Journey to your happy place
Visualisation is a simple technique to help you relax during labour and birth. “Think of a place where you feel happy – it could be your garden, a beach you’ve visited, or a place in time when life was great,” says Jackie. “Then tell your birth partner all about your ‘happy place’.
If it’s nearby, pay a visit. If it’s a beach in Thailand, show him or her a photo.” In the weeks leading up to labour, put your feet up on the couch regularly, shut your eyes, and ask your partner to describe all the little details as you paint a picture in your mind. If you’re not used to using this technique, it’s perfectly normal to feel self-conscious, but it’s good to get over those giggles before the big day. Once you’ve mastered it, visualising this happy place distracts your brain and physically tricks your body into relaxation mode, which is great for pregnancy and even more useful in labour. “Having your birth partner describe your happy place will help you visualise it,” says Jackie.