Preventing / Minimizing Trauma
for Birth Professionals
Here are some things you can do to help prevent and/or minimize trauma:

  • Build your emotional resilience

  • Find and address limiting, inaccurate beliefs (EFT can be very helpful with this).

  • Seek out support from individuals (other doulas, midwives, therapist, friends & family), or
    support groups (online and/or locally).

  • Reduce your stress level where possible.

  • Find healthful ways to manage/alleviate unavoidable tension.

  • Identify, validate and strengthen your healthy coping mechanisms (meditation, deep breaths,
    humor, mindfulness, faith, tears, talking it out, hugging a tree, etc.).

  • Learn new coping techniques and practices, to augment your existing tools for maintaining or
    regaining your balance when adversity or challenges occur.

  • Work on your self-esteem.

  • Cultivate emotional flexibility.

  • Make time to do things that bring you joy.

  • Take care of your health (eat well, exercise, get adequate rest, etc.).

  • Maintain healthy relationships; release or reduce those that are draining.

  • Have realistic expectations

  • Be prepared for unwished-for surprises at births. Some things are simply beyond our ability to
    control, no matter how well we prepare and regardless of doing "everything right" to avoid it.

  • Release perfectionism, negativity, the need or desire to "save" people (especially those who do
    not want you to save them!). No matter how experienced or knowledgeable you are, nor how
    hard you try, you won't be able to prevent challenging births, disappointing births, difficult
    births.

  • Optimism is helpful, as is the ability to accept "next best thing" compromises when necessary
    (disappointment is still very reasonable in that case).

  • Do your best to avoid taking your own emotional baggage into births. If you've had a difficult birth
    yourself and you never cleared the trauma from it, it may negatively affect your ability to be present
    and provide support (especially if the situation reminds you somehow of your own trauma). This is
    true no matter how long ago the trauma occurred. Or if you've recently attended a difficult birth, just
    walking back into a labor situation may be hard for you and can affect your emotional balance and
    ability to provide calm support. Address these issues as soon as you can, through EFT, talking with
    peers or a trusted friend or therapist, support groups, or any other method that works for you.

  • Increase your understanding/awareness of what you're feeling and why. This includes learning to be
    aware of things that "trigger" you, or activate difficult memories. Once you've identified them, do what
    you can to reduce your vulnerability to triggers. EFT can be a very useful tool to help you lower the
    "emotional charge" on the things that trigger you.

  • Be willing to acknowledge and express your feelings, even if only to yourself.

  • Learn to recognize when you are doing your best in any particular moment.

  • Challenge your perspective - there are often other, equally accurate ways to see things.

  • If you experience trauma, allow yourself to feel what you feel and to be aware of sensations in your
    body too (may help you to avoid dissociating, freezing, going "out of body").

  • Notice without judging. Feelings are neither good nor bad-- they just are.

  • If you do experience trauma, responses like shaking, crying, trembling, numbness, anger, overwhelm,
    and fear (to name a few) are normal. Allow yourself/others to express them without repressing or
    attempting to eliminate these physical and emotional reactions. Some experts believe this can help
    you to move through/clear the experience so you're less likely to suffer long-term negative effects.

  • Learn EFT and teach it to your partner, doula, friends and family, etc. EFT may help to lower your risk
    of trauma, and it's a very powerful first aid tool if you do experience a traumatic event.
EILEEN SULLIVAN, CERTIFIED EFT PRACTITIONER (EFTCERT-I)                                                                  EMAIL: AREYOUTAPPING (AT) YAHOO (DOT) COM                                                                                            (704) 905-4665
While EFT has produced remarkable clinical results, it has only been in use in its current form since 1992. Therefore, it must still be considered to be in the experimental stage. You are an expert on your own health, so please take full responsibility for
your use of EFT. Eileen Sullivan is not a licensed health professional. She offers EFT as a certified EFT practitioner, ordained interfaith minister, and certified holistic doula. Where appropriate, please consult your healthcare practitioners regarding your
use of EFT. It is VITAL to note that you should not stop taking any prescribed medications, nor alter your dosage, without the advice of the prescribing physician.
E M O T I O N A L  F R E E D O M  T E C H N I Q U E S  ( E F T )  F O R  F E R T I L I T Y ,  P R E G N A N C Y ,  B I R T H  &  B E Y O N D
This EFT oriented website is provided as a public courtesy to help expand the use of EFT in the world.  While Gary Craig, the founder of EFT, encourages such efforts, he cannot evaluate or endorse the multitudes of EFT websites that exist.  
This website represents the good faith ideas of its author, but not necessarily those of Gary Craig. You can learn more about EFT, including EFT training and certification programs, by visiting the
EFTUniverse.com website.
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