How do you want your submission to grow over the course of this year?
The second question that I am focusing on in terms of my current submissive reflection is How do you want your submission to grow over the course of this year? For me, growth as as submissive is so important and feeling that I am able to grow, both personally and sexually, was one of the things that attracted me to a D/s lifestyle. Maintaining this sort of dynamic as a full time lifestyle isn’t easy. It takes constant work from both sides, as well as working together as a couple, but I really feel that it allows me to be the best version of myself that I can be.
The relationship between reflection and growth
Growth is at the heart of that. It is about having a standard you adhere to. It is about agreeing to have certain focusses and not allowing that to slip from the fore in terms of priorities. It is about not allowing life to get in the way of the things you want and how you would like your life together to be. In my opinion, personal reflection has to be integral to the process. Without it, your own growth as a submissive will be dependent on, or likely limited by, all of these other factors. If you don’t know what you want and need, what you are really striving for, how can it happen?
I think that within D/s there is a misnomer with regard to this. Often what we read would suggest that the Dominant is solely responsible for what happens, the focusses and the growth that comes as a result. While this may work in relationships which are not full time, from my experience this is unlikely within a married type dynamic. Even in a relationship with is not full time, if there are other aspects besides just play included in the power exchange, then the submissive will have to take an active part in the direction of travel.
Map readers rather than mind readers
This can only really come from considered reflection. You have to know where you want to go and have an idea of how you plan to get there. While Dominants in fiction are presented as being mind readers, in reality most are not. However, they are often very good map readers. They will lead the dynamic in a way which allows both parties to move towards a destination that has been agreed through ongoing discussion. Whether this agreement is stated in a formalised way, or more subtly, it will still be based on the submissive’s wants and needs, as well as those of the Dominant.
The discussion that you have will probably allow the areas of growth to be identified, but before that, I think that there needs to be some personal reflection. We change and are shaped all the time by the experiences we have, and so to simply state needs as an unchanging thing probably won’t work. Some needs might be over-arching – the need to please, for example, – but within that, there will be particular things to do to focus on in terms of how the overall goal is achieved. If this is not considered and communicated, then growth can be limited or curtailed.
My own submissive growth
This year, my main focus is to go deeper into my submission. That is really what this whole reflective project is about for me. I have always reflected on areas that came up, but I want to do a conscious audit of where I am now, and what I need to focus on to improve. I feel I have been waiting, in a sense, for HL’s Dominance to take me where I want to be. That makes sense in many ways as it fits with my submissive need for Dominance. I am at the point where I want to be surprised, I want to be caught off guard, I want to be challenged and to feel that I am being pushed.
But that can’t really happen while HL is trying to be the Dominant I want him to be. It has to come from him and I have to become the submissive he needs to compliment his Dominance. I am at that point where I need to give up more of the control that I retain; I retain it more by default than through choice. I don’t know if we need to move more into an M/s style dynamic but somehow my submission has to feed his Dominance more than it is doing now. Well if we both want to grow that is. I need to be less passive and more active, but I think I will have to employ different ways of doing that.
Finding a level of discomfort
In terms of submissive growth, it isn’t just that I want to go deeper, I think that I need it. I am comfortable where I am and that is not really what it is about. Growth doesn’t come from being comfortable. It comes from feeling a little bit of a push. While I am quite content in some ways to stay where I am because if feels safe and familiar, that isn’t how things were at the start. Over time, our D/s has become so much a part of who we are and how we interact as a couple that it can feel almost indiscernible. It is like we do it without thinking, and again, lack of thought and consideration won’t lead to growth.
I don’t want to feel out of control. I hate that and it is one reason that I cling to control so dearly. Rather I want to feel that I have given up control to HL. I want to feel more controlled by him. I think that this will allow us both to grow as Dom and sub, but also to grow together as a couple. I want to be the best version of myself I can be, but I also want our relationship to be the best it can be too. Currently we both know and acknowledge that there are areas we would like to work on and improve in, and we have identified some of these things through our regular discussion.
My aim this year is for my submission to grow through careful reflection. I want to be more active and more structured with this, in the hope that I can go deeper into what I want and need as a sub and communicate that with HL. I want to really take a long hard look at the areas where I feel that I want to grow and think about what I can do further these, on my own, not as a response to something HL sets up. Clearly this will be done in agreement with him, and he may chose to incorporate some of it into the Rules and Rituals that we use.
This isn’t about me taking over and doing what I want to do. This is about time spent thinking about what I can do in a positive way to allow submissive growth to take place. HL is still in charge, but I can support him by offering my submission more effectively. If I do this in a way which feeds his Dominance, and allows him to plan a course for us both where our individual and joint needs are met, then we will both benefit. D/s as a lifestyle has always seemed to me about a relationship where both partners play to their strengths so that you work together as a team, albeit with the Dominant partner as the lead. I think to grow that I need to fine tune the part I play in that.