Category Archives: Lifestyle

Articles related to living a better life.

20Oct/12

RESPECT ~Let me Tell You What it Means To Me

Respect:
to have an attitude of esteem towards; show or have respect for to respect one’s Master
to pay proper attention to; not violate to respect the submissive’s boundaries
to show consideration for; treat courteously or kindly

As a newbie entering into the BDSM lifestyle you hear a lot about ‘consent’ and ‘intent’ and how to play safely. What we don’t seem to hear enough about is respect. Respect is one of the key values that keeps what we do as kinksters from being abusive. Without respect, there is no honor and no trust. Without respect intent becomes another pavestone in hell, and consent is meaningless.

First and foremost, you need to respect yourself. This means knowing who you are even if all you know is that you are evolving and learning. It is living true to your values even if at times it is uncomfortable to do so. It means you behave in such a way that you can get up with yourself in the morning and go to bed with yourself at night knowing you made the best choices you could. It means keeping your side of the side-walk clean.

Our communities are filled with rugged individualists who by the very acts we indulge in defy living by society’s rules. The only way we can manage to play nicely together is if there is respect for others; for each other’s kink, relationships and limits. I don’t have to enjoy your style of kink to respect you or respect your right to practice your kink as you see fit. I don’t even have to like you personally to be civil to you or to exercise good manners when interacting with you.

A few months back Gamer and I attended a play party. When we first entered the room one of the women immediately shouted out to the entire room: “Oh goodie the English guy is here! Talk to me while I masturbate!” This was so completely disrespectful that I was stunned into silence. I will agree that the Governor has a beautiful voice and his soft British accent is a joy to hear. However, how disrespectful to him to reduce him to an object! How utterly disrespectful to his companions! I completely lost respect for this woman as she had completely ignored basic courtesy to my Dom and to me.

Respect in our community is paramount and it must be mutual. If you aren’t going to respect me, then it makes it impossible for me to respect you. If there isn’t respect, there cannot be trust and without trust there cannot be a healthy relationship. Thus, if I cannot respect you I will NOT associate with you. It is that simple.
So much that plagues our community as a whole could be avoided if the concepts of respect were pounded into us with as much enthusiasm as the concept of consent. Having respect for and within our community can be defined as behaving with civility. In the well known article, ‘Civility and Incivility in the Scene’ by Chris M and Lady Medora is a wonderful quote:

“One of the most grave and inexplicable problems facing our community in general is the continued presence of downright rudeness. It takes many forms: gossip, arrogance, slander, ingratitude, interpersonal cruelty , rumor-mongering, the propensity to snub, shun or belittle, a refined Sensitivity to slight paired with strident disregard for how ones actions And words effect others. It is astonishing, and terribly sad, how poorly we get along from the viewpoint of interpersonal relationships. Why a community like ours, whose members strive for a mature outlook on power, consent and tolerance, should feud with such violence and monotonous regularity is a true mystery.”

The authors conclude that the way to fix much of what plagues our community can be resolved with greater civility i.e., respect. It really all boils down to what you learned in kindergarten. PLAY NICE! It shouldn’t be that hard.

 

 

10Oct/12

How To Stop Gossip

People love to gossip. It is simply a fact of living amongst our fellow humans. We all like to be in “the know” and gossip in our society is actually a multi-billion dollar industry.  Gossip and hearsay destroy trust. In an alternative lifestyle community where trust  and power exchange is the cornerstone of what we do, gossip can do more damage than a 13th century plague.

So, what can we do to stop gossip? Here are few suggestions.

 

  • Set the example and keep negative off-hand remarks to yourself. It doesn’t matter if you don’t name specific names, if there is enough information for people to jump to conclusions they will.
  • Keep your side of the sidewalk clean, and don’t share anything unless it involves you directly.  Even then exercise caution. Not all venting grounds are secure locations! It can take one rant to an untrustworthy person to destroy friendships.
  • Demonstrate you are worthy of trust and keep confidences and confidential information to yourself.
  • “If you propose to speak, always ask yourself, is it true, is it necessary, is it kind.” ~Buddha
  • Switch subjects when people start to gossip.  This not only stops the gossip machine in its tracks, but also keeps you from soaking up a lot of negativity you really don’t need.
  • When someone begins talking about somebody else in a negative way, offer to contact that person, together with the gossiper and see if you can facilitate a reconciliation. Nine times out of ten, the folks gossiping will be terrified of the idea. You see, people who talk about others depend upon a certain level of anonymity.  They like having things kept secret and in the dark. They will vehemently deny that they were ever the source of the rumor and innuendo even when confronted directly. When you offer to include them or use them as a source, they will quickly stop. Do it enough times and they will get the hint and not gossip with you or about you again!
  • Confront gossipers when necessary. If you believe people have been spreading rumors, it may be worth talking to them directly.  Being confronted will make them more aware that you are likely to investigate comments made about you and your intolerance for such behavior. Though true gossip mongers are likely to deny any wrongdoing,  it can provide an opportunity to open communication and mend fences in those cases of poor judgement or misunderstandings.
  • Counteract negative comments with positive ones.  Those who love gossip usually depend upon a constant flow of bad or embarrassing information. For some reason the gossip mongers don’t get as excited when they hear good news.
  • See the good in other people instead of focusing on the negative. When we choose to focus on the positive, then we are less likely to complain about the negative.
  • As much fun as it may appear to be connected  to the 411 gossip line, remember that as soon as you walk away from the gossip session, the gossips will be talking about you. Remember what goes around eventually comes around, so choosing not to indulge or hang with those who gossip is in your best interest.


Remember that spreading rumors and gossip speaks more about you and your character than those you choose to gossip about.  The best way to stop gossip is to simply don’t.

 

10Oct/12

The $30 Make-Up Challenge

By Jeweled Princess

 

I was challenged to complete a entire make-up look for $30.  This look would include: eye shadow, shadow primer, mascara, face primer, bronzer, face powder and blush.   I decided to go to my favorite place to buy cosmetics, Ulta. As I walked into Ulta, I thought to myself “pfft! I got this challenge in the proverbial make-up bag!”  However, my self-confidence diminished when I began pricing everything.  I wandered around the store for a good 30 minutes trying to find the best prices for the best products.

I had a couple of coupons that I had clipped from the Sunday paper but even before taxes my total was $67.44.  What a super fail!  It made me realize what a challenge it is to get a quality make-up look and still stay on budget.  Next time, I am going to re-do this challenge at Rite-Aide.

 

Wish me luck!