Gold Star Doms with Master James

Master James has a great deal of experience as a Dom and today he’s going to lay down some true facts (based on that experience) about the qualities of the best Dominants. Pay attention, Mr Domly Doms.

The original post is here.

Ten Traits of Gold Star Dominants


This article contains unabashed, hetero-normative, binary language. I do not apologise for this, as it is written from my own perspective and drawn from my own lived experiences. However I do not intend to offend, upset, or marginalise dynamics with alternate compositions. So take the good, throw out the bad, and ignore the rest.


First I must start with my disclaimer, that the vast majority of the following has been learned by sifting through the smoking ashes of my failures, rather than being gleaned from my shining successes.

Next I must also point out that this is not a basic ‘how to for beginners’, nor is it a guide to ascertain whether you are dominant or not. This article is to provide those already on their journey as Dominants, a few areas to think about as they seek to hone themselves into even better versions of themselves.

So along my own journey, I have started to notice some differences between the really great Doms out there, and the rather shit ones. So without further ado, I give you my completely unofficial list of ten traits of Gold Star Dominants

1: An analytical view of human nature
This is one of the first trends I noticed as a young Dom, that all the great Doms and Masters had in common. They all had a deep fascination with how humans operate. They all sought to understand what makes us tick. And in doing so, they were far better equipped to deal with the complexities of D/s and were far less likely to be caught out or surprised by the behaviour of their sub in response to any given situation. Likewise they were infinity better postured to deal with it appropriately and constructively.

I swear that the best Masters I’ve met, seem to know more about human nature than world leading psychologists.

2: A desire to be the best
Excellence in anything is unlikely to magically happen. It’s something that needs to be strived for. It’s a long term goal that requires the daily renewal of vigour and drive. But no matter what it is that the gold star Dom puts his mind to, he never wants to settle for mediocrity.

So rather than sitting around wondering why that other Dom is so awesome at everything. Just accept the truth that he set high standards for himself, and refused to stop until he achieved them.

3: A desire to learn from the best
To be the best, you need to learn from the best.

This is a hard thing for many Doms to accept. They tend to think that they can do it all on their own and still come in first place. But they will never achieve the level of proficiency and quality of those who put ego aside and be humble enough to seek training from those who can provide it.

Because behind every Olympic gold medalist, is a world class coach, a team of world class trainers, and the mentorship of champions from proceeding generations… Behind every great man, is a great mentor.

4: Sees things through
The gold star Dom knows that shit takes time. That the road to personal excellence is long, arduous, and fraught with potholes.

If he starts learning rope, he doesn’t do three lessons, and assume he’s got this shit. He sticks it out until the day his teacher looks him in the eyes and tells him there is no more to teach.

If he commits to something, he sees it through till the end, regardless of how tiring it might be, or how long it might take. This makes him credible, it makes him believable, it makes him trustworthy. Because everyone knows; if he says he will do something, then he will. His word is his bond.

5: Owns their mistakes
As I said above; “The road to excellence is fraught with potholes”. This means that for someone to attain excellence, they are going to fuck up a lot on the way to figuring out what works best. The greatest chefs in the world have burned more meals than you or I have ever cooked in our lifetimes. Mistakes are inevitable. How you handle them is what separates the men from the boys.

When things go wrong, the shitty Dom is focused denying it, so it doesn’t shatter his fragile ego. Or he is focused on coving it up, so it doesn’t affect his precious reputation. The gold star Dom on the other hand, does the opposite. His main focus is on the welfare of those who have been hurt. He want to take responsibility for his own actions. And this starts with owning it.

6: Learns from their mistakes
The next thing the gold star Dom wants to do in the aftermath of shit going wrong. Once he has seen to the care of those who have been hurt, and made amends where possible. Is to ensure it never happens again.

This starts with owning it, taking responsibility for it. And continues to seeking counselling from others, and self reflection to figure out what went wrong and how. Then he introduces new personal protocols to avoid reoccurrence.

And just like that, the gold star Dom, has continued to hone himself into an even better, safer, more trustworthy Dom.

7: Slow to judge
Refer to point 1: A gold star Dom understands human nature. Therefore he understand that everyone is flawed. We all lie, cheat, act selfish at times, and do things that hurt others. He doesn’t want to judge others too harshly, because he also knows it could be him someday.

8: Quick to forgive
A man who is slow to forgive is a man who has unrealistic expectations of others, lofty opinions of himself, and holds onto petty shit to lord over people with like a total bitch. None of which bodes well for a successful D/s relationship, whether it’s 24/7 or play.

The gold star Doms of the world are allowed to feel hurt, betrayed, or angry. But once that passes, they are quick to forgive. They know everyone fucks up, and they are far more interested in contributing constructively to fixing the problem, than they are in dragging it out to elevate themselves by pushing others down.

9: Doesn’t discard people.
A gold star Dom doesn’t have a high burn rate. He doesn’t give out Velcro collars. He doesn’t list people on his profile one week then throw them out when the next new shiny comes along. His relationships aren’t revolving doors.

He builds meaningful connections, and commits to those who mean a lot to him. This doesn’t mean that casual play is bad. But he certainly never promises more than he intends to deliver.

When he does begin something, he sees it through and doesn’t spend his time looking for reasons to give up on someone. He is far more interested in looking for ways to make things work, than he is in looking for reasons why it’s easier to throw in the towel.

10: Strives to maintain humility
The dominant who seeks to be the best he can be in everything he puts his mind to, and who has the character to see things through, will often find himself in a position of superior skill and experience to his peers. When this happens, the gold star Dom commits to maintaining the humility that helped get him there in the first place.

And humility it’s isn’t a lack of self awareness. There are athletes who are clearly the best at what they do in the world…, and they know it. But they conduct themselves with a sense of dignity and grace that comes from humility.

Then there are those athletes who a total douchbags…. Don’t be the douchbag. Be the guy who gets there, covered in the scars that humbly remind him of what it took to get there.

Bonus tip for subs:
Never trust a knight in shining armour. He’s a man who has never had his metal tested.…
– Master_James_

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