How to have a "Happy" Birth

OH SNAP!!! Do you feel stressed? Overwhelmed with the remaining items on the “to-do” list? When is the last time you did something for yourself?? Life throws us curve balls, always at the worst times. The constant juggle, chaos and tension run high with family drama, work demands, relationship woes. To boot we have depressing news headlines and fear, shame, guilt, and the wide range of human emotions. To boot your hormones are all over the place when your pregnant. 

As an expectant mom, you already know that stress and anxiety are not good for you or that little baby growing inside of you. And you might worry how all that stress is impacting that little one. Then of course comes fear, shame, guilt, and judgement sneaking up on you. The hormones, the unknown, the fluctuations of energy and balance that can come and go with your body’s changes. 

 

What if….

 

What if just a tad of curiosity and opening yourself up to a few simple tips could QUICKLY help balance your emotions and lessen stress?

 

What if…

 

What if you took control to set the stage for a happier, easier (or “natural”, if that is what you desire) childbirth experience?

 

Possible, absolutely! There are proven ways to increase happiness and change a stress reaction into a more positive experience. I’ve found, in my experience as a childbirth educator, hypnotist, and a mom, that there are 5 easy to access areas that YOU CAN FOCUS to create more happiness, confidence, and calm right now! 

These tools you can bring right into the birth room and create a safer, more controlled, happy welcome for your precious child. 

5 things that you can do today to create more calm around pregnancy and childbirth: creating positive expectations, bonding with your unborn baby & your partner now, gaining a deeper understanding of your role (besides simply eating well), choosing your team based upon your desires and gaining insight into the big event to come, and lastly, start where you are. I cover all of this here in my mini-course on “Five Secrets to a Happy Birth,” access is free and includes 4 downloads including e-books. 

Maybe you have a steep background in labor and delivery? Like me, I had been placing epidurals for moms for more than 10 years before I got pregnant but I still discovered more, much more. 

Or maybe you have experienced a LESS than ideal birth previously? 

Or perhaps you are just scared to death….(hint: don’t let someone else’s story become yours). 

Ok, so we all have different experiences and yet, let’s celebrate being a woman and create the most wonderful birth experience for ourselves, our partners, our babies. After all, there are many events we plan for in live, dream about for years, create and research. No need to overwhelm yourself. Honor your time and connect with those ready and willing to help you. 

 

Here goes, ... my #1 tip is:

 

Create and Build Positive Expectation About Birth

The day to day can somehow feel overwhelming… scheduling appointments, balancing work/school and personal obligations, and then trying to be “healthy!” After all you have wanted this for a while or maybe just wrapping your head fully around the idea that conception has occurred. Take a moment, just one moment to notice a nice inhale and then longer exhale. Drop your thoughts inward…maybe you will require a couple more breathes to feel a moment of relaxation take hold. Once you feel the body let go just a bit… really understand, be curious, what it is that would nourish you right now? How are you really doing…emotionally, mentally?

That’s great. I hope you did take that moment. If not, feel like you can pause a do this quickly, it won’t take long. You need it, we all need it as women. A moment to reclaim what is feeling “true” for us. Our hustle and bustle, all the noise in our world, all the commitments we take on can leave us with little time to really feel ourselves. 

So, let’s talk about childbirth. What are some ways to create a space for nature to assist YOU in birthing this baby easily? Now, I hesitate to use the word natural childbirth, because natural can mean varied approaches or birth locations. And truthfully, that is not what I am interested in. But what about happy? Perhaps we can all agree what it would feel like to have a happy birth. Maybe if you struggle with thinking birth can be a happy time, you can imagine what would make your childbirth experience miserable, can’t you?

So let’s go into our mind, a powerful place. Start to visualize…

Imagine birthing your baby, in a manner where you feel nothing but calm and overwhelmingly safe and supported. You can birth your baby gently and calmly in a setting that you chose... a hospital, a birth center, or at home.

During the birth you are surrounded by your partner and they become a protector, guide, and role model for this little one. They are supporting and advocating for you.

You chose to birth in a calm, serene, natural manner and even experience deep relaxation and you bring your baby into the world, into your welcoming arms.

