This is a full body of work I’m doing – but I wanted to write this here – predominantly because Judgement is such a huge issue. And mostly because most of us just throw our hands in the air and say “Well everyone Judges!!” even though we know inside we shouldn’t, it feels like something we’re helpless to fix.
It feels like something that makes you or me a bad person.
Which is how most things on judging handle it. In judging your judgement.
Seems a bit circular don’t you think?
I’m not here to judge your judging. I’m here to offer an alternative. One that I hope will aid in the building and sustaining of your dynamic.
Practicing judgement can be one of the most dangerous and deadly actions we can do to relationships.
When we judge ourselves- we cease to accept ourselves. Acceptance is more important to mental and emotional health than self esteem. Acceptance is the most precious gift you can give to your precious self. And yet so often we judge our most authentic expressions of self. The facets of ourselves that do not go along with the status quo. Those parts that are the minority and therefore more marginalized. Those parts that make us profoundly unique – we judge. .
When we judge our Masters we cease to accept Them. We deny them Autonomy and Agency. We become condescending and paternalistic, or judge and jury usually without many facts. We consider ourselves wise, cautious, or “taking a stand” as we judge those who we have entrusted with Authority and Power over us.
Here’s the thing. We don’t HAVE to judge. Not ourselves. Not our Masters.
But first a story. A few months back Master and I were hosting an event for a group of people in a subculture that we are not a part of. We had put in place a “do not” that from our perspective made good sense and from the perspective of this group – would limit their expression and adversely impact their fun. One of the leaders contacted me and said “Instead of a no – perhaps you can ask how this can happen” – This made me stop and think. I had made a judgement, based upon my information and instead of staying curious, asking more questions, and understanding there may be more to this than I realized – I said no.
I ASSUMED instead of asking.
How does this apply to Power Exchange dynamics?
When we stop asking questions – we start killing our dynamic.
When Judging increases – Love decreases.
Even if your Power exchange dynamic does not include being “in love” – the love that is needful for the dynamic to exist and fulfill – love of the dynamic, love of your identity in it etc; whatever type of love is there- it decreases under the judgement.
Many of us wonder what to do in place of judging – after all you’re not an automaton and you experience things. If you’re not going to judge what can you do?
Not judging do not mean NOT SEEING.
We have other options and specifically as a slave interacting with her Master – these other options become extremely important.
- Observe – An observation is a statement of fact, of what is so. An observation uses neutral language to avoid the pejorative, and to refrain giving it any meaning. It says nothing about whether you and/or your action are effective or ineffective; good or bad; right or wrong.
- Assess – An assessment goes further. It does assess whether your action is effective, or ineffective, in reaching the desired goal. Yet an assessment also refrains from moral judgement. It also avoids good or bad, right and wrong.
- Judge – A judgment goes on to add meaning; good or bad, right or wrong. Yet different things have different meanings for different people.
As you can see above- we have two other options – two important options that actually build the dynamic instead of tearing it down. You can observe and you can assess. Both of these put you and your Owner on the same team, whereas judgement places your Owner UNDER your judgement and places you OVER Him/Her as the morality,good,bad police.
This change done repeatedly eventually erodes at the Power Exchange Dynamic.
How do we get out of Judgement? Curiosity and Appreciation.
Curiosity says I’m interested in you. It provides space around the issue – this interjection of space allows for more than simple right and wrong. It allows for the dynamic expression of who the Master is. Curiosity is the door to Acceptance.
Appreciation- Appreciation is about expressing Value to your Owner for who He/She is and what He/She does. This keeps your from going too far on the Judgement train where you end up making value judgements to the negative. It very difficult to Judge and appreciate – although you can observe and assess and still appreciate.
There is a lot to this and this is by no means exhaustive. It’s a just snippet from something I’m working on.