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BDSM Basics: Daily Rules, Tasks and Assignments

I feel like daily tasks and assignments are an under-appreciated aspect of BDSM relationships. For many bottoms keeping a checklist or completing daily assignments is a great way to make sure we are staying on track and meeting our Tops’ standards, giving us a boost of confidence and allowing us to hone our submissive skills.

In order to properly execute daily tasks and assignments in a relationship you first have to trust your partner to follow the set rules and be responsible to follow through. For those in a LDR you may have to rely completely on their word of completion, but there are some ways for LDRs to complete tasks in a way that both parties are involved (we’ll go into more detail about LDR tasks in another article soon).

Be sure to go over the rules and tasks with your partner and make any changes right away so that both of you are comfortable with the amount of daily tasks and the consequences for not completing them. If you are ever uncomfortable with a punishment, be sure to bring that up during negotiations and not when you’re in the middle of the punishment. Keep in mind how often you want to test your limits and what you are physically and mentally capable of.

What is a Task?

Remember that a task or assignment should have a purpose. Yes, it might be fun for a Dominant to watch you grovel doing something you hate (like clipping their toenails), but is that task going to help you improve in a specific way? I like this list of six general purposes of a given assignments posted by|X|C|BDSM|, originally taken from a handout at Beyond Leather in Ft. Lauderdale, FL in April of 2013. Keep these in mind when creating or going over your own tasks/assignments.

  • For their Growth / Education
    • Reading List
    • Cultural Exposure, such as going to a play or museum
    • Doing something creative, like writing a story or drawing a picture
    • Taking a class or learning a new skill
  • For your pleasure / benefit (Service Assignments)
    • Chores / errands
    • Purchase a type of clothing the dominant likes
    • Embarrassing or frustrating tasks that the dominant enjoys
    • Four Types of Service Assignments
      • Service that makes you (the dominant) feel good
      • Service that makes you look good
      • Service that unburdens you
      • Service to your goals and ambitions
  • Conditioning / training
    • Practicing service tasks
    • Daily Focus (Posture, presentation, mindfulness, etc)
    • Learning and remembering preferences
  • To gain information / insight about them
    • Journaling
    • Porn / Fiction – An assignment I often give where the submissive is told to collect fictional D/s stories that arouse them and tell me what they like about each.
    • Questionnaires – such as a BDSM checklist or the Myers-Briggs assessment.
    • Essays – Such as “300 words on what the word ‘slave’ means to you”
  • Keep them busy / maintain dynamic and structure
    • Chores / errands
    • Scavenger Hunt
  • Personal Care
    • Exercise
    • Diet
    • Grooming
    • Breaks / Vacation

Give Me an Example

So what are some good examples of daily tasks? Well, a few great ones are listed above such as journaling, practicing posture or positions, sticking to a diet, exercising or purchasing a piece of clothing your Top has requested. Here are some more ideas:

  • Daily Check-Ins (Specific Times by text, email, phone, etc)
  • Maintaining respect when addressing the Top.
  • Wearing a collar at specific times or 24/7
  • Completing a submissive/slave workbook/worksheets or written assignments.
  • Asking for preference regarding clothing or wearing what the Top chooses for the bottom. (wear only heels, go commando for two hours during the day, specific lingerie, etc)
  • Meditation or Yoga
  • Self-care (time for you, counseling, trip to the spa, out with friends, etc)
  • Specific Bedtime and/or Wake Up Time (Must in bed by midnight and awake no later than 7 am)
  • Researching a specific BDSM aspect or activity
    • completing an assignment on research (journal x number of pages, practice, oral report, etc)
  • Reading X amount of pages in a book
  • Financial Responsibility
    • Given an allowance
    • In charge of budget
    • Pay bills
  • Permission to orgasm/masturbate/initiate play or follow specific instructions when doing so.
  • Chores
    • Laundry
    • Lawn Care
    • Daily Cleaning
    • House Repair
  • Service Tasks
    • Preparing a Meal
    • Specific serving instructions (kneeling, in the nude, as human furniture, etc)
    • Preparing daily drinks (i.e.; coffee/tea in the AM, alcoholic beverage in the PM)
    • Taking care of children
    • Organizing important dates and functions (meetings, doctor’s appointments, birthdays, etc)

For a great example of specific and well-written rules, check out ServingMaster‘s list.

Master's Creed by ASIBDSM

Keeping in Check

Most people aren’t around each other 24/7, so how does a Top know for sure that their bottom is completing their assignments or tasks? For most tasks the answer is obvious, you’ll be able to visually check if a chore is done or they wore the correct outfit. For other tasks, such as meditation, keeping a budget, research or even just maintaining a positive attitude can be harder to keep track of. Here are a few ways to do this:

  • Reading or discussing a journal entry
  • Video of meditation/yoga
  • Keeping a blog for research
  • Creating a “Positivity Jar” (write down a positive thing about yourself and place it in a jar so you, or your Top, can read it later!)
  • Shared Documents (through Google or Cloud, this is great for a checklist of tasks you both can update, budgets, calendars, etc)
  • Phone calls or Skype (this is great for masturbation or other sexy tasks!)

Not Enough Time in the Day

Every Top will have to remember that their bottom is only human, some days they may not be able to complete all of their tasks (or specific ones) because of mental or physical illness, emergencies or just lack of time. But there will be other times when the bottom might try to test their Top’s limits or they just forgot and punishments will have to be given. Punishments must be previously agreed upon and should be related to the severity of the infraction (a punishment for not doing the dishes wouldn’t be the same as it would be for an act of disrespect). Remember to never implement a physical punishment while angry! Send the bottom to another room to wait or put them in “time-out” instead!

  • Physical Punishments
    • Standing/kneeling in corner
    • No touching (not touching them or allowing them to touch for a specific set-time)
    • Set number of impacts (spankings, flogging, caning, etc)
  • Unpleasant chore (detail cleaning the bathroom/kitchen, washing the car, etc)
  • Sleeping on the floor or in a kennel
  • Writing Assignment (writing “I will never ______…” 50 times or additional workbook pages, etc)
  • Restricting Diet (no soda or other favorite snack for a specific time)
  • Public Apology (this can be done on social media or at a fetish event/munch)

If you’re not super creative, check out the BDSM Punishment Generator for some ideas.

A Better Person

At the end of the day, tasks and assignments are put in place to help you become a better version of yourself, so you can be a better bottom. If a task is mentally or physically overwhelming it might be time to reevaluate your assignments! Remember, it is perfectly ok to go back and redo them if you find something doesn’t work your dynamic or you just can’t fit in scrubbing the toilet every single day but keep in mind these aren’t necessarily supposed to be easy either.

Always maintain respect for your partner when instructing a task or implementing a punishment (unless, of course, that’s not your thing)!

Have other tasks, assignments or punishment ideas? Let us know in the comments!