I wasn't sure what to call this post. It's really just my thoughts on punishment. I know a lot of subs out there say that just knowing that they have disappointed their dom is punishment enough and that's the truth. As subs (men and women), we tend to be harder on ourselves than anything handed down by our Doms.
I think the bigger question is do we need to be?
Punishment is sometimes just needed, not because the Dom is so pissed off that his rules are ignored but for us. Sometimes we (by we I mean subs/slaves whatever term) just get stuck in a mental way and continue beating up ourselves over a transgression they feel wasn't such a big deal. So yes in reality we are far harder on ourselves than we need to be. Some would ague that's punishment enough but I think sometimes a few swats on the rear, or whatever reminds me all that now the punishment is over. It takes the pressure off me, I've been corrected, and while I don't want it to happen again, I can move on from it.
I have seen in my own relationship with Omega, the times that he did blow off something I did and saw me feeling miserable about it. He let it go, thinking in that logical way of his I was punishing myself enough. The problem for us and for me was that while I was self-punishing, I was also not focused on him. I was focused on me and whatever I did wrong. This actually led to more acting out (in a subconscious way), which continued the cycle until I had done something so bad, I required a heavy punishment from O. When he punished me, mentally at least for me, it wasn't about the last thing I'd done, but maybe the 20 before that also.
Kinda like when Paul Newman won the Oscar for The Color of Money. I don't think it was about really that role but honestly all the roles he had NEVER won for.
After talking to O about it, and working hard in my private blog to get my feelings across it suddenly started making sense to him. I needed correction or punishment for the little things I was doing wrong, not just for the big things. And ya a look of strong disapproval can do wonders to improve my attitude, but it doesn't compare when he sleeps on his side of the bed alone and in the morning pulls me close to him. Just like being told to be still. That's punishment too. Or when he orders something for me in a restaurant that I wouldn't enjoy as much as something else and he knows it. I know it. It's firm, and final. There are no lingering thoughts from me.
And then I can move forward, beyond whatever it was I did wrong. I can turn the focus away from me. It's interesting that when he started doing these little corrections, my over-all balance improved, as did my attitude. I broke fewer rules and was able to refocus my energy more on him, which is of course where it should be.