I’m Ria Oliver, the founder of The Simple Birth Company and creator of the Mind, Body and Soul Hypnobirthing Programme. I am a mum to two of my own lovely hypno-birthed babies, Fletcher (3) and Finley (1) and we live in the rural town of Letchworth, Hertfordshire. I also form one third of the specialist pregnancy service team at The Secret Garden in Hitchin where I work alongside B.A.B.I.E.S and MamaBabyBliss to provide care, support, guidance and information to local expectant parents.
I am a hypnobirthing practitioner (RCM accredited training), certified aromatherapy for childbirth consultant (RCM accredited training) and am currently studying towards my nero-linguistic programming for birth workers accreditation.
I specialise in dealing with clients with fears and anxieties about birth and created the Mind, Body and Soul Hypnobirthing Programme to help my clients acknowledge and overcome these fears, by re-framing previous negative experiences, alleviating anxieties and building confidence and positive birth expectancy.
My success rate with my clients is extremely high with 96% of my mums reporting having a positive birth experience, no matter what type of birth they had, 72% of which also only relied on natural forms of pain relief and 78% had straight forward vaginal deliveries.
I started my own hypnobirthing journey in 2015 when I fell pregnant with my first child. My husband Michael and I undertook hypnobirthing classes which not only enabled us to prepare for and genuinely look forward to the birth of our first child, but to also feel like we were bringing him into this world together, as a team.
We went on to birth our son Fletcher in February 2016 and while we encountered some unexpected complications and changes to our birth plan during this birth, we still had a really positive birth experience. I credit hypnobirthing with enabling me to stay calm and relaxed despite the changes and challenges we faced. I didn’t realise the power hypnobirthing had on my experience until I started to talk to other mums, and even now with some clients that I teach, who have similar birth stories to my own yet they are traumatised by theirs, and that is not how I felt about mine.
As a result, I realised I had found a passion in life and promptly trained to be a hypnobirthing practitioner with a branded hypnobirthing company whilst on my maternity leave to enable me to teach other women to take control of their births, re-frame their thinking about their experiences and go on to have positive birth experiences. I set up my hypnobirthing company just a few months after my son’s birth, and immediately started to teach local and national expectant couples.
I had experienced and wanted to impart on to others, that birth wasn't about what physically happens during labour, but about how you think and feel about what happens, and that is where woman's birthing power is held.
In November 2017, my second son Finley was welcomed into the world in the most beautiful and calm birth I could possibly have imagined. I once again used my hypnobirthing techniques to tune into my body and was able to trust my natural urges to allow my baby to move down gently at its own pace. While my first birth had been a positive experience, I still had to work really hard on not allowing any of the complications we had faced to become fears throughout my pregnancy and change my experience or impact on my second birth.
Having experienced two very different, yet very positive births, I was then inspired to write my own hypnobirthing programme; The Mind, Body and Soul Hypnobirthing Programme, incorporating all the techniques I had used during my own births with the additional birth related training I have undertaken. This programme launched in October 2018 and I officially became a completely independent hypnobirthing provider. I am now able to grow and develop my business in line with the needs and aspirations of my client base.
When I’m not working you will often find me at soft play centres, swimming pools or walking through the woods with my boys and dining out or enjoying a film with my husband. But most of all I love to be curled up in my PJ’s on the sofa, under a blanket with a mug of hot tea (sometimes gin and tonic) watching TV! I am a cancer star sign and love the creature comforts of home!
Below you can see various photos of me during or after the births of my beautiful boys!