Our hormones and mindset have a strong influence on our level of confidence and impacts how we manage stress. It has been reported, based on research, that strong and effective leaders have lower cortisol levels and higher testosterone levels (yes, women carry the testosterone hormone too). But… did you know that your body language affects both of these hormones?
Research conducted by body language experts shows that striking a “power pose” can alter these hormones to a degree that increases your level of confidence and curbs your reaction to stressful situations. Remember when your mother used to remind you to sit up straight? I think they knew this all along, even though they didn’t know what to call it.
My favorite super hero as a kid was Wonder Woman. I loved everything about her; her outfit, her pretty eyes, and beautiful hair. Most importantly, I liked how she was a woman and she was just as powerful as the Bionic Man and the Incredible Hulk. She made me feel like I could be powerful too. I even have a collector’s doll of her, still in the box.
One of the most recognized “power poses” is the Wonder Woman pose. It’s demonstrated with feet spread apart, head held high, chest out, and hands on both hips with elbows extended. There is something about that pose that makes people feel strong, confident and powerful. Even if you don’t really feel that way, if someone catches a glimpse of you posed in that manner, they are likely to perceive you as a confident person.
Some may argue that something as simple as a pose couldn’t possibly be as effective as it’s claimed to be. Mindset most definitely plays a part in how you judge anything. If you strongly disagree with something, with or without reason, you are sure to prove yourself right (self-fulfilling prophecy).
I’m a strong believer in the power of thoughts and mentality (mindset). If striking a power pose mentally takes you to a place of confidence, go for it! If posing in a position of power helps you to release stress, do it! Make power posing a part of your routine on a daily basis, before important meetings, before a keynote address or presentation, or whenever you need to channel your energy and turn your confidence dial up. Whether it is a sitting or standing pose, if you think of that pose as your confidence booster, then that’s what it will do for you. The same way athletes use personal rituals before games to boost their confidence and get them charged up, you can use a power pose the same way. It’s a matter of the mind and your personal expectations and beliefs. We can train our minds to believe what we want it to believe.
As for me, I’m going to channel my favorite superhero, Wonder Women, and show up with confidence when it really counts.
Go ahead girl! Strike a pose and be confident in YOU!
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