportunities to explore the validity of the above quote. Later in my career, I spent time exploring the bridges between physical discomfort, emotional/spiritual distress, and body chemistry balance. In examining sexual dysfunction, I learned that the interplay between sex...

monogamy and std testing are not mutually exclusive

STDs—Don’t let your long-term relationship fool you

by Melissa Casiano, student writer at William Paterson University, NJ Everyone understands the importance of getting tested regularly for sexually transmitted diseases. However, the discussion is usually associated with couples who are starting out, people who are sexually “free,” or when people are suspicious of their partner. Veteran couples, on the other hand, tend to forget about sexual health altogether, due to the fact that they trust their partner and haven’t been with anyone else. Monogamy and STD testing don't normally go hand-in-hand, but the landscape on this might change.   Why get tested? ​According to the CDC, symptoms sometimes take years to appear for some sexually transmitted Diseases (STDs), and because some diseases, such as herpes, can sometimes be mistaken for other conditions. Many couples get tested once...

women in cloaks by Alma Carel

Sex in two worlds: A Middle Eastern perspective on intimacy

By Colleen Jennings If you are from a Western country, you probably have never stopped to consider the amount of contact you have with the opposite sex throughout the course of your daily life. You went to school with boys and girls and spent all your days with friends and family members of both sexes. Sex, and the understanding of it, is flavored by each of these experiences and encounters. However, if you grew up in the Middle East sex no longer looks the same, as contact with members of the opposite sex was most likely severely limited. How does understanding this perspective offer our more open culture insight into improving the quality of the sexual experiences? In most Middle Eastern countries—but particularly in the more conservative,...

teaching kids intimacy and healthy relationship boundaries

Teaching your teen about healthy relationship boundaries

by Charla Dury As a mom of growing young men, I struggle with parental boundaries.  It is difficult to know when (and how) to give my kids advice about romantic relationships, let alone teaching kids about intimacy. I enjoy watching my boys happy in their relationships, but as with the rest of life, that’s not always the case.  I’ve also watched with disappointment as each of my boys have cultivated codependent tendencies. Knowing that they learned these relationship “moves” from me and their dad makes me sad. As a parent in today’s society, we’ve all heard that kids learn by example. It has never been more apparent, however, than it is when watching as your child makes the mistakes you had hoped that they didn’t see.  The times...

Intimacy and wellness: Your relationship with sex

[caption id="attachment_5499" align="alignright" width="300"] relationships are an interesting dynamic of health, emotion, spirituality, and our perception of the world. Image by JoAnna Schillaci[/caption] Sex affects, and is affected by, our health, our personal belief systems and our relationship with those we love most.  This interplay makes sex not only a pivotal player in any intimate relationship—but also one of the most talked about relationship topics within our society.  At the same time, sexual intimacy is rarely a subject discussed with much depth. This week, The Daily Key strives to break the boundaries of the sex conversation. We are going deeper with discussions on how the relationship with our health, our beliefs, and our cultural upbringing affects our sexuality as individuals, and as a society. To launch the discussion, Ojanae...

better sleep means better health

How many all-nighters are too many–your relationship with sleep

By Mary Thorpe, Fall 2016 graduate of William Paterson University, N.J. As a young adult, I am told to enjoy college, because it, “doesn’t get much better than this.” The advice, however, prompts me to think the opposite: stress, hard times, and lack of sleep associated with the college years. Stress and sleep have a delicate relationship. Getting better sleep can go a long way in alleviating the affects extreme stress and sleep deprivation can have on mental health. Stress and sleep in college students Studies from the 2015 National College Health Assessment show that 30% of college students felt stress had a negative impact on their academic performance. A whopping 85% said that they have felt “overwhelmed by all they had to do” within the last twelve...

Love locks in Prague--long distance relationships

There is strength in distance: The benefit of long distance relationships

by Rebecca Pall Relationships are a wonderful and beautiful thing, but keeping things special can be a gray area when it comes to long distance relationships. I started a relationship in the beginning of May, but went away on a travel program for six weeks in the middle of June.  Before I left, there was a question of whether or not the relationship would last, or if the distance would be too much for us to handle. The relationship lasted, thanks to the help of technology and social media, but may not have been as successful if we didn’t have technology to assist us.   What it means to be in a long distance relationship [caption id="attachment_5441" align="alignleft" width="300"] Social media and technology can actually bring you closer if you...

positivity is all attitude

Changing your relationship with the world: The Power of Positivity

by Paola Scaduto, Mind Key intern and Fall 2016 graduate of William Paterson University, N.J. Are you happy? Do you have good energy around you and do positive situations occur for you? Are you depressed? Do you feel like your negative feelings might result in negative situations? Positivity is important for not only us, but for those around us. Self-help gurus talk about manifestation In his book, “The Light in the Heart,” Roy T. Bennett writes, “The more you feed your mind with positive thoughts, the more you can attract great things in your life.” Barbara Frederickson writes in her landmark paper that negative emotions are when extreme, prolonged or contextually inappropriate behaviors, “produce many grave problems for individuals and society, ranging from phobias and anxiety disorders, aggression and...

