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  • Writer's pictureLori VanderBilt

Is it true that how I hold my body affects how I'm perceived by others AND my internal confidenc

The short answer is yes. Amy Cuddy shares the research in her TED talk called, “Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are.” In it, she talks about how our non-verbals affect not only how others think about us, but how we think about ourselves. How we hold our bodies reflects whether we feel powerful or powerless.

But even without watching Amy Cuddy, try this experiment. Notice how you hold your body in different contexts. Do you generally put your feet up on the desk in your office and take up a lot of space? Or do you collapse your body, making it smaller, perhaps putting one hand on your chin and holding the elbow of that hand with the other one? When do you feel most comfortable taking up more space? When do you feel like you need to hide out? When and where are you most comfortable in your body?

Amy shares her wisdom on power poses. If we stand like Wonder Woman, or take the victory pose with our hands in a “V” in the air and do either one for 2 minutes before we head into a stressful situation, we can help our brains to cope better, raising testosterone, the dominance hormone, and lowering cortisol, the stress hormone.

Watch her talk. Try her power poses, and let me know how it goes. I’m a big proponent of body wisdom, incorporating it into my coaching practice, and I’d love to hear what you discover. One colleague recently told me I have the gift of “somatic intuition and insight.” That’s cool. But it’s even better if you can have it too.

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