Thursday, January 23, 2014

Grace and Poise: Physical Poise

One of our biggest motivators as slaves - our driving force, if you will - is being pleasing. Whether or not we are currently serving a Master or Mistress, we want to be pleasing in all that we do and represent our Master (if we are collared) or ourselves (uncollared) in a manner that instills pride. And believe me, when you carry yourself with grace and poise, you are noticed... and only in good ways! :)

What are Grace and Poise anyway?

The New Oxford American Dictionary defines this beautiful characteristic as “graceful and elegant bearing in a person;“composure and dignity of manner;” and the last definition is “balance.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines poise as an "easy self-possessed assurance of manner" and a "gracious tact in coping and handling," cuing you in on the fact that poise isn't something vague or elusive. It's concrete knowledge rooted in confidence.

Why is confidence so important to poise and grace?

Confidence is reflected in our outward appearance all the time. If we are having a bad hair day, aren't feeling well physically, or are just feeling "off," there is a pretty good chance it can be perceived on the outside. This is why, often when we aren't feeling confident, others may ask "what's wrong?" or "Are you ok?"

The reciprocal can also be true: if we are feeling good on the outside, it can encourage our feeling more confident in our hearts and minds. This is why, when we are feeling down or "off," a good manicure, spa day, new outfit, etc. can lift our spirits and have us feeling more confident about ourselves... or maybe it's just me who loves a good mani!!!! :)

Physical

  • Posture:



One thing that always works to help me correct my posture and maintain it is to imagine a helium balloon attached to my head, lifting it, which makes me elongate my neck, push my shoulders back and create a nice posture.

What are some behaviors that show a lack of physical poise?

Some of the behavior tendencies that show a lack of poise are that a woman:

  • Can't stand still.

  • Paces the floor.

  • Sways back and forth.

  • Chatters nervously, using rapid and/or muffled speech.

  • Makes nervous gestures with her hands.

  • Fiddles with some gadget on her clothes.

  • Scratches her head.

  • Twists her skirt.

  • Marks aimlessly with a pencil.

Some women are the opposite of this. They're so self-conscious that they're TENSE. These women seem like frozen statues, blank and expressionless.

What are some ways you can enhance your physical grace and poise?
  • Breathe Deeply
Deep BREATHING, as an exercise and requisite to developing poise,
has a remarkable effect on a woman's emotions. A woman who takes
a good deep breath actually breathes in confidence and poise.

The woman who has to speak to a group will do much better if she
first fills her lungs with air. This technique gives both confidence and
breath-support.

  • Take Good Care of Your Appearance
Physical appearance acts as a stimulant to any woman's poise and self-assurance. If a woman knows that her clothes, hair, complexion and hands have all been well cared for, she's then free to forget her appearance completely.

Good grooming is essential for developing poise and self-confidence.
When you are self-conscious about how you look or don’t feel comfortable in your clothes or with your appearance, you cannot be poised as these things detract from your confidence. Dress your best to boost your self-confidence.  The rule of thumb (professionally) is to dress as if you were employed in one position higher than your present position.  When you feel that you look great, those thoughts and feelings translate to confidence that is seen in your physical body as you move throughout your day.

  • Follow Etiquette
For developing poise, a mental attitude of self-confidence in regard to matters of ETIQUETTE is essential. A woman must know the proper etiquette of every situation - so well, that she's never in a quandary as to what's correct or expected.

She should know the correct responses to every situation so well. that correct behavior's automatic.

  • Be (or act) confident - FAKE IT UNTIL YOU MAKE IT!
Every SHY woman should be mentally objective enough to realize that every other woman is also worried about what people are thinking of her!

Self-confidence may often be secured by thorough PREPARATION for an occasion. A girl who knows her lesson, and knows that she knows it well, will have at least a degree of poise when she recites.
  • Videotape Yourself

Most of our digital cameras or cell phones have that handy little function these days. Have someone videotape your walk, the way you sit, stand, talk, laugh, eat, drink. It is throught this awareness that gives us a better understanding. That understanding will help us edit both consciously and subconsciously.
  • Study the Way that You Walk

There is a misconception that girls think they have to strut like a model for a beautiful walk. Get rid of the supermodel walk. It is reserved for very few occasions, definitely not in your everyday walk.
My dance teacher once told me that for graceful posture, imagine a string in the middle of your chest putting upwards (gently) without over arching your back.
To be honest with you, after so many years, I'm still working on my walk! I have made progress in correcting some bad habits. So be patient with yourself.
About half a century ago, girls were taught how to walk. These lessons existed in schools, not specialty or finishing schools, but everywhere. I wonder why it is not longer a requirement to learn how to walk. Learning to walk is important. It teaches us how to breathe, sit and use our bodies ergonomically. It is for good health, helps our self confidence and esteem. It definitely projects elegance.
  • Exercise For Poise and Posture

