Doula Business Chat #4 - Staying Current
To stay current is to keep yourself up to date or informed on a particular topic. Staying current in the field of childbirth is essential for doulas and childbirth professionals. The concept of staying current could also include being informed on current trends for our customers, latest news and options for our local birth community and trends in the childbirth field. Continuing education is also important for professionals that carry a certification as those usually need to be renewed on a regular basis.
For the Doula Business Chat #4 we covered this topic and were thrilled to have Rebecca Dekker from Evidence Based Birth as our special guest. Rebecca shares how the frustration surrounding current research being hidden behind a pay wall lead her to the creation of her site.
Ways to Stay Current
From in person events to childbirth journals, there are a variety of ways to stay current. I have compiled a list (with links) below with my ideas along with those that came up in the chat. If you have ideas to add please leave a comment on the blog.
Reading Medical Research
Rebecca Dekker, shared a few ways to access research articles. Research can be expensive and difficult to access and hard to sift through as well.
- uptodate.com - Great resource, but very expensive to access
- Cochran Library - Lamaze Members get free access
- PubMed - Search and view article abstracts for free
If you enjoy research, but find it hard to process you will probably love both of these blogs. They take the research and present it in a way that makes it easy to understand.
I love attending conferences and find them to be an excellent way to keep up to date. While they can be expensive, the experience is so worth it. Attendees are able to learn by attending sessions as well as learn by connecting with other attendees.
- LamazeICEA 2015 Conference (I'll be there!)
- DONA (virtual conference this year)
- CAPPA Conference 2015
- Midwifery Today Conferences
- American College of Nurse Midwives Exhibition and Meeting (I'll be there)
There are so many continuing education opportunities I won't even try to list them all. They range from in person events to online classes. I have chosen a few that I have personally attended or were suggested on the chat.
- Online Doula Workshops (from my doula trainer Rae Davies)
- Birth Story Listening through Birthing From Within (recommended by Michelle Beaulieu)
Birth Journals are another excellent resource. Journal articles require a small investment of time but can be packed with good information.
- Lamaze – The Journal of Perinatal Education
- SQUAT Birth Journal
- DONA’s International Doula Magazine
- Midwifery Today
Books have always been a staple of staying current. There are so many wonderful books that I couldn't name them all. Brief Coaching for Lasting Solutions (Norton Professional Books) was recommended by Michelle Beaulieu during our chat. This sounds like a wonderful resource for sharpening our skills of interviewing and working with clients in their decision making process.
Announcing our Book Club
I'm super excited to announce a Doula Business Chat Book Club! The 1st Book Club Title is Mindful Birthing: Training the Mind, Body, and Heart for Childbirth and Beyond We will discuss this book at Doula Business Chat #6 scheduled for Tuesday February 24th, 2015 at 10pm ET. I would love to hear suggestions for future book clubs. Please give your input in the comments of this blog.
Networking with your local birth community
Staying current with local birthing practices is another way to keep our practice up to date. In person networking events with your peer in your community is a wonderful way to do this. Connecting with doulas over coffee or a meal and discussing the latest practice at local hospitals, options available to the community and more is really invaluable. I have made it a goal for 2015 to do more networking in my community.
We have put together lots of ideas for way to stay current in our field. What ways do you enjoy? Is there something we should add to our list? Please submit a comment and give your input. Let's learn from each other!
- Alice Turner