I know it sounds funny, but please read on.
Our body language and posture affect the way other people see us and how we interact with the world. The body positions that we take also alter our physical chemistry. It has been shown that the postures that we take can either raise or lower hormone levels in our body whether the posture is performed intentionally or not. Being mindful of and altering our body language can help you achieve your goals and change your future.
In the animal kingdom size is linked to dominance. Animals will assume postures where they are perceived as being larger to express dominance and will make them selves appear smaller to try to become invisible or cower to other animals that are more dominant. This is innate to the human animal as well. It is programmed in our biology to hunch over or close our posture when we are frightened or insecure, and to open up and raise our arms when we are prideful or confident.
High Power Couch Pose
Postures in which we expand our body are called high power poses and postures that minimize our body are called lower power poses by Psychologist Amy Cuddy. She researched the hormone levels of cortisol and testosterone after individuals performed high power poses and low power poses and found that testosterone levels increased and cortisol levels decreases after performing high power poses and the opposite occurred with low power poses after only 2 minutes of holding the posture. Higher levels of testosterone enhance self confidence and reduce depression symptoms. Lower levels of cortisol help relax the fight or flight instinct and help us respond to stress in a more relaxed manner.
Examples of high power poses include:
standing upright with your hands on your hips and chest expanded
placing your hands together behind your head
raising your arms over your head
sitting with your legs spread apart
Examples of low power poses include:
crossing your armsholding the back of your neck
shrugging your shoulders into your ears
sitting with your legs crossed on top of each other
Performing high power poses will increase your confidence and can help give you the courage to go after what you desire. As little as 2 minutes a day will give you results. I try to perform high power poses whenever I can. When I feel that my confidence needs a boost I find a place that I can be alone and put my hands above my head. Using this body language shows authority and dominance and may not always be appropriate to exhibit in public. This exercise will fuel your ability to conquer your goals and achieve success in your endeavors.