Strike a Pose

Can your body language affect your career success?  According to Amy Cuddy from Harvard University, it absolutely can. “Harvard Business School’s Amy Cuddy and Columbia’s Dana Carney recently published research about the effects of body posture. They found that by holding oneself in a “power pose” for as little as two minutes makes people feel measurably more powerful and willing to take risks.” – Business Insider.

Power Posing suggests that by physically altering your stance you convey a powerful message that has both psychological and physiological effects.  Learn more about this ground-breaking body language research, and discover how you can adapt these poses into your day to day life.  Discover our top 6 reasons you should “Strike a Pose” today:

1.  Call of the Wild

Observed in the animal kingdom, power poses are a key way that animals establish who’s boss.  “Humans and other animals display power and dominance through expansive non- verbal displays, and these power poses are deeply intertwined with the evolutionary selection of what is ‘alpha’ …In humans and other animals, testosterone levels both reflect and reinforce dispositional and situational status and dominance; internal and external cues cause testosterone to rise, increasing dominant behaviors, and these behaviors can elevate testosterone even further.” – Power Posing:  Brief Nonverbal Displays Affect Neuroendocrine Levels and Risk Tolerance.

Additionally, we are not subconsciously assuming these positions or learning these poses from others.  Even recognized in people who are blind“Research shows that even people born blind raise their arms in a V shape and lift their chins slightly when they win a physical competition.” – Entreprenur.com.

So what does this all mean?  Power poses are engrained in our body language, and when we assume these positions we send ourselves and the world around us a message without speaking a word.  “Our research shows that people can change their own hormone levels and behaviors, by ‘faking it’ — by ‘power posing,’ or adopting expansive, open nonverbal postures that are strongly associated with power and dominance across the animal kingdom.” – Harvard Business Review.   We often hear “Dress for the Job You Want” but in the future could this change to “Pose for the Job You Want?”

2.  Two Minutes is All it Takes

So how do you start?  You don’t need to start vogue-ing all over the office to achieve your desired message.  Simply practicing power poses for 2 minutes once a day has been proven to physically alter your body, which subsequently leads to psychological shift in self-awareness along with a boost of testosterone.  “Thus, a simple 2-min power-pose manipulation was enough to significantly alter the physiological, mental, and feeling states of our participants. The implications of these results for everyday life are substantial.” – Power Posing:  Brief Nonverbal Displays Affect Neuroendocrine Levels and Risk Tolerance.

By positioning yourself in a large, expansive manner and expressing nonverbal cues suggesting dominance, you not only are convincing others of your confidence, but yourself on a physiological level as demonstrated below:

 

3.  Increase Confidence

High testosterone, and low cortisol are the ingredients for the perfect amount of confidence and self-assuredness.  “Merely practicing a “power pose” for a few minutes in private—such as standing tall and leaning slightly forward with hands at one’s side, or leaning forward over a desk with hands planted firmly on its surface—led to higher levels of testosterone and lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol in study participants. These physiological changes are linked to better performance and more confident, assertive behavior, recent studies show.” – Wall Street Journal. 

Taking these results a step further: “After participants assumed the poses, they were given a stressful five-minute job interview. Trained evaluators who had no idea of the study’s hypothesis — and had not seen the participants posing — graded the interviews, and gave higher marks to the performances of those who had adopted high-power poses.   Cuddy’s conclusion? Yes, powerful body language can boost confidence.” –  Princeton Alumni Weekly.  Additionally, not only were participants scored higher in an interview process, they also were more likely to take risks in a subsequent test.

4.  Send Signals

So what are the power poses, and how can you assume them during your day?  The overall goal is begin to incorporate them into your daily routine to help achieve the confidence and success you desire.   “Your behaviors and emotions are firmly tied. The most powerful leaders don’t merely think a certain way, they carry themselves a certain way.” – How to Be Confident and Reduce Stress in 2 Minutes Per Day.  See below for the four poses also explained in Inc. Magazine:

 

5.  Sit or Stand for Success

Want to become a Performer, a Wonder Woman (or Man) or a Loomer?  KI’s variety of sit/stand options can have you standing and building your confidence in no time.

 

Want to lean back in your chair like a CEO?  KI has a broad variety of ergonomic options, such as the Grazie Collection featuring the Perfect Pivot – ideal for supporting your body as you send silent signals to your teammates.

 

 

6.  Share the Science

“Our bodies change our minds and our minds change our behavior. Our behavior changes our outcomes.”  Click below to view Amy Cuddy’s original presentation at TED (Empowering through Body Language – Top Tips on Essential Assertiveness) and as she says: Share the Science.  So which pose will you do today?