We all know that body language affects other peoples perception of us, and can be used to encourage positive interactions . This isn’t new news, the thing we haven’t – until recently, been able to prove is whether our own positive body language can improve your OWN state of mind…until now.
Amy Cuddy (who is a social psychologist) has done some experiments with fascinating results.
She did 2 experiments: The first was getting people to sit in a submissive/insecure posture for 2 minutes e.g. legs and arms crossed, bent over, hunched etc.
She found that after only 2 minutes the natural chemical levels in the body of the subjects had significantly changed.
Their testosterone (dominance chemical) had dropped by 20% and their cortisol (stress chemical) has risen by 15%….after ONLY 2 minutes, bonkers!
Predictably, but I think even more interestingly it was found that, after spending 2 minutes in a dominant posture e.g arms across backs of chair, legs spread, hands clasped behind head e.t.c the difference was equally as significant.
Their testosterone levels increased by 20% and levels of cortisol in the subjects decreased by 25%
The outcome of this chemical change is that in dominance postures you can’t fail to feel more calm, in control and confidently empowered as your chemicals speak to your brain – hurrah!
This is fascinating stuff, and very workable into your everyday life. These are changes you can make subtly, you don’t need to suddenly start sitting like a gorilla, just uncurl yourself, open yourself up, let your heart breathe!
If you have a scary meeting, interview, or just a party that you are nervous about, go into the loo and spend 2 minutes in the posture of a naturally dominant person (go crazy with this one, try loads of different ones – throw your arms in the air like you have just won a race, legs apart, head up) and it WILL change your (chemical) mind – quite literally.
In natural leaders it’s been found that they have lower cortisol (stress chemicals) levels, and higher testosterone (dominance chemicals) levels than your average person, so if you can encourage this in yourself those around you can’t fail to sense a difference.
There is nothing we cannot be, do, or have if we focus on the having of it not the lack of it .