HL and I were discussing goals for our D/s this morning. From that, I decided to reflect a bit and wrote a post for The SWC about setting goals which I hope to make into a Dom sub workbook. Having started the task myself, I realise that what I have done so far, will actually make for a quite a lot of reflection so I am going to break it down into three parts. The first part was to think about your Dominant or submissive traits and qualities.
This is something we have talked about during chats on the site before and it can be something that people find hard. But I think it is difficult to set goals and focus on areas of growth without considering what sort of submissive you are. This will depend on your strengths and the areas which you find difficult, but by doing this, you can find ways to make the most of the good, and improve in areas where you struggle. So here goes to part 1.
What sort of submissive are you?
1. What are your Dominant or submissive traits and qualities?
I am a people pleaser and I enjoy making people happy. I have a lot to give and I want to share with others around about me who I care about. This makes me a good submissive as to have my focus on someone else really works for me. I also respond to praise and to knowing that I have pleased so the good girl sort of response works well for me too.
I like to feel that things are in control. This is a bit of double edged sword and so control will be part of my response to question 2 as well. On the plus side I have a need for control which means that I am never happier than when I am able to relax and give in and let HL take the lead. It allows me to feel calm when I hand things over to him or feel that he is in control.
I like to try new things and to feel excited and a bit naughty. This fits well with the sexual side of my submission. I am naturally submissive in bed but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t things I would like to do. I just don’t find it easy to push for those and really articulate my wants. I am happier to follow and although that has led to not really being sexually fulfilled in previous relationships, the discussion that I have with HL means that my needs are met by him.
Anyone who follows my blog will know that I am very reflective and have a good level of self awareness. Knowing yourself is a good thing for a submissive because it means that you are able to grow from your own reflection. I set myself high standards and hold myself accountable which works well when I am accountable to someone else.
I am also fairly good at understanding others and having empathy with them. I can put myself in someone else’s shoes and am able to see things from their point of view. Again this is a positive thing for submission. Actually I am an empath so at times, the taking on of others’ emotions can be a burden. This is something that HL supports me with and so as long as I communicate with him about how I am feeling, he is able to help me.
I have pretty strong communication skills. I don’t think these are necessarily submissive qualities but they are helpful for D/s. Being able to communicate you own thoughts and feelings and listening actively to your partner is a huge help.
I understand how trust works which allows me to show my own vulnerability. This is essential if you are going to submit to someone because you have to be able to trust them and to be vulnerable for them. These are things which I have probably learnt along the way and I think I have grown in terms of how I approach this.
One thing I have always had is a strong sense of purpose. I enjoy having a cause and will work tirelessly for that. Essentially I enjoy serving and feeling that I have made a difference. My life is pretty much set up in this way now and I apply this to all areas whether it is work, home or even online. I want to do things for others and enjoy the way that it makes me feel.
I appreciate clear boundaries and following rules well. I love knowing what I am meant to be doing and, as long as it is not something which is pointless or stupid, I will do it gladly. I prefer to have clear direction and guidelines to work within. I have chosen a profession which is very regimented in terms of the way that things are done. Clear expectations and accountability are a big part of that and I respond well in the sort of environment.
Respect is really important to me. I believe that respect should be earned but also that it should be a natural default. I see an increasing lack of respect around me that I struggle with. I enjoy being respectful within my relationship and expect that from other family members too. We have worked together to bring our children up to be respectful people and even as they move into adulthood and there are the inevitable clashes, they are still respectful.
2. What are the traits and qualities you have which can be a barrier to being Dominant or submissive?
I have already mentioned my need for control as being a double edged sword. While it means that I am never happier when someone I trust is in the lead, I need there to be a lot of control. If there is a gap then I will fill it, usually by micromanaging and becoming stressed. This makes me very hard to manage and can be pretty negative in terms of my submission because I need a very strong Dominant who will take no nonsense from me and make me feel like they have everything covered. Which is clearly hard to do.
I am fiercely independent. This sounds like it would make submission impossible. I think that realistically it can be worked with, but I am not like the stereotypical depiction of a submissive. I have written about being an independent submissive before and I don’t think I can change that part of me. I also don’t really think that HL would want me to, although I am sure there are ways that we could make me easier to work with. I think I will note this one for a goal!
Being a deep thinker is something I think is a positive in terms of reflection but it can also be challenging. I find it to hard to switch off. My mind is constantly on and I find it hard to stop thinking even when I know that I don’t have to or when I really shouldn’t. I second guess things, I question and I can be off putting. This coupled with my sense of purpose can give me an approach with caution sort of badge which can really mess things up for HL.
When I feel unsure, anxiety kicks in and I can be very sneaky about getting out of things. Essentially I am a wriggler and I do it pretty well. This is not one to be proud of though and it doesn’t work well with submission or aid my need to be Dominated.
My need for Domination is greater than my need to submit. I am naturally submissive in the bedroom but not in other areas. I choose to submit to HL but not really to anyone else. I wouldn’t trust anyone like that or to have my back. Even with HL, I don’t submit in the way that I thought I would at the start. Essentially my thoughts are not submissive. I respond to being Dominated and to my boundaries being pushed and those things will trigger a submissive headspace for me.
I think that without that mindset, I submit through choice rather than through nature. This is something that is difficult for HL because sometimes he wants me to respond without thinking. He wants me just to do it because he has asked me to, whereas I lean towards knowing a why, or at the very least more about the what. I will do what he asks of course, but I think he senses my reluctance sometimes.
This leads to the next in that sometimes being told what to do grates on me. Rather than my response being yes of course, it is still either why or I don’t really want to. I do it, but the submissive joy in doing it is missing. It comes along usually after a time but I see that this is off-putting to the one giving the instruction or the request. Temper this with my offer of a different way of approaching it and this is quite an annoying anti-submissive trait, even for me.
I will admit to being a bit of a perfectionist. My need for perfection and they way it limits my submission is explored in Keeping up with Miss Perfect. While it is something I have always lived with, it doesn’t make things easy submission-wise.
The final thing which has made things hard for us and had an impact on progress has been my body image issues. These are very real and can border on dysmorphic. They are based on the remnants of an eating disorder and while that is well managed and in the past now, my disordered thinking can still be an issue. HL has worked hard at pushing me in this area and I have made great progress but it is still a barrier to some of the things he would like me to do so it seemed worth acknowledging here.
So there we have it. Quite a long list of positives and negative qualities which have an impact on my submission. I am actually quite surprised looking at the list as there seems a lot to work with here. I can use this for a conversation with HL about what things we will work on though and I think it will be helpful for him, especially when we move to the part of the task where he outlines the sorts of things he wants from my submission.
Until now we have probably had a less structured approach to the things we have decided to work on so it will be interesting to see if doing it this way provides more clarity and focus. I certainly hope so. I don’t think there is anything here that I wouldn’t be glad to work on and to improve so I hope there will be some overlap between both of our thoughts.