New Beginnings Doula Training

New Beginnings Doula Training
Courses for doulas and online childbirth education

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Maslows Heirarchy of Needs-Self Actualization

5. Self-Actualization
This deals with finally reaching our full potential. This is how we find meaning in our lives.

This is hopefully the end point of our work with women in labor.  I would hope this is something that all women could find regardless of their choices.  Notice this is so much more than a healthy baby and mom, which seems to be the end point for most medical practitioners.  Of course this is important, that's why safety and physiological needs are at the bottom of the pyramid.  They are the base, but also notice that there is much more at the top.  In all reality, the minimum we should be providing is safety and physiological needs.  To truly come away from an experience in life having reached this upper level, all other levels of needs must be met.

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Birth is a Journey: Does it have to be life changing?

  • One woman might have to climb on an overfilled boat, risking her life and nearly dying as she escapes over the ocean to come to this land. This experience could certainly be life altering. It may very well color the rest of her life, positively or negatively. (I overcame this amazing struggle and here I am triumphant! OR Holy crap, that was SO hard I don’t know if I can go on! By the way, neither response is “right”. No one would judge the woman with the 2nd response.)
  • One woman may buy an airplane ticket, sit on a comfortable 747 and fly to America with a nice smooth flight and landing. She is happy to be in America. Those welcoming her are glad she is here safe and sound. She may only travel by plane 2-4 times in her life, so it is pretty memorable. But the journey itself probably wouldn’t be life changing; it would simply be a journey.
  • One woman may learn to fly an ultra-light plane to lead a flock of geese into America teaching them to migrate. This experience could certainly be empowering and life altering.