I've noticed that people who exercise regularly do not seem to have problems of attaining good posture. With good posture, half the battle is won to achieve an elegant poise. Dancing helps too. Especially ballet and ballroom dancing.
  • Keep Your Arms To Your Sides

Another tip of how to develop poise is to keep your arms close to your sides as much as you can, in a relaxed way. When I took posture lessons, my instructor told us to constrict movements from your elbows as much as possible. Obviously don't stick your arms like glue to your slides. If your shoulders are hunched upwards, that's too close.
  • Never Ever Rush Or Be In A Hurry

To be poised to never seem like you're in a hurry, no matter what calls for it. Never walk too quickly, strut making loud sounds of your heels clicking against the boardwalk. Do not eat in a hurry, no matter how hungry or zip up your purse in a fast way. Be as quiet as possible and unhurried. No slamming of car doors, house doors, fridge door.
Obviously, this is harder than it looks especially in the fast paced society that we live in. If you find yourself hurrying everywhere, it is either due to poor time management or you could be simply doing too much. Slow down, select (root word of elegance is select) - elegance is afterall, a way of life.
  • Be Gentle

There is a certain kind of chic gentleness in being poised. Gentle and elegant gesturesincreases our beauty. Clothes are not the only 'covering' we wear.
It is much easier to be gentle when you are kind and tender. Gentle is an all emcompassing word. If you're gentle to little animals, you'll be gentle towards someone's feelings. You'll also probably not slam things around.
  • Smile Much, Laugh Softly

Similarly as gentleness is concurrent with devloping poise, being poised means having a gentle smile (ready and often) as well as soft harmonious laughter. Knee-slapping, hand-clapping, back slapping or laughter with mouth wide open does not contribute to poise. Laughing very loudly especially in a restaurant is not acceptable as well.
  • Watch Your Hands - Do Not Touch Or Fidget

Some of us have problems keeping our hands to ourselves. The problem of fidgety hands and wanting to touch everything, do something with our hands could be attributed to the problem of being 'unable to relax'. If you want to develop poise, train yourself to keep them relaxed and do yourself.
Don't be digging into your purse, looking at your iphone every 30 seconds, touching your face, hair. It is good to practice restraint. See also Elegant Gestures.
  • Have A Deep Respect Of Others and Things Around You

I've observed that women with elegant poise seem to have a deep respect of others and things around them. For instance, they tend to leave a place the way it was when they entered. They are not ones to touch things in another person's house. If they borrowed something, it would be in the exact condition (or better sometimes) when they received it.

They'll never be one of those that leave the hotel rooms in a complete mess just because they don't have to clean up. They won't drive a rented a car in a way they won't drive their own. You'll never catch them saying, "who cares? It is rented." They'll also never steal blankets from airplanes etc. See also How to be Classy:  http://www.elegantwoman.org/be-classy.html.

A poised young woman will never have attacks of nerves or be obviously angry or irritated. Like a modern geisha, she keeps herself SERENE, composed and unhurried!

The Practical “How-To’s”

Entering a Room

A poised woman will use a “pause” procedure when entering a room. She'll pause in the doorway, take a deep breath, as she looks over the room, then go directly to her destination.

If she attends a tea or a reception, she'll locate her hostess as she pauses in the doorway, then go directly to her.

'The pause' will do two things for her;

1. It will allow her to enter the room as if she were perfectly composed, for it has given her time to get a breath and to know exactly where she, and others, are.

2. The pause gives an ideal effect.

A poised woman will dress well for a social occasion, and always make sure to create an attractive picture - framed by the doorway. After she meets and greets the hostess, the poised woman will select a chair near some of the guests whom she has just met.

She'll then sit still in a natural, easy and relaxed manner while she talks.

She's not only poised, but well put together and  charming.

