Belief and Expectations
What do you believe and expect for your birth experience? Many of us are not aware of the impact our personal beliefs and expectations have on our birth experience and our lives in general.
If you imagine your birth experience to be very challenging, it most likely will be simply because you believe it will. Then unconsciously you’ll set things up, a “self-fulfilling” prophecy to make your beliefs true and be able to say “I told you so!”
The same with expectations. If you expect the worst, it may very well happen. Yet if you expect the best possible experience, that too can happen!
The point is, things we think about in our minds are really just thoughts floating around and most of them are untrue about ourselves or a situation.
Beliefs about ourselves come from years of personal experiences we’ve had with our parents, school, other relationships, and so on. If you were told you would never do well in math, and told repeatedly throughout your life, well you start owning it and believing it, and even demonstrate it! The surprise could be you are actually a genius at math but were never encouraged in a positive way to discover this masked talent.
When it comes to childbirth, so many women tell me stories about what happened to their friend in labor, unfortunate stories. What’s happening is these moms start thinking it’s going to happen to them. There’s no reason to really think this is true, but it’s being imagined in the mind.
What you imagine is powerful. From a physiological point of view, your nervous systems can’t tell the difference between imagination and reality. Your body just responds to emotional signals.
If you fear the birth experience, or “labor pain”, have anxious thoughts about it, it will kick-off a cascade of physiological events triggering the Stress Response which has the potential of slowing, or stopping your labor.
What do you believe?
Start believeing in your abilities to birth more and imagine a spectacular birth experience! You’ll most likely have one!