The traditional advice about self care has merit; commit to your spiritual practice, go to a yoga class, learn meditation, exercise more, eat healthily, take time with friends and family, take time for the things you love to do. Often engaging in these activities can clear the space within us to work more effectively and efficiently; in the long run they not only bring us more joy but also buy us more time.
However, as birth workers we know we cannot always engage in these activities when we need to or want to; our schedules are erratic. Just as we dip our big toe into a warm bath, we get called to a birth. Just as we commit to eating healthily, we find ourselves in at a three day birth and the only food available is Kentucky Fried Chicken. So we must rely on our ability to be resilient.
Being resilient means internalizing our practices and bringing them with us wherever we go. What are the practices (besides kegels) that you can do without breaking the rhythm of what you are doing? Is there a certain yoga posture that you can assume while waiting for the centrifuge to stop spinning? Can you practice breathing into your toes while you support a client in labor? Can you feel the pull of your spine to the heavens and your feet firmly grounded on the floor while you do otherwise mundane tasks like charting?