Descending stairs
Place a hand on the banister either for support or just for the awareness. Turn your foot and place it down sideways, almost parallel to the step. Avoid pointing your feet forward, unless the steps are very broad. Let the ball of your foot land first and then your heel — the opposite of how you'd walk in heels. Your body will automatically turn sideways in the direction of your feet. For an elegant effect, twist your torso and slightly angle your shoulders to face forward.
Standing right
Stand with your body erect, shoulder squared, and head held upright. Try to keep your body weight evenly distributed on both feet, with your legs together (or slightly apart for balance). You could have your hands falling loosely by your side. Another comfortable position for your hands, especially in formal or semi-formal wear, is when you're holding something in one hand — a bag, mobile phone or a drink. Use what's in your hand as a grounding object. If holding a glass, you could gently fold that hand at the elbow and let it rest alongside your stomach. Let the other hand fall beside you.
Tip: Correcting a stoop
Hold a pool cue stick at the back of your neck or tuck it in the small of your back under the arms. Says Hayden, "The first time I did this, my back immediately straightened up."
How to sit right
Sitting in a straight, elegant posture takes a lot of knee-kissing. But it's worth the effort since it won't just emphasise your presence, it will lend you an air of confidence. Once your physical presence is registered, your words will find a more receptive audience. Sit with your shoulders in a straight line, directly above your hips. While seated, lift your body from the waist upward. Stretch your spine as if it were held by an invisible thread at the top of your head. Keep your knees and ankles together. You could rest your feet on the floor or, better still, turn them slightly, together, to one side pointing away from you. Place your hands in your lap or the armrest.
Tips & tricks
- Avoid crossing and uncrossing your legs frequently, shaking your leg, tapping your foot or rocking your body while seated; it could make you look nervous, uncomfortable or self-conscious.
- Avoid sliding into a chair sideways. If need be, gently pull it towards you and position yourself in front of it.
Exiting a car
To step out of a car without flashing, especially in a short dress, first smooth out your outfit. With the hand that's on the inside, hold the edge of the seat or the dashboard for support. With your knees and ankles kissing each other, swing your legs out of the car and place them on the ground, swivelling your body along with your legs so that by the time your feet touch the ground your body's facing forward. Bending your head to avoid hitting it, raise yourself out of the car seat and stand up straight.
Cheat's guide to looking taller
Standing straight might seem like the normal thing to do when you're just walking around, but when it's picture time, it really doesn't do anything flattering for the frame. Take a hint from socialite diva Paris Hilton. When it's time for a picture, lean so that your body is curved, with an arc in your back. With your shoulders back and hips curved inward slightly, you instantly lose pounds off your body, appearing slimmer and upto three inches taller!
Posing for the camera
Even when taking frontal shots, angle your face slightly such that your best profile is facing the camera. If it's a professional photo shoot, look away at intervals, relax your facial muscles, collect yourself and turn back to the camera, refreshed.
The best way to smile for the camera, where the smile reaches your eyes, is to look directly into the lens and to think of someone or something that makes you feel happy. If you feel your smile is looking forced, take a minute's break and do some relaxing jaw exercises, then start again.
Imitate grace. One of the most fulfilling ways to learn the art of poised conversation is to find someone who has mastered it. Study her/him and watch how s/he guides conversation, responds to rudeness and carries her/himself. Then seek to imitate that grace in your own life.
Icons:

Marilyn Monroe:

Audry Hepburn:

Shout out to my gay brothers, Femmes, drag queens and transgender fabulous women:

Resources for this post, as well as some additional reading:










Thursday, December 5, 2013

Babygirls in M/s Dynamics

Babygirls (or babyboys) in M/s???? 

What is this???  

There are numerous misconceptions about babygirls in general and some might say that there is no room for babygirls (or Daddies for that matter) in a M/s dynamic. Is this accurate? What special circumstances or conditions might you encounter as a babygirl who wants an M/s dynamic or who finds themselves in one? and... is there such a thing as a... wait for it... MASTERDADDY???? *gasp*

Disclaimer:  All individuals should be given the freedom to define themselves however they wish. Before making assumptions about what a particular label means, please ask the person what it means to them and let them show you… and BELIEVE THEM!

Each dynamic is unique.  We should support others’ right to live out their dynamic in a way that works for THEM.  It really doesn’t matter if we understand it or not.

No one is 100% something or acts or reacts the same way 100% of the time.  We should not make assumptions about people or hold them to our own expectations of how they should behave because they choose to label themselves a certain way.  Each person is unique and complex and wonderful, and we should allow them to be themselves!

We will disagree and that is ok here.  However, we must disagree respectfully.  We can express our opinions but we are not here to argue or flame others or tell them they are wrong or that they “just aren’t getting it.”  We each can speak our truths freely and talk about what things work FOR US and what things mean TO US.