Your body and baby are performing the most beautiful birth ballet, with grace and elegance.

It can be very freeing to continue to visit, elaborate, and daydream about this image you have of a beautiful birth unfolding for you. This is called visualization and is a key component to awakening your subconscious. 

You might already be familiar with the power of affirmations; but let’s review...affirmations are short, positive statements that you can read, repeat to yourself, or listen to from recordings. With affirmations, you can reprogram your subconscious mind. Some people call affirmations mantras. Same thing. 

An example of an affirmation is "I am calm and relaxed." A key point is, it doesn't matter what your current state actually is, you can still achieve this state by repeating and believing the affirmation. Your subconscious mind will pick up on the statement and bring forth the new feelings. Thoughts (I am calm)  become feeling (I feel relaxed), feelings become emotions (I am happy). 

For childbirth preparation, you can use personalized affirmations, to easily create new powerful feelings for the happy, easy, confident birth you wish to have. If you’re not feeling so confident in creating your own affirmation just yet use colorful pictures and borrow mantras from birth professionals and other moms. Click here for immediate access to the “Five Secrets to a Happy Birth” where you can download a complimentary e-book. 

#2 Bond with Your Partner and Your Baby

There is a huge field of pre- and peri-natal psychology that has found interaction between parents has an effect on emotions, personality, language development in the womb and impacts fetal brain and neurological development. 

No need to fear, step 1 above really helps you to start to control this environment because although you can’t control what happens around you all the time, you can control how you respond to it. Take a breath and just recognizing YOU is a great start, then use those easy self-hypnosis techniques of visualization and affirmations to create the proper thoughts inside yourself. 

The next step is bonding with your partner and baby. It is true in childbirth preparation, as it is in life; don’t depend on finding the time, you need to MAKE the time. What does it look like to connect with your partner and really focus on expectations, fears, and hopes? Finding the time for both of you to deeply relax, to practice or rehearse options for support, and discover what the three of you will need as you go within to experience a happy, calm, and confident birth. 

Hypnobirthing®  Education creates the right space for couple to come together and learn alongside a certified educator. The five-week class highlights all aspects of the physical, emotional, and spiritual underpinnings of childbirth plus arms them with more tools to aid in positive thinking, relaxation, visualization, breathing, and physical preparations for the happy, easy birth. For information on the next class offering check out {website}

#3 Understanding Your Role in Healthy Pregnancy

Healthy pregnancy goes beyond what we eat and drink while pregnant, not to say this is not important because it absolutely is. Often times, in the US, the birth provider will review these nutrition highlights with mom, early in pregnancy. Moms also google for information or read articles or blogs about healthy habits in pregnancy. 

The other key aspects that expectant moms should learn more about when considering how to prepare their body for birth include:

  • Positions and body mechanics mom can utilize to help get baby in that optimal ready-for-birth position
  • Toning the pregnant body including inner thigh, leg muscles, hip stretches, and pelvic floor exercises
  • Perineal massage to help mom relax this area in particular in preparation for birth
  • Breathing to reduce stress, anxiety, and tension as well as breathing that can aid in comforting contraction discomfort and even birthing baby
  • And self-hypnosis

 

Although all the areas for healthy pregnancy listed above is taught in a full 5-week Hypnobirthing® education course, it would be of benefit to highlight the hypnosis part of this particular educational model. Hypnosis is really what sets this course apart from other courses. It can really help both mom and partner create useful techniques for the “big birthing day” as well as helpful tools for any current or future life event. 

A good definition for hypnosis was found here authored by a physician who publishes routinely, in medical journals including American Journal of Medicine (JAMA).   

“Hypnosis is a form of highly focused attention, like getting so caught up in a good movie that you enter the imagined world—you become part of the story instead of part of the audience,” explains David Spiegel, M.D., a professor of psychiatry and medical director of the Center for Integrative Medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine in California. “In this state, you can learn to control your physical reaction to stressors, allowing you to approach even difficult problems with less discomfort.” Hmm, this sounds like it could (and quite frankly does) lend itself to childbirth. 

