2. Relaxing your muscles
If you are tensing up in any way, the contractions will be more painful - like if you tense up for an injection.
Practice noticing any tension in your body then actively relaxing those muscles.
Focus on your jaw, your shoulders, your hands and your lower back.
Even sitting at your desk notice and tension and then release it.
The brain is amazing at diverting your attention.
By imagining yourself in a wonderful place - a beach, a garden, on a mountain you are able to distract yourself from what may be going on in your body.
An extra bonus is we tend to relax more when visualising so double whammy!
Think of some of your favourite places now and write them down so you can refer to them or your partner can on the big day.
Gently swaying or rocking can help to ease any tension in the muscles, release lactic acid build up, increase blood flow and make space for a baby to move down.
Using a birthing ball in the last few weeks of pregnancy as well as during the birth is really beneficial as you can do all those things in a comfortable, safe, and supported way.
This also helps strengthen the muscles in the perineum.
5. Prepare your birth partner
If your birth partner is feeling relaxed and confident and knows what you want and how to help you achieve that, then they are going to be one of your best assets.
If your partner is worried, panicky etc they will project that onto you - not great.
Go through your plan, practice breathing together calmly, rhythmically so that they can match your breathing, practice lower back massage, tell your parnter your visualisations - all this will give you both more confidence to put them into practice on the big day.