Amy Cuddy On Power Poses
Christopher Philip

Amy Cuddy elaborates on how to boost your confidence through simple body language. When we think of effective leaders we assume it’s all about charisma and that is either possessed or lacking – something we are born with. While it’s true that powerful people tend to have higher testosterone and lower cortisol which help people take risks and seek reward, these natural chemicals are not fixed throughout time. By doing simple “power poses” throughout the day, we can boost the release of positive hormones while simultaneously decreasing the stress hormone cortisol. When we feel confident our testosterone increases, and when we feel powerless, our testosterone decreases.

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Cuddy advises that the power poses be done in private. Find a safe place to spread the body out and stretch. A bathroom for example, can be a pinch location before a pivotal presentation or job interview. She cautions that dominant postures should be toned down in public so you don’t appear to be trying to dominant others. You want to appear like you are a leader, but not a burden to others. She says that people should hold their chins high spread the hands across another chair as a few go-to examples.

Lastly, she says that people should make it a habit. Other people seek leadership on an ongoing basis. She says people need to avoid hunching over their laptops or cell phones texting. Keep the head up and alert for a good part of the day. Taking up more space will give you the edge needed to become the leader you wish to become.

Amy Cuddy, assistant professor at Harvard Business School, describes a simple way to raise confidence and reduce stress.

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