The misinformed images of hypnosis, where you essentially zonk out and become a blank canvas for the hypnotist to do with you as they will (walk funny, talk funny, reveal deep, dark family secrets), is, in fact, the opposite of what the practice of hypnosis is about. Hypnosis is visualization, relaxation, breathing, and allowing the mind to approach stress (or labor) in a happier, calmer, easier way. 

Hypnosis improves procedural pain and emotional distress and can reduce medication consumption up to 40%—in short, if hypnosis were a drug, it would be standard of care. So why not use hypnosis alone or alongside your IV medications or epidural?

Learn an easy to incorporate breathing technique. Easy to access along with other e-books and tools right here. 

#4 Know What to Expect During Labor and Chose Your Team

You become the hiring manager for your birth team, it is another role you get to play as you step into parenthood. I get it, in the US healthcare industry, insurance can dictate a lot of the options. You may be thinking I don’t have much or a say in the type of provider or delivery I will have. However, all soon-to-be parents should assume the role of the “Hiring Manager” and once hired there will be times when you will asked to make decisions and you will want to feel comfortable making informed decisions. 

Like any manager, you first need to know what you want from an employee. Education and knowledge about what to expect so that you can be informed, ask the right questions, and know exactly when you need to step up and use your B.R.A.I.N.S. when making decisions for your body and baby. 

How using your B.R.A.I.N.S. helps decision making during labor. This easy acronym can help you make informed medical decisions regarding labor and delivering your baby. Think about this acronym in terms of these particular circumstances.  B- what are the benefits? R- What are the risks? A- What are the alternatives? I- What do your instincts tell you? N- What if we were to do NOTHING? S- Please allow us to have some SPACE to decide. 

#5 Start NOW, whenever you are. 

Childbirth should not be feared. Fear can actually rob you from the enjoyment of your special day. Everyone, it seems, has a story to birth share and most are not positive, and these stories surround us from the second we announce we are expecting or as soon as that belly starts to give away our secret. There is the story your neighbor shared about her labor induction that led to cesarean section or the most recent Facebook post where someone shared about her horrible birth of 70 hours! Many moms to be are also very fearful of the PAIN they know they will have in labor. My experience placing hundreds, if not thousands of epidurals for mom in labor, has demonstrated that this is a very real fear. There is an article that can be very helpful in describing labor pain and you can access it immediately through here

Understandably what we need most is support and knowledge so that we can, just like other big events in our lives, go in with a general knowledge of what to expect and a general idea of we can manage, and even enjoy, the event. To conquer the fear, get curious! Curious about your amazing body, the powerful uterus, the perfectly balanced hormones, and the wonder of all that lies before you. 

To bring everything full circle: the simplest technique may very well be self-hypnosis: inexpensive, easy to learn, and accessible whether you are stuck in traffic, surrounded by tantruming toddlers, enjoying a quiet moment, anticipating news, or, yes, experiencing childbirth. People who learn relax (visualize, breath, and state an affirmation) begin to guide their mind into hypnosis. When this happens it becomes second nature to do the techniques well after the birth itself because they know how to quiet their minds and calm their bodies by breathing completely and refocusing. They don’t need anything more than their own awareness to access their wisdom and power-- and the entire family benefits. 

Craving more? There is more on these techniques here in this blog 6 Easy Steps to Create Change

If you’re a beginner and want more information about the upcoming Hypnobirthing® and hypnosis for birth in general consider joining the new but growing Facebook group. Want to connect directly? Contact me

Be Calm ...

and experience hypnosis!

Hypnosis can help in many ways. Curious Minds should Stay Curious. 

Boost Self-confidence⁣ • Lessen Anxiety • Grief• Cancer⁣ • Create Positive Mindset⁣ • Eliminate Limiting Beliefs⁣ • Improve Sleep⁣ • Manage Pain Better⁣ • Prepare for Childbirth⁣ • Enhance Performance⁣ • Heal & Resolve Grief⁣ • Change Habits⁣ • Weight Loss without Dieting⁣ • Smoking Cessation⁣ • Stress Reduction⁣ • Stop Teeth Grinding • & more

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