Submission is not always easy.
In fact, I think that is precisely the reason why we Tih's frequently desire deeper dominance. It is one thing to say, "I will obey you," and take that responsibility on our own shoulders. It is easier for me to obey knowing my disobedience will earn me a trip over my husband's knee (thanks for the help, honey!).
But if we crave dominance, making choices to submit ourselves is crucial. Submission is a gift, freely given. It is a choice. Submitting is not something another person can make us do.
A good Hoh knows how and when to assert his dominance. He knows when to be merciful, and when to be firm. He knows when a stern word, a gentle touch, or a sound spanking is in order. I am blessed beyond measure to be in the hands of such an Hoh, so I see first-hand the daily communicating, give and take, and effort that such a dynamic requires of both parties.
And one thing I learned early on was that submission brings about dominance. Without the conscious choice to submit, dominance does not bring about peace, and security. Without voluntary submission, dominance will be ineffective.
Submission requires humility. It is trusting ourselves to the authority of another. It says, "I love you enough to put myself in your hands."
So how can we cultivate our own submissive mindset? There are many ways, and I am still working on this myself. I hope to journal a bit more about cultivating a submissive mindset over the next few weeks. But today, I'd like to suggest one very simple little thing. Two simple little words: May I.
A month or so ago, Jason and I were taking the kids out for the day. It was very warm out. I chose to wear a long, dark, lightweight skirt. It is one of my favorite things to wear in the summer because it is airy and comfortable, and it makes me feel feminine. But before we left, Jason noticed I had it on, and it looked warm to him.
"It's warm out," he said. "Why don't you go up and put a pair of shorts on instead. I'll be in the car with the kids." And he began to walk to the door.
Now I know why he said this. He didn't want me to be too hot. He wanted me comfortable for the day. The man has never worn a skirt! He has no idea my choice was more comfortable. He was trying to look out for me, not control me.
But I respect him. I had a few choices. I could've blindly obeyed him and put on a pair of shorts (though I find those less comfortable). I could've argued the point. But instead, I wanted to tell him I was comfortable while still deferring to his leadership. So I simply said, "I'm actually much more comfortable in this skirt. May I just wear this instead?"
He looked at me in surprise, smiled, and said, "Oh! Of course hon," and off we went.
A very small example, but I use it to demonstrate the power of those words May I?
Asking permission is making the voluntary choice to submit.
I use this phrase often.
"May I get you a drink?"
"May I ask you a question?"
When I need to talk to him about something, instead of saying, "Can we talk?" or "I have something to tell you," I almost always say, "May I talk to you about something?" I think it shows respect, but moreover, it is a reminder to me that I've chosen to put myself under his authority.
He gets a certain look in his eyes when I say "May I." It's hard to describe...his eyes soften. He looks at me as if I'm someone to be cherished. And when he opens his arms to me, and says, "Of course you can," I feel loved. I feel like he's let me in. I've submitted to him without his ever having to assert his dominance. It's tells him, "I trust you. I defer to you. I've put myself in your hands."