Archive for August, 2014

play

August 10th, 2014

When a newcomer attends SLAA (Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous) meetings for the first time, it’s like learning a foreign language.  Unlike chemical dependency, the 12step programs focusing on sex, food and money are not emphasizing abstinence  but instead are focusing on integrating these life-affirming parts of life in healthier ways and in moderation.  In SLAA, it’s suggested to identify one’s bottom-line behaviors so a newcomer can start to count time away from the self-destructive, life-depleting behaviors.

On the flip side of bottom-line behaviors are top-line behaviors or those actions one can take that truly are life-affirming and life-enhancing.  I believe that it’s nearly impossible to stay away from bottom-line behaviors unless top-line behaviors are being introduced and cultivated.  Top-line behaviors  might include time with friends, activities in nature or establishing a meditation ritual.

As I leave for vacation next week, I am reminded once again how play is essential for me to achieve more balance in my life and to stay fresh within my practice.  Because I tend to be more serious than playful, it takes mindful attention to unwind and lean into the ease of play, reading a good novel and being with old friends.  I have to remind myself that it’s time to relax and give myself the gift of letting myself truly enjoy the love around me.  Ultimately, receiving love is one of the greatest gifts of recovery so I’ll pack that intention with me as I unplug for my yearly summer retreat.