Definitions:

  • babygirl:  Someone who chooses to label themselves as such.  that is all.
  • a little: Someone who has times that they feel younger than their chronological age.
  • regression: The act of moving back in time to an age younger than your chronological age.
  • ageplay:  Acting younger than your chronological age in relation to your interactions with other people.  Ageplay can be sexual, but is just as commonly non-sexual.  Some examples of non-sexual ageplay would be coloring, playing on a playground, watching children’s shows, wearing diapers, thumb/pacifier sucking, having “stuffies,” etc.

Please understand, ageplay is a fetish.  DD/bg is a relationship dynamic.  There is a MASSIVE difference.

Misconceptions/Stereotypes:

That every babygirl/boy is or likes:
  • Bratty
  • Being Little
  • Ageplays
  • Regressing
  • Wearing Diapers
  • Coloring
  • Has “Daddy” issues
  • Is Looking for a Sugar Daddy/Momma

Some articles/blogs on the babygirl/boy experience:


Definition of M/s:  
A slave enters into service to Master/Mistress and gives consent at time of collaring, usually within the confines of what is defined in a contract, with specific rules, protocols and rituals.  Consent is given and power handed over once and completely.  A slave *always* maintains his/her rights.  S/he *always* can say “no,” but chooses obedience (unless it is a matter of self-preservation), rather than negotiating consent continually.



DD/bg dynamic definition I love:

The first thing I want to do, is dispel any notions or misconceptions about the relationship between daddy dominants and their special subs. It has nothing to do with incest, age play, or any closeted desires or fetish for, or with children. Nor is it about a father-daughter relations, in fact, there is nothing about this type of relationship that resembles anything about their father for the little-girl subs, whatsoever. In this dominant's opinion, a daddy dominant is the most tender of all dominants. He loves and adores his submissive with a true, eternal passion. A daddy dominant has his sub's best interest in mind, even when it conflicts with his own personal desires. This does not denote that he surrenders to her every demand.   There can be immense differences between the submissive's desires and her real needs. The daddy dominant has to be prepared to sacrifice for her, if needed, and yes, at times he does punish his submissive when needed, which generally hurts him just as much, if not more, than her. The daddy dominant will always do what is best for his submissive charge. The daddy dominant always helps his submissive to set and attain goals in life. He will strive diligently to help her improve herself to be the best she can be, not for himself, but for her. The daddy dominant is not only looking to make her a better submissive, but a better person overall.   He has multiple roles in her life. He is a mentor, a teacher, a protector, a guide, and most of all, a lover. The daddy dominant offers to his submissive what she needs most of all, which is unconditional love and acceptance. He must maintain consistency in his actions towards his sub, so that she always knows what to expect from him, and having the confident knowledge she can always depend upon him. The daddy dominant desires nothing more than to pull his dear submissive close and protect her from a world that is seen to be bent on cruelty, but knowing all along that he cannot.   So it is up to the daddy dominant to prepare his little sub for whatever life may throw her direction, and to always be there for her when things go wrong, knowing that she will run to him when she becomes frightened or overwhelmed by the stress of life can issue. The daddy dominant will always listen to all his submissive's fears and concerns, and will help her confront them, thus slaying her dragons, if you please.   

The daddy dominant will cuddle his special submissive and show her immense tenderness when needed. When she is unsure or uncertain of herself, he will whisper words of encouragement to her. When she feels ugly or unwanted, her daddy dominant reinforces and reassures she is beautiful. When she feels scared or nervous, he is her safety net. For the daddy dominant, his submissive is the pride, joy, and main comfort of his life. There are really no large contrasts between daddy dominants versus their regular or sadistic counterparts. The daddy dominant's sub may be the twinkle of his eye, but she is definitely all woman! And he may be a daddy, but he is still, first and foremost, a dominant!   The daddy dominant has to be able to punish and discipline his submissive when she needs it, and let his consistent actions prove that she cannot wrap her dominant around her little finger, or she will lose respect for him, thus his control over her is severely diminished or hampered. This could be pending doom for the daddy dominant/submissive relationship, or any D/s relationship. We all realize that you cannot have the love without the respect.   In that, and other ways, I may or may not have mentioned, a daddy dominant is not different from a regular or sadistic one. The only true contrast I see is how the love is given and reciprocated in this particular relationship I have discussed.

In closing this essay, I hope I have been able to bring some clarity to the misconceptions regarding daddy dominant and his dear submissive relationship, and provided some insight and knowledge on the relationship itself, as well as, some comparisons and contrasts between the regular or sadistic dominant and the daddy counterpart.

