If you have been in a long-term D/s relationship for any length of time, you know that life throws us little curve balls from time to time that can affect our moods and overall enthusiasm for the play we enjoy. Of course, we all have our little practices here and there that help us stay “in role” throughout our days, right? A slave may hand her Master his cup of coffee in a certain way. Or, a Mistress may plant a kiss on her sub with her hand around his throat as a reminder of her position over him. I have my own little idiosyncrasies that I’ll throw into my everyday interactions with Mistress Oasis. But, we aren’t always in the correct mindset to drop what we’re doing and jump into a scene. If we are honest with ourselves, some of life’s little challenges can do a real number on our enthusiasm.
As I wrote about in this post, it’s perfectly okay if you’re not in a play mood. We subs and masochists rely on our mindset the most to allow us to perform in our roles. I’d say if you really cannot shake the “blahs,” or you cannot get the day’s stresses out of your head, then NOT playing is an acceptable choice.
But yesterday was Wednesday – the day that Mistress Oasis and I eagerly look forward to each week. Wednesdays are set aside as our weekly “play day.” That’s not to say that we don’t play on any other day or night. But, we have declared every Wednesday to be totally devoted to play. No matter what, we turn off the work computers. I get the play room and the rest of the house set up. Phones are turned off. All day and well into the night, we play, and love, and interact within our roles with no outside interruptions. We do nice, long, intense scenes with leisurely breaks in between. And, despite my stresses this week – yesterday was another awesome play-day with my Mistress.
If you are like me, it is difficult to just put down all the little demons in your life and keep them out of your head for several hours to indulge in BDSM play. But mindset IS crucial in our arena. And, the harder you play, the more important it is to not allow wayward thoughts into your head. Here are 5 methods I use when I want to get myself out of the emotional funk and into play mode.
- Give yourself permission – Remind yourself and accept that all of those problems that you are worrying about will be right there waiting for you again when you are finished playing, and that it is okay to put them on the proverbial “back burner” while you enjoy yourself for a little while. If you are a sub, perhaps it would help for your Dominant to verbally confirm that you have permission to set aside your worries for a while, and enjoy your time together.
- Schedule Play – Impromptu play and play with little warning can be fun. However, it gives you little time to mentally prepare if you are in a funk. Trying to “push through” and just perform despite your head not being in the game can really turn out bad. Just ask any masochistic sub. We feel like total failures when we have to use a safeword and make our Domme taper down the intensity. With a specific date and time established for a scene, you have more opportunity to mentally prepare and establish the necessary mindset.
- Ritualize – Come up with routines that signify your bond with your partner. Having certain rituals you do just prior to play is a great way to condition your mind and body. You can ritualize undressing, or having cuffs placed on. I have a particular leather collar I wear for play time. Only Mistress Oasis puts it on and takes it off. I assume a position on all fours for her to do this. Ritual. When my sensory deprivation hood goes on, I kneel on the floor in front of the couch and Mistress sits down to put it on me. Ritual. Other examples can be foot or back rubs, showering or bathing each other. Maybe doing some domestic chores is your thing. Over time, your mind associates the repeated ritual acts with the sensations and emotions you experience from the play. You’ll discover that just going through the rituals will stir emotions and arousal in you before you even get started with the play.
- Start with sex – If you’ve read either of my books, FemDom Dating or Energy and BDSM, you’ll know that I put a lot of emphasis on not making sex your primary focus in your BDSM endeavors. The rewards are well worth any “frustration” you might suffer. However, if you are with an established and regular partner, then sometimes a good roll in the hay prior to BDSM play can really get your juices flowing, and help you re-connect. But for you guys, hold back the orgasm. We tend to perform better when we’re “under tension.” I’ve had lots of Dommes proclaim that most male subs are pretty useless after a climax. I know I lose about half my pain tolerance with an orgasm. Even if I take some time for a re-charge, and play again, my pain threshold usually isn’t the same.
- Organize the play area – This aspect sort of blurs into the “ritualize” category. Certainly the act of organizing your play area can be ritualized. But, having your play area set up can help you avoid uncomfortable pauses in play that can pull you back out of the mood. Lay toys out neatly so each can be found easily. Pre-tie your tie points. Carabiners clips from Home Depot are cheap and handy for easy on / easy off subbie restraining. Adjust any straps, buckles, slides, or snaps on any accessories that have them so there is a minimum of fumbling when it’s time to put things on.
In the end, if nothing else works, you can always conclude that your head just isn’t right for play. But there are still non-play activities you can engage in within your dynamic. But over the years, I’ve found that, using the methods described above, I’ve gotten myself out of some pretty bad funks and enjoy some fantastic scenes.
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