“One singular sensation, every little step she takes
One thrilling combination, every move that she makes
One smile and suddenly nobody else will do
You know you’ll never be lonely with you-know-who”
By now you would know I am not famous for my music collection. When searching for these words from the musical A Chorus Line, a message popped up on the bottom of my screen, “Songs you love if you love nerds”.
So, shamelessly, I will use the above reference to illustrate what I was privileged enough to learn when graciously taken to Ted Talk sensation Amy Cuddy’s presentation last week.
Body language counts. It really counts. “The body is always shaping the mind”.
Our posture reveals our feelings and small changes can have big impacts. The way you stand. The way you sit. All of this has a vast influence on the way you feel about yourself and the impression you leave on your audience, whether it be an audience of one or 100.
Cuddy also talked about the scientific benefits “Power Poses” or “Expansive Poses” have on your mental state.
She said opening up your chest and upper body is the most important element of the pose, and you should do this prior to showing up to work or a meeting. This power pose needs to be held for about two minutes to create the physical benefits.
How fantastic that such a small body manoeuvre can have such a fabulous impact on your own psyche and those around you.
So, prior to your next important meeting or presentation, take Cuddy’s advice and adopt powerful poses. Sit up straight, stand tall and expand your body. “Acting the way you want to be perceived works”.
Cuddy shared that “people who power posed before job interviews performed so much better. It was not what they said, it was how they said it.”
Your body and mind are conversing constantly.
There’s even sad or happy walks. Cuddy suggests “when walking at work, take long steps and swing your arms. This will help you exude confidence and have a positive impact on your mental state.”
Studies have shown by improving your body language, you can actually decrease your cortisol (stress levels) and feel more confident and risk tolerant.
Body language plays a major role throughout your day. It changes the way people see you on a subconscious level.
Of course, thinking about how we project ourselves all day is enough to drive anyone into a navel gazing frenzy, but knowing there is a “singular sensation” power move to naturally improve your body language is a gift.
Your Small Act that is sure to have a Major Impact is to start each day with a “two minute power pose”.
“You may just have found your thrilling combination.”