Birth like a Mammal...
One of the areas I touch on in my hypnobirthing classes is the fact that women are mammals, sharing the characteristics of growing their offspring and producing milk to sustain their young.
The environment that cats, dogs, and lionesses all need to give birth is somewhere safe, private, and where they will be undisturbed. Often this is a location which is also warm and dark. They also tend to take themselves away from the herd or pack in order to achieve this.
How is this relevant for women? Given that we are all mammals fundamentally, women ideally need similar conditions to enable them to 'plug into' the mammal part of the brain during birth. So environment is actually really important. Crucial in fact.
Have a think about your choices when it comes to place of birth, what's the environment like? Does it feel private to you, can you have the lights low, do you feel safe there? What can you do to create these conditions wherever you choose to have your baby?
Thinking about these and other factors around your labour will help create the conditions for you to have a better, more relaxed birth. Remember, humans are animals too!