marginalized-- Susan Jacoby

Overcoming helplessness in a victimized world

by Dr. Lisa Avila In chiropractic school, a teacher I liked very much mentioned that he found people came into the office in clusters—a cluster of people with shoulder issues, a cluster of low back pain issues, a cluster of digestion issues. One year into private practice, I had already seen this to be true.   Recently, the cluster of issues presenting is people feeling marginalized. This trend has persisted every day since last summer, so much so that it has been hard to ignore. Some have used that word, marginalized, and some have used similar words that convey the same message. Some have cried, and some have been very angry. And everyone, all of them, have brought up random moments of being abused within their personal histories.   Imagine?...

how we relate to ourselves leaves us either connected, or alone

Live and Let Live: A philosophy for strong relationships

by Vera Remes [caption id="attachment_5425" align="alignleft" width="206"] art by Kennedy Shenberg[/caption] Everyone we meet, if only for a minute, we relate to in some way.  Think of yourself walking in the mall, throngs of people passing to the left and right.  You think very little about them, don’t even look them in the eye. You’re in live and let live mode. But if someone fell, would you step over them or help them up? If someone stole your wallet, would you chase them, struggle over it or let them have it since they must need it more than you.  Whatever you do, you are “relating”.     Personally, I like the “live and let live” way of being. I can honestly look at a situation unfolding before me--a parent...

letting go of toxic relationships

When relationships hold you back–Letting go of the limiting beliefs, not the connection

Toxic relationships take energy away from our personal path of growth. Ending a relationship that no longer serves us, however, can be a difficult journey. Someone once said to me, “Some people are easy to love, as long as they are in Australia.”  Some people I can only love as long as they live on Mars. The point is that sometimes toxic relationships make it impossible to do that which we love.  When that happens, we have two choices: try to change the relationship, or change the way we experience it. Wendy Watson-Hallowell, Mind Key’s own Belief Coach, shares how we can self-fulfill that which our relationships do not provide, and thereby forge a richer relationship with ourselves, and with those we love most.   Letting go of toxic...

our inner child reflects into adulthood

Looking in the mirror: All relationships reflect our relationship-with-self

The toughest and hardest relationship we will ever have in our lives is our relationship with self. The inner child that lives within has hurts and fears that dictate how we react and relate to others over the course of our lives. That which we dislike and have not embraced inside ourselves gets mirrored back to us by others we encounter. When we are upset by other people’s actions and words, we must look in the mirror to discover what we are not loving about ourselves.   Letting go of the past The more we let go of past hurts, not take things others do personally, forgive our faults and stop believing untruths about ourselves based on what others have told us, the better off we will be. When...

attachment style is formed in youth, and follows us into adulthood

Heal the wounds of youth through romantic relationships

Falling in love means devoting energy into what another person is thinking or feeling. Research indicates that the childhood attachment style we develop have a lasting effect on our adult romantic relationships. Intimate partners often resemble either, or both parents in a variety of ways. Childhood experiences, whether positive or negative, impact the attachments formed in adult relationships, as discussed in a 2005 study published in the journal of Attachment and Human Development.   How childhood relationships affect intimacy as an adult According to the Center for Disease Control, 40-50% of first marriages end in divorce, meaning that few children witness healthy relationships and conflict resolution, leading many to fall into the same conditioned habits and behaviors of their parents. According to a review published by R. Chris Fraley of...

build the career of your dreams with Mind Key

Do you have what it takes to build the career of your dreams?

Since this month’s issue is all about relationships, we thought now was the perfect time to introduce Mind Key’s relationship with the future.  About a year ago, I cultivated a relationship with Martha Witt of William Paterson University.  Impressed with the Mind Key Project, Professor Witt asked that I speak with her capstone writing class about building a career in writing. What ensued was an assignment worthy of publication. That’s why, over the next few months, you’ll be seeing student pieces published in The Daily Key.  Each student was asked to pitch their story in detail. Upon approval of these pitches, they underwent several drafts. They submitted their final articles at the end of last semester. I have been working with the students, helping them find sources...

gutless and grateful

Self-discovery as a pathway to your dreams: the story behind “Gutless and Grateful”

February's issue is relationships. There is no better way to start than to share the story of how one amazing woman who lost everything to achieve true self-discovery. In doing so, she caught her dream in a way that could have never happened otherwise. By Amy Oestreicher I grew up doing musical theatre. Let me rephrase that. I grew up thinking my life was a musical. Call it the “theatre bug,” call me a “drama queen” or a great big ham--I lived for the world of the stage. Singing and acting were ways I could connect with the world around me. When I took a deep, grounded breath from my gut, I sang what my heart longed to express. I found comfort in the words of my favorite composers. Through theatre, I...

February’s Issue–Relationships: from business to love, and everything in between

Social interaction is a basic and essential human connection. Building healthy and productive relationships helps us in every aspect of our lives. What can we do when we can't seem to connect with others on the levels we desire? How do negative connections affect our physical, mental, and emotional well-being? Enter our theme for February -- Relationships. [caption id="attachment_5380" align="alignleft" width="300"] Photo Courtesy of Charla Dury[/caption] Relationships come in all shapes and sizes...