So most people living in the year 2014 know by now that there is a mind-body connection, usually in that direction. How you think and feel is manifested in your body and the material world. For example, you are feeling depressed and therefore you gain weight, feel sluggish, sleepy and your immune system breaks down and you catch a cold.
Research has now proved that there is a body-mind connection. Meaning, you can change how you feel by changing the way you move and hold your body. Tony Robbins has been saying his for years but recently Amy Cuddy, a social scientist and professor at Harvard Business School conducted an experiment. She wanted to test whether there were measurable changes in people depending on how they moved and held their posture.
Power poses are universal expressions of confidence and power and look like this:
Low energy poses are also universal and look like this.
Dr. Cuddy discovered that in nature and in humans, the dominant leader usually has a high testosterone level and a low cortisol level. Testosterone is usually associated with masculinity, aggressiveness, and power whereas cortisol is related to stress levels.
The subjects came in, they measured their hormone levels from their saliva, they held either a power pose or a low energy pose and then they ran a risk behavior test with a gambling experiment and then took another saliva sample.
The results were astounding. Just holding a power pose for 2 minutes can dramatically change the hormone levels either way. This can dramatically change someone’s life!
But will the results last? Will “Faking It Until You Make It?” truly transform one for good?
As someone who grew up very shy and awkward, I can attest to this, though I didn’t know that was what I was doing. I had found some “charisma” exercises in a book and found them quite empowering. One of them was just standing looking at yourself in a mirror for 2 minutes with total love and acceptance. This was surprisingly difficult at first. We are programmed not to love ourselves and to nitpick and find all our faults. By doing this for a few minutes everyday, I can tell you I was a different person. Within a few months I was actually going on acting auditions and taking classes as an actor! This was unbelievable to my former self! Within 2 years I was a television host with millions of viewers every day.
So this can have huge effects on our children. Just this morning was the first of 3 days of standardized testing for my son’s middle school. So, what did we do besides a good breakfast and a sound night’s sleep…power poses!
My next student’s recital will definitely include some power posing before performance.
You should definitely watch the TED Talk. It’s one of the 50 most viewed!