Yesterday in my DBT group we learned about PLEASE Master as part of the emotion regulation section. As soon as my doctor passed out the worksheet, I was distracted. I mean, come on! “Please Master”? When I heard those two words, I saw it in my head this way: “Please, Master?”, like you’re begging your Dominant Master to allow you to use the bathroom. Does anyone else see the sexual connections here? Why would a skill to help a Borderline start by begging? As if we don’t feel bad enough. Not to mention, the person who is being begged is the Master! I really do not feel like the title of this skill does it justice.
The thought behind it is that there are several things you can control to help aid in regulating your emotions. Taking care of your physical health, like going to the doctor or dentist when necessary and getting proper medical care. Eating balanced meals set in a schedule. Avoiding mood altering drugs and alcohol. Getting the proper amount of sleep. Exercising a healthy amount each day. The final part is to build mastery. You are supposed to try to do something every day that makes you feel competent and in control.
Now, I’m not just going to complain about having to think/say “Please, Master?” without offering some kind of replacement. Here is the new name of the skill that I am going to start using. REACH Empowerment. Doesn’t that sound so much better? I can say, “Reach empowerment!” all day long and feel better. I don’t think my mood would be much lifted if I went throughout the day saying, “Please, Master?”. I can imagine that my mood would become considerably worse. Here is what the letters in REACH Empowerment stand for:
R – receive proper medical treatment
E – eat properly balanced meals
A – avoid mood-altering drugs and alcohol
C – catch the right amount of zzz’s
H – healthily exercise daily
Empowerment – try to do one thing each day to make yourself feel competent and in control.
See? It MEANS the same thing as the original, but it is easier for me, and quite possibly a lot of other people, to say throughout the day. And let me just ask here: How can you feel competent and in control when you are begging your Master? No, thank you. I would rather reach empowerment.