Rachel had the opportunity to sit down with two of our New Beginnings people, Jessiqua and Amanda, and discuss how they talk about what a Doula does.
The Elevator Pitch
Can you describe what you do in just a few sentences? The famous elevator pitch. What do you say to people when you are asked what you do?
Inspired Birth Pro has questions to help with this short pitch. Such as: Identify your target audience, identify a problem they have and figure out what they need. What you are going to do to help them and what type of experience are they are going to have?
“I teach women’s health and I am an advocate.”Jessiqua
“I represent the mothers, sisters, aunts, cousins, and grandmothers who would have been a part of birth before it was moved into the hospital. I bring with me the knowledge, experiences, and support that they would have offered. To bring that into the modern birth world.”Amanda
“The hospital takes care of this bottom rung of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, they tend to not do as well at taking care of emotional needs, social needs, etc. So a doula helps fill in those gaps. They help fill in the gaps of what’s missing.”Rachel
Competitiveness Between Doulas
Sometimes there is a competitiveness between doulas in the community. All doulas could go into a room and appeal to different women, and certain women would gravitate towards them.
My community does not have enough doulas in the area to be competitive. They are more, ‘I can’t take more clients, does anyone have an opening.’ or ‘I don’t click with this client they would be better suited for you.’ They are more cooperative.Amanda
However, Jessiqua says her area is very competitive.
Whenever I am feeling competitive it may be in an area that I feel unsure. I haven’t quite reached my full competency. I may feel like I don’t belong there, and that’s what makes me feel a little more aggressive and competitive. Otherwise, if I’m in my niche or zone, I may not feel that competition, because I am confident.Jessiqua
Go into the community confident in yourself and what you do, and be confident enough in other doula’s ability to work as a team.
We want every mom to have the best experience she can have, which means the best fit of doula she can have. And if we are not the best fit, then she should have the choice to work with someone else. Then she would have the best experience possible.
We want to encourage doulas to go the collaborative route. If a doula feels they have to compete with others doulas to gain a client, then it’s probably not the best fit for the client. Confidence in who you are is the key point. The desire to help women find the right fit, and the understanding that we know we can’t fit everybody’s needs.
Competitiveness is from a place of fear. Fear of someone else having what we want and the desire to smash it down to get what we want. Women would feel better being with a doula that felt secure in themselves.
I think that so often, pregnant person’s sympathy is at 1000% percent. They are feeling emotions from everyone. We affect their pregnancy as their doula with our own state of being.Jessiqua
A Place of Confidence
How did you step into a place of confidence with yourself? How have you found that within yourself as a doula with your work and business when you are helping women?
I think that a lot of it is coming to terms with ourselves. We have an advantage. That advantage is that we have had children ourselves, and that we have had pleasant and negative birth experiences. Through that experience it gives us empathy. We also are mothers, which means we have the humbling that comes with motherhood. When it comes to helping women and other people who are giving birth, it’s like, “I know this road.”
I see doula work as a branch of my greater work and purpose of teaching women and being an advocate. That freed me up the most, realizing that being a doula is only part of what I do. I work in the field of women.Jessiqua
If I need to do something I will figure out how to do it. I will do it the best I can. I don’t think I’m perfect, and I don’t always think I’m right, but I’m trying to do what is right and good. I don’t have time to second guess myself or worry.Amanda
I had to do deep reflection in myself. Feeling who I am and what fits for me. I can’t be who I am not. Am I being me or a false me? My sense of confidence comes from my sense of me. If I am being who I truly am I feel better. I strive to work towards that in my work and as a doula.Rachel
Different people are drawn to different things. We shouldn’t hide who we are. People will find who we are and gravitate towards what they need.
What Do You Say Next?
After your elevator speech, what do you say next? Most people will take what you have said and begin a discussion based on their backgrounds or needs.
What are your needs? What are you looking for? The more your interact with them the more your antenna will pick up things. That discussion is the best
Do they need a guardian, do they need an advocate, do you need a hip-squeezer, etc. What do they need?
Birth is a divine appointment. When we believe we need our client just as much as they need us. We learn something from the experience as well. We are seeking that middle ground, as a spark or connection, to be good for both of us.Jessiqua
What does the mom need? Does she need a massage, a cheerleader, etc. What she thinks she needs may not be what she actually needs, so responding to her in the moment.Amanda
Doulas are looking to figure out, first, what a woman, partner, or families may need.
What Can We Work On?
Find a way to identify yourself and how you work in the doula world. What’s one thing your can work towards being your authentic self as a doula or business worker? What’s one way to find that confidence?
Whether it’s drawing clear boundaries to make time for ourselves and things we are passionate about, like Amanda. Or, like Jessica, doing better follow-ups for clients and paperwork. Or, Creating a vision for yourself through a vision board. and asking yourself who do you want to be as a person, doula, family, etc.?
‘How far we make it and how big of an impact we make is not determined by how well we can fix things, but rather on how well we can carry on.’
It’s not our jobs as doulas to fix things, it’s our job to carry on with broken people and our broken selves, and that what determines the impact we make.Jessiqua
Thanks Jessiqua for the perfect ending quote for a great discussion! If you want to watch the discussion check it out here:
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