From:  http://www.collarme.com/viewjournal.asp?v=HouseofRedWolf&bhcp=1

How I define myself: Adult, non-ageplay babygirl (extended version includes “who is highly service oriented and loves structure and protocol”).  I also identify as a slave.  However, this is tied to *very* specific conditions.  When I am Daddied, it brings out my slave.  Nuturing, loving, encouraging, supporting, watching over, protecting and providing for me ignites my slavery and i act toward that Dominant/Master/Daddy as his complete and total slave.   Approach me harshly, roughly, abruptly and as a slave initially, and it repels me.  I will run away and you will get nada.

Practical example:

My Dominant wants oral sex when he gets home.

Scenario Number 1:
Dominant:  He returns home, slams the door and calls out, “slave/slut/whore/property/bitch, get over here and do your duty.  You know what I expect.  Get on your knees, girl and service me.  Give me what I want.”
princess:  Gives side eye.  O.o  Internally, I am absolutely repulsed any affection, devotion, desire, sense of submission or duty I have for this man is DEAD.  I may be fearful.  I may be cussing him out in my head.  Giving him what he wants is the LAST thing I would ever do.

Now, i know for some of you, you are shocked, appalled, calling me “no real submissive” or “topping from the bottom” in your heads…. and that’s ok.  I also understand that for many, that Dominant’s actions have you twitching with desire to please and excited for what comes next…. and that’s wonderful!

Remember what I said at the start:  we are all unique and complex and wonderful!  What works for one does not have to work for another… and guess what? - that absolutely does NOT makes us less submissive than another or more submissive than another!

Scenario Number 2:
Dominant:  He returns home, slams the door and calls out, “princess/babygirl/mine, my sweet, I/Daddy have/has been thinking about you all day and couldn’t wait to get home!  Bring your cute ass over here and give Daddy what he wants!
princess:  Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeessss… grins so widely her cheeks hurt and may:  run over and jump on him, kissing him all over his face OR call out “Daddy/Master!” and drop to her knees and crawl over to him OR rip off all of her clothes and seductively slither over to him…. then kneel at his feet, looking up at him with her body quivering with excitement, and saying “it’s my pleasure to give you anything you want my Daddy/Master”  and proceed to be putty in his hands, giving over total control.

Same goal of the Dominant, two different approaches,  two vastly different reactions.  

The interesting thing is, for me, AFTER approaching me as a babygirl and inspiring me in that style, I can enjoy the first approach as we go along.  Interesting, no?

Let’s Talk About It:
Knowing what we do at this point, how does a babygirl differ from a slave?

Differs with the individual.  Some may not be into service.  Some may like pampering.  Some may not like structure and protocol.  
Some differences I have seen (generalization - not true of all slave dynamics):
  • a slave tends to earn rights to things as they go along.  For a babygirl, this can be hurtful as s/he needs to be loved/accepted unconditionally and totally for who s/he is.  
  • Some Masters feel that it is an infringement on their control/level of control to have to approach a slave in a particular way.  They may feel that the slave needs to adjust to him/her and there is no flexibility.  Many babygirls/boys need flexibility as they need understanding, nuturing, encouragement.
  • Some Masters expect immediate obedience without question.  For many babygirls/boys, they need a high level of interaction, need to understand what’s going on, possibly why (think of an inquisitive 5 year old), and blossom with praise and encouragement.
  • Many slaves feel that hearing “good boy/girl” too often makes it less special and more routine… lessening it’s value.  Many babygirls/boys BASK in constant praise, need lots of feedback and are all atwitter at each “good girl/boy” even if it’s the 100th time they have heard it that day.



Let’s Talk About It:
Do you think a Master can meet the needs of a babygirl?  Will a babygirl satisfy a Master?

In my opinion, for babygirl/boy to have a successful M/s dynamic, TONS of very specific communication must occur up front.  There may need to be lots of talk of specific scenarios.

I also think it depends on what inspires his/her dominance and what triggers your submission.  If s/he needs to humiliate to feed his/her Dominance and you need tenderness and treasuring to meet your needs, it probably won’t work in the long term.

Let’s Talk About It:
What kind of issues might come up with a babygirl/boy in an M/s dynamic?

-Misunderstanding in the community.  Babygirls/boys as “soft” or “bdsm lite” or Masters/Mistresses with babygirls/boys as somehow less powerful, spoiling their property.
-A lot of negotiation up front about approach that motivates bg’s.  It’s tough to “make it up as you go” and make sweeping adjustments in M/s as consent/giving of control is complete.  
-Misunderstanding of what motivates you as a bg and how that feeds your Dominant’s dominance…. or not.

-Dominants trying to convince a babygirl/boy of what s/he *really* needs and not believe what s/he is saying are his/her needs.