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Internal Monitoring of Disciplines

The peace of thoughtful obedience.

The intention of the Internal Disciplines Circle (i/d) is to offer a supportive environment for community members who wish to experiment with the principles of obedience, accountability, and transparency while they work toward their self-selected disciplines and goals. The Internal Disciplines Circle is a private sub-community of Watchfulness and accessible only to the members who have asked for and have been granted admittance, along with area moderators and other experienced members of the Community – our obedient “watchful sisters” who are themselves always closely monitored. We find the limited accessibility helps foster a deeper sense of trust and intimacy among the circle.

What is expected of a circle participant?

Each member of i/d is assigned to a small “circle” consisting of six to eight members monitored by two moderators. New members are welcomed into the circle and provided with a personal “album” to declare and track their self-selected goals. A member may update as often as she wishes, but weekly updates are required. Circle members share their challenges and successes, other reflections, or even photos as they progress with their goals. Moderators spend time familiarizing themselves with each member’s disciplines, reading their weekly updates, offering encouragement, as well as gentle reminders to be obedient, and answering questions.

In return, i/d circle members encourage their sisters as they work toward their goals too. To be useful, comments should be frank and honest, positive when warranted, cautionary when necessary. The subject should always be the way in which a discipline is (or is not) honored and should not speak to the character of any individual woman. Part of the success within i/d is the loving dedication of the moderators and participants to accept each woman and support her along her path.

This may be difficult for some to visualize. Some excerpts showing self-selected disciplines from one sister’s album are shared below:

1. daily meditation (5-10 minutes)

2. going to the gym four times a week

3. maintaining dignity and a pleasing demeanor at all times

4. observing arousal disciplines and the watchful sustenance discipline

Yesterday i went to the gym, only because i had listed it as one of my disciplines. i worked out very hard. This morning i am actually out of bed and off to gym. i am amazed! Again, only due to having said i would do this as part of my declared disciplines.

i meditated and i was obedient to my demeanor discipline, but i struggled to remain patience and not raise my voice when the children became demanding near the dinner hour. While i served dinner, i remembered not to take seconds and passed on the bread. But, i felt the boundaries of my discipline when it was time for dessert…i really wanted to eat the brownies i made for my family. i found myself justifying a small brownie, and i came just short of popping a piece into my mouth. It was the thought of having to confess here that prevented me from eating it. Instead, i took a deep breath and focused on serving my family. i served strawberries to accompany the dessert. This gave me a way to partake in dessert with my family while also observing my watchful sustenance discipline. i ate four strawberries and felt such a deep sense of peace that i ‘did it’. my husband commented that i seemed to be carrying myself differently…happier…and i am!

Reply from a moderator:

Well done, marie! i have found certain times of day to be a real challenge for maintaining my composure and demeanor. The demands of motherhood can be so draining and distracting. Over time, i have found it is easier to be mindful of my patience dwindling and find ways to stop and calm the children, also my own nerves! Being obedient to disciplines makes us resourceful…but also less likely to indulge in tantrums or use food for comfort. Excellent idea using the strawberries to fulfill your need for a sweet…fruit has become my go-to ‘dessert’ too! What kind of workout are you using at the gym?

Thank you for your thoughtful update, marie. i look forward to hearing more. 

How to join:

The circle of i/d is recommended for sisters who have been active members of the community, and are ready to commit to a set of self-selected disciplines, offer weekly updates and support the other women in their small circle. If this level of participation appeals to you, please spend some time reflecting on disciplines or goals you would like to explore. For suggestions on disciplines, members may review our resource page on suggested disciplines. If you are still uncertain about disciplines, we welcome you to seek guidance from your mentor, a moderator of the i/d circle, or any “watchful sister.” These monitored women can offer their experienced advice on how to get started and answer questions about the i/d circle.

If you choose to seek admittance, please send a private message to one of i/d moderators, explain your reason for wanting to join and share your self-selected disciplines. It will be the moderator’s pleasure to help you through the admittance process, set up your album, and welcome you to the i/d circle.