Additional Preparation

Additional Preparation Resources for Your Doula Journey

Are you excited to start now, but you still have to wait for your in-person classes and workshops to start? We understand how you feel, but don’t worry, there is a lot you can do before you start your work with DTD! In fact, our doula training shouldn’t be your first step to becoming a doula – the more you prepare and do beforehand, the more you will get out of our work together. You’ll also be more prepared for attending births after our in-person training!

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Where Should I Start?

People experience our doula training on different levels depending on where they are in their lives. They also have different backgrounds and areas of specialized knowledge. So, knowing the best way for you to prepare is up to you!

Doula Training Aspiring Doulas

Here Are 14 Suggestions for Amplifying
Your Knowledge Before Your DTD Work:

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Start with the Reading List

“Read the recommended books to prepare for the training, and then begin on our Certification program reading list for more. This includes The Thinking Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth or Optimal Care in Childbirth by Henci Goer and Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin.

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Take the DTD Childbirth Class Earlier

While this course is set up as a precursor to our training, extending it from three to four days, you can take the DTD Childbirth Class even earlier if there’s a slot available.

View Course Schedule

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Watch Birth Videos

We recommend: Pregnant In America; Orgasmic Birth; Gentle Birth Choices; Giving Birth; Trial of Labor; and Birth Into Being. Some of these are on Netflix, Amazon Instant Download, or are at your local library. The older videos have lengthy takes of real people in labor without music or voice over, which is hard to find in current films. There are also many birth videos on YouTube – you can even visit Dr. Amy’s channel is AmyL Gilliland, to see other birth videos.

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Attend Local Doula Group Meetings

If there is a local doula group in your area, go to their meetings. Do lots of listening (smile!). If there isn’t a group, locate any doulas in your area that seem open to connecting with you. Offer to take them out for coffee or lunch (you pay for it) and ask them about the general birth landscape in your area. Previewing what the challenges may be for you is very helpful to know before you come to the training. This person may be a source of referrals in the future so think ahead about how to make a good impression.

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Go to La Leche League Meetings or Gatherings of New Parents

Tell them you are training to be a doula. Sincerely listen to their birth and postpartum stories without judgment. Ask them what they liked about the kind of support they received and what they might have wanted to be different. Your emphasis should be on listening sensitively without trying to fix it or selling anyone on the idea of hiring you as a doula. Hanging out with new parents and watching how group leaders build their confidence can be really helpful!

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Learn More About Breastfeeding

Take the DTD Infant Feeding Course – this is required for certification, why wait?

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Why not take the DTD Postpartum Course Now?

This course stands alone, and you are not required to take the DTD Childbirth Course or any trainings first.

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Start Building Your Referral Network

Start reaching out to those in your geographic area where you intend to practice. In your training we will give you a checklist of the seven most important resources to know about. For now, search for what interests you. For example: Who does counseling for perinatal mood disorders? How do you refer to a lactation consultant? What are the choices in your area and how do women pay for them? Does anyone offer placenta services or belly binding after birth? Is there popular parent support groups in your area? If you can, attend meetings and listen to parents. What resources are available for specific ethnic groups? Knowing about these cultural resources can be really helpful as a doula.

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Read Some High-Quality Doula Blogs

Our favorites are:

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Start Your Marketing Plan Now

The DTD Business and Marketing Course is available on Thinkific as part of your training tuition. You can take it at any time, including right now. The course includes exercises to begin your Marketing and Business plans, and Finding Your Business Name.

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Go to Births!

If you are asked to go to a birth, go! Be a friend who is supportive and don’t use the word “doula”. You might think you know how a doula would act, but you also may not – which can do a lot of damage to your doula community. Instead, focus on being encouraging, remind them and their partner/family member they can ask questions, and bring the Birth Partner book with you to look up positions and comfort measures. You don’t need to suggest anything, just follow their lead.

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Browse in Open Facebook Groups for Doulas.

DTD Professionals Group, DTD Alumni Group, The Doula Group, Doula Talk, and Birth Professionals of the World are all welcoming for doulas before they have had their training.

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Register & Pay for Your Doula Training!

Committing your money and your time creates the path for becoming a doula to happen in your life! It can’t happen if you don’t commit. (Read the financial policies first!)

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We Promise It Will Be Worth the Wait

Doulaing The Doula birth doula workshops are worth the wait! Dr. Amy Gilliland is one of the best trainers available. No one has the qualifications, experience, or passion that she has for doulaing you into the best doula you can be.

“I’ve made a commitment to you and helping
you develop into your best doula self!”
– Dr. Amy Gilliland

If you are reading this and there are only a few weeks before your workshop, don’t panic! None of this is required nor does it mean that you will be unprepared or get less out of the training. You will want or need to do a lot of the things on this list anyway and it is perfectly fine to do them after you’ve taken your training.