August 15, 2014

Self Improvement


I once had someone tell me that my blog was BDSM mixed with Dale Carnegie.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with him, he was one of the pioneers in the self help industry.  His most famous book, How To Win Friends and Influence People, is one of the most quoted interpersonal works in this industry.  When this individual told me this, I took it as a compliment.  There are plenty of resources out there which talk about how to tie someone up or what it means to serve.  However, few tend to stray into those matters which we deal with on a daily basis.  I try to do this in my posts.

BDSM Is About Life

I see many use the term "lifestyle" when it comes to BDSM.  In fact, this is a term I often use because it is something we all understand.  Nevertheless, it is a bit misleading in the sense that BDSM is not a lifestyle but, rather, life.  Each of us is living our lives how we see fit.  Entering this realm did not suddenly remove us from the everyday interactions that we had previous.  Most of us still get up and go to work.  Others have family to deal with, both the positive and negative.  Financial issues affect us the same as everyone else.  We encounter loss while enjoying success.  Everything the average person encounters is the same as us.

Of course, we know BDSM is a bit different road than the traditional world.  To start, we structure our relationship in a different manner.  The vanilla world operates mostly upon the myth of equality.  Actually, that is a bit of a misleading statement because it really does not operate on this, just promotes it.  The world is truly run by those with power and, quite frankly, they do not share.  We see the power brokers everywhere from politics to the media to Wall Street.  We only need to look at the energy the 99% movement generated a few years ago to realize that most are on the outside looking in.  If equality was truly the model, those demonstrations would never occur.

Within the context of BDSM, we openly embrace the fact that equality does not exist.  Our relationships are structured based upon an exchange of power where one is in control with the other being controlled.  It takes both parties to complete a BDSM relationship utilizing all the interpersonal skills that are paramount to relationship success in all walks of life.  This is not exclusive or non-inclusive to BDSM.  In that regard, we are the same as everyone else.

At the same time, we can achieve depths that few can reach.  Because of the openness and trust factor of the BDSM relationship, this type of interaction tends to far surpass that of the traditional model.  When I discuss the core of an individual, that is the place that we all seek to connect at.  My experience and observation is that this level is not achieved in most vanilla relationships.  Ultimately, it takes great strength to give one's life over to another while those person taking her on accepts tremendous responsibility.  This is something that is non-existent in an equal parity structure.

That being said, the simple fact is that life is still life.  We deal with all the same issues as everyone else.  Entering BDSM does not exempt us from any of the trials and tribulations that others experience.  To believe so is engaging upon fantasy.  BDSM is life...that is all.

CANI

This is an idea that Tony Robbins touts quite regularly.  CANI stands for constant and never ending improvement.  I can not think of something more applicable to the BDSM world than this idea especially after reading thousands of submissive profiles over the years.  One of the common complaints is that dominants do not learn.  In talking with many over the years, I learned that many BDSM relationships end simply because the sub/slave outgrows the dom/master.  It is sad to think how one gets involved with someone but, because of his refusal to grow, the relationship ultimately dies.  Of course, what is truly disheartening is this is often caused by arrogance and laziness.

The truth is there is always something new for us to learn.  Whether one is a sub or dom, this idea applies equally.  Life is a constant, unfolding situation with new events continually arising.  Over time, our life changes and we become different people.  If attention is not paid, it is easy for those in a relationship to "grow apart".  Therefore, it is incumbent upon each individual to embracing both personal growth and the growth of the relationship.

Before going any further, I must state that this concept applies to a great deal more than your "BDSM talents".  When I say growing within the confines of BDSM, most automatically think of the ability to ties one up or getting into electrical play.  While these are wonderful skills to acquire and develop, they are not the major part of the deal.  Instead, we need to look deeper at the type of people we are and where our hangups are.

To start, my observation is that most submissive types are overrun with fear.  It is a major element within them.  As a dominant, it is your responsibility to remove this fear.  The question is are you skilled at this?  Are you able to recognize it when it arises?  Can you see it in her eyes?  Or do you add to it with your immature approach to BDSM by behaving in domineering ways?  At the same time, how are you at the psychological aspects of slavery.  While many ask for this, few can fulfill it since they truly do not understand how the mind works.  At the same time, do you have the ability to control yourself emotionally and the discipline to do what is required?  A dominant is one who is to lead the relationship.  However, it is hypocritical and destructive for one to tell another to do something he, himself, cannot do.

It is a simple truth that we all have things we can work on.  None of us are perfect nor all knowing.  There is always something else to uncover and explore.  Usually, we are given signs each day of what required attention simply by observing how we react.  If one is continually exploding and entering into a state of rage, this is a signal perhaps some underlying anger needs addressing.  Or if one finds herself repeatedly crying throughout the day, then it might mean that something is amiss.  Either way, everyone has something to concentrate upon.

Yes, it is wonderful to be involved in the world of whips and chains.  Nevertheless, it is vital to remember that even the most skilled dominant in terms of BDSM play can be a total prick to live with.  In fact, judging from the egos I witness, I feel this is a factual statement.  Long term BDSM success means that we are able to interact with a variety of people on many different levels.  Over time, we encounter people from many different backgrounds and experiences.  Some come to us with things such as depression or self worth issues.  Others were abused.  Most tend to stuff things meaning there are plenty of issues to work through.  Fear, insecurity, and negative projections are frequent escorts along the life journey and necessitate constant attention.  Trust, or lack of, is a major factor for most meaning that dominant needs to be consistent in his actions and responses; failure to acquire this ability will only magnify the distrust.

BDSM is a journey within.  Too many focus upon the BDSM relationship, especially when new.  They get so wrapped up with the idea of getting with someone that they miss the most crucial aspects which is their own development.  It is paramount that before one is able to fully give to another, he or she must develop something within oneself.  BDSM, while similar to the traditional world in many ways, is also a different cup of tea.  Therefore, consistent internal exploration is necessary if one is to grow and prosper in this way of life.  Ultimately, to me, BDSM is about becoming the best people we can be and this is achieved by always improving ourselves and, in turn, our relationships.

DN 

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