Birth preparation practices for busy women

Listen to this post LIVE with Esther!

Esther Jones. I’ve been working as a Hypnobirthing practitioner since 2007.  

In this post Esther is going to talk about four practices for preparing for childbirth that can be easily incorporated into the busiest of days.

“So, I remember my first pregnancy well, because I seemed to have lots of time.

After work I would go for a swim or do a pregnancy yoga class, or if I was tired, I’d just have a nap on the sofa.

My partner and I even went away for a couple of lazy weekends to the mountains.

Of course, my second and third pregnancies were nothing like that at all.

I had other children to look after and rarely had a spare hour to prepare for my next birth.

Luckily, the experience of my first birth helped me to understand that the most important preparation we can do for birth doesn’t take a couple of free hours.”


Get your mind in the right place for birth

The most important things we can do can be easily incorporated into any busy day. So, if you’re working, have older children to look after, or just have a busy life, here are some things you can do to get your mind in the right place for birth.


Learning to use your breath effectively is key for a calm labour.

When we’re anxious or scared, our breathing tends to get shallow and to quicken. This is our sympathetic nervous system switching on and preparing us for flight or fight.

When we give birth, it’s important that we are able to stay in our calm zone, the parasympathetic nervous system, where our bodies are in a relaxed and optimal state for childbirth. 

Whenever you feel any stress during the day, use this as an opportunity to practise calming your nervous system.

You can use the Hypnobirthing calm breath. This is a breath in to the count of four and a breath out to the count of eight, breathing in and out through the nose.

When you breathe in, imagine you’re breathing in relaxation, and when you breathe out, imagine you’re breathing out stress, directing it all the way down through the body.

Notice how your body calms down on this long out breath. 

So, take every opportunity you can to reconnect with your breath, learning how to use it as your number one tool.

Use it to leave your busy mind behind and to sink into your body.


You can watch the video on affirmations to hear the ones that I usually use in my courses, and you can, of course, create your own affirmations.

They are a wonderful way to keep your mind in a calm, fear-free place and to just give yourself a little injection of confidence during the day.

Say them out loud to yourself in the mirror in the morning, or recite them in the car if you drive to work.

Print them out and carry them around and whenever you have a moment during the day, just take them out, read through them and feel ready for anything.



Our bodies respond to our thoughts just as they do to real life action, and if a thought is accompanied by an image, then it’s even more powerful.

So, create some lovely visualisations around your birth and bring them to life throughout your day.

Feel how these visualisations affect your emotions and how your body feels.

You could imagine yourself in labour, confident in your birthing space, rising and falling with the surges.

Or, it could simply be an image in which you are strong and empowered, capable of anything.

Or, perhaps it’s you, radiant and holding your newborn baby in your arms.

Watch your thoughts

So, to stay calm and relaxed during childbirth means trusting ourselves and our bodies.

As you go about your day to day, see what thoughts arise about you, about your body, about the birth.

Are they helpful thoughts that leave you feeling happy and empowered, or are they thoughts that create anxiety and doubt?

If that’s the case, do this simple mindfulness technique of just noticing how that feels in your body.

Are your shoulders tense?

Have you got butterflies?

Stay with your body and observe what happens when you have a particular thought.

And now, using an affirmation, or a visualisation, replace that intrusive thought with a new, intentional thought.

As you do this, more and more, you’ll get used to noticing how different thoughts trigger different responses in the body.

So, remember to take time to try these ideas of different ways you can be preparing your mind for birth, even when you can’t seem to find the time. 


Watch the video

Esther shares the 'four birth preparation practices' with you!

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