Today at lunch, I watched an excellent TED talk about power posing. You can watch the whole thing here but the gist of the presentation was this: two minutes of standing in a powerful position will cause physical changes in your body that will actually make you feel more powerful and in control.
Amy Cuddy, a Professor and Researcher at Harvard tested this with real humans. She had them spit in a tube, do a power pose for two minutes, do some gambling and then spit in the tube again. There was an actual change in the subject’s testosterone and cortisol levels. Testosterone is the “dominance” hormone and cortisol is the “dealing with stress” hormone. In addition to the physical changes, the posers where more likely to gamble – that’s how sure they felt about themselves.
It’s not that I want to grow chest hair before an interview, but there is a pretty good chance I will feel more on top of my game and that will cause the interviewer view me as confident and positive.
So, when you arrive for your next meeting or interview, give yourself two minutes in a bathroom stall or in an empty hallway and try one of these poses.
I spoke to several of the strong business development people I know and they said that they always use tricks like this and feel more confident when they go into a pitch or a difficult meeting.
Be careful using this at home. It works on kids but go easy with your spouse.