This is an evolving series in some of the things that it takes to be dominant. Please check out part 1 (here), part 2 (here), part 3 (here), and part 4 (here).
Today I am going to discuss something that ties into self esteem. I find that an important part of domination is being your own man and really not putting a lot of stock into what others think. Now, please bear in mind I am not referring to being a total jackass and running around like you know all there is to know. As the old saying goes, all our poop stinks. However, when one is truly confident, that is something that really appeals to those who are submissive. Confidence is a wonderful aphrodisiac.
We all know about the "bad boy" image and how many women are attracted to that. What is it that is the allure? Quit simply, bad boys are those who walk to their own beat. They are exciting, confident, and dangerous. Non-conformity is part of their essence while living life as they see fit. Their decisions are not based upon societal norms. Rather, they are individualistic in their views operating in a manner that society looks down upon. This freedom is very appealing to many.
How does this contrast with BDSM? Now I am not stating that one has to be a law breaker or suddenly live outside the bounds of society. In fact, this is truly an impossibility. As one who is involved in BDSM, I realize that a large aspect of my life is interacting with people on a daily basis who do not have the same views I have. Even though I am a "rebel" to the conditioning of society, as all people are who are in BDSM, I am conscious of the fact that it is not my place to force others to witness my choices. My rebellion, if you will, is in the mind as opposed to overt action.
I feel that all of us need to make our own choice regarding what we want from life. Entrance into BDSM shows one shed the beliefs, at least to a degree, of society, instead opting for a interaction structure that is not espoused by the mainstream. Many of us hit this point after bottoming out in the traditional model of relationships. Society has their own views which tends to be counter to that of BDSM. Obviously, those who questioned what they were taught growing up engage in a form of "mental rebellion".
That said, I do not feel it is enough for a dominant to simply cast off the ideas of society and feel that is it. Instead, that is but a first step. To truly dominate, one must have confidence in the path he is walking. It takes courage to not adhere to the ideas and beliefs of others. Naturally, an intelligent person will take the input from others, whether verbally or in writing, and process it. There are many others that we can learn from to enhance all areas of our lives. However, ultimately, one needs to make the decision of what works best for him (and those involved in his life). This can mean that one runs counter to some who are even in this lifestyle. Nevertheless, at the end of the day, it is how you live your life and the interaction you have on a personal level with those in your life that matters.
A common trait of societal conditioning is the idea of making what others think about you important. We see this with the advertising industry constantly. The entire premise of "keeping up with the Joneses" mirrors this. In essence, it is saying you are not enough unless you own this particular product and that message is delivered to all those around us. Image is everything meaning what others think about you is the central focus. Of course, this is total garbage but we are pounded with this idea from a young age. In fact, peer pressure plays an important role from our earliest of development years. Remember when having the right sneakers was vital and what happened if you had a pair that was considered outside the realm of acceptable. Ridicule is not a fun thing, something kids can be ruthless at dispensing. This mindset simply moved from sneakers to the right luxury car or house to live in. The only change was the price tag.
A true dominant will not fall prey to these tactics. He is his own man and does not need anyone else to tell him what choices to make. He realizes that he is enough on his own while his worth, as a person and a dominant, is not measured by the car he drives or clothing he wears. Now, I am not going to say that he does not enjoy the finer things in life. It is not uncommon for those in BDSM to be more successful financially than the average person. With this comes the ability to afford the nicer automobile or live in a bigger house. The point is the dominant will decide on these things because he wants them, not because he is concerned about what the neighbors think. Image is not everything to him. Instead, who and what he is receives the greatest emphasis. Enjoying his success in a material way is secondary to the person he is. In other words, he purchases or does those things that make him happy. Other people's views, especially strangers, mean nothing to him.
It takes great courage to live in this manner. At the same time, one needs to constantly check his motives when doing things. This is not an easy path to walk. The temptation to adhere to what society promotes is strong. We all have years of conditioning, something that did not stop upon entering BDSM. Madison Avenue is still bombarding us with ads and ideas that tie our self esteem to our net worth. Again, this is flatly rejected by our dominant. Like the bad boy I mentioned earlier, he is not concerned about the opinions of others.
Sadly, we see this idea brought into the lifestyle. Many like to attend events, parties, and conventions. For many, this is an enjoyable time to interact with those who are like-minded, to learn different things, and to feel a part of the community that we have. This is a wonderful thing for one to do if that is his or her ilk. However, the downside to this is there are some who attend the different gatherings with a different motivation. Instead of being there for community, we often see some who want to show off. In other words, their ego or esteem is tied to the viewpoints of others. One example that comes to mind is the master who has his two, young hard-bodied slaves on a leash walking throughout the convention or standing and posing for all to see. This was a situation that was relayed to me about a particular individual. It seems he tied great importance to having others look at him with envy. As first year psychology student will tell you this just screams of insecurity. Now, please tell me how domination and insecurity can co-exist? The answer is they cannot. Of course, it is fair to say that this simply could be the place this individual was at on his path and he will evolve over time. Nevertheless, I use this as an example of someone who is operating out of low esteem.
Let us contrast that with the old, BDSM veteran in a particular community. It is often not difficult to find someone who is in this way of life for many decades who still attends events I discussed. Unlike the aforementioned insecure dominant, the one I am referring to here shows up for the enjoyment and interaction. He goes about things without concern for the opinions of others. He is will liked and respected. His knowledge and experience is priceless, something that he is willing to share when asked. Overall, he tends to be a nice guy, interacting with those he is involved with as he sees fit and the community at large. His emphasis is on the connections and interactions he has, not on how he is viewed. Even though often skilled in a particular area of the lifestyle, he has a degree of humility about him. Naturally, he prefers to be liked but he understands not everyone will like him. He does not go out of his way to make himself seen. At the core, he comprehends his reason for being at the event and that true BDSM is lived in his home and through the day-to-day interactions with those under his care. To him, BDSM is more about who he is (and becoming) than the show or the scene that he puts on.
Therefore, I see great importance at working on developing the self awareness within oneself to really not care about the opinions of others. Again, I must stress, this does not mean that one walks around like a belligerent ass forcing others to accept his behavior. This is another sign of insecurity. A true dominant cares about others and their well being. He is not there to create problems or mischief. While not backing down when confronted, he will usually seek a resolution before something escalates. His ego is not tied to be viewed as being right. He knows that what is right and wrong is determined within him, not how others view it. His submissive(s) will be fully aware of this and, most likely, is there because she is drawn to that. Self doubt will creep in at times yet it is something that is quickly dispelled. His actions are designed to appease himself, the one(s) under his care, and those closest to him (such as family). Outside of that, the views of others are not given any consideration. He is his own man, confident, self assured, and honest in his intentions.
And that my friends is the part of the core essence of domination.
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14 hours ago