Need a confidence boost? Social psychologist Amy Cuddy’s research shows that striking a power pose can change how others see us and how we see ourselves. We asked four women to try it out.
Strike a power pose
Why? Research shows that power poses actually lower the stress hormone cortisol and increase the confidence hormone testosterone.
Our ladies react:
Marcy: I loved striking a power pose. I chose the sun salutation, because it’s a strong greeting for the sun — a way to start the day — and though I may not look like it, I love yoga. I practice regularly. This challenge means something to me because I want to encourage all women to worship the temple they live in and to show them that anyone can practice yoga. Yoga isn’t just for skinny girls. Strike your own power pose and see how great it feels.
Raina: Striking a power pose seemed like a funny idea to me, but as I stood in my Superman stance, with my coworker behind the camera in my office, it became less funny and more motivating. I started to feel stronger and more confident, like I could take on the world. It is intriguing how powerful body language can be. I would definitely recommend this exercise to others. It made me rethink how I might leverage body language in situations that normally intimidate me. It was like taking a confidence boost in pill form, if that were possible.
Kerry: I spend hours in front my office computer, typing away and reading. Still, there are moments when I need to transition to meet with various executives or peers and bring my energy and ideas to the table. This week, rather than spending those precious spare transition minutes on my phone, I opted to strike a “power pose.” Feet up. Open shoulders. No slouching. Two minutes. As I headed off to my meeting, I have to admit I felt recharged, more upright and ready to bring my “A-game” to the team. Note to self: I must “power pose” more often.
Roaen: When you strike a pose, it’s typically a temporary state — like posing for a photo. I didn’t realize it was possible to think of striking a pose as changing your outlook or behavior, but it really is. After learning how a power pose can actually help you feel more powerful, I’ve been putting it into practice. Feeling stuck on something at work? Power pose and bam — the juices are flowing. Feeling tired? Stretch out (a power pose), and bam — instant energy. I’m so glad to have learned this little life hack.
Our Everyday Inspiration series wants to inspire you with small ways to improve your life. We’ve asked 20 women to take on a variety of small challenges and share their results. See all of our Everyday Inspiration challenges here, and meet the women here.