Coping with the pain of labor looks different for every woman, but what legendary birth elder Penny Simkin has found after assisting hundreds of women birth is that every labor that progresses well has a few elements in common - specifically Relaxation, Rhythm, and Ritual.
Relaxation - contractions are anything but relaxation, but if a woman is able to rest and let go between the surges, this is a good sign that she is coping well.
Rhythm - swaying, stroking, moaning, breathing, and thought processes that happen with rhythm indicate a controlled birth environment.
Ritual - repetition of the same rhythmic activity contraction after contraction tells us that the birthing person is in an instinctive zone and managing her labor successfully.
Hear Penny explain her 3 R's in this video: