Instant Neuro-Tips to Increase Self-Esteem: Adopt a Power Pose
Did you know, when we walk or stand up adopting a pose that exudes confidence, we are more likely to feel and act more confident?
Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. According to social psychologist Amy Cuddy, “Power Posing — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can boost feelings of confidence, and might have an impact on our chances for success”
I experienced this personally, years ago. Before studying neuroscience and coming across this research, I was drawn into ballroom dancing- which can be seriously “addictive”. It has become my main hobby and leisure past-time for the past 19 years. Over the years, I noticed that certain dance positions had that effect on me: standing tall, owning an attitude of confidence while stretching my body would really boost my confidence.
Also, according to another study, “working in open and expansive postures can increase the subjective sense of being energetic, empowered and in control”. adopting expansive postures causes people to feel more powerful
(Example of expansive postures: certain yoga poses like the mountain pose: assuming high, erect, expansive positions)
This blog will hopefully inspire to find ways to hold (lift) you up and feel confident if / when your self-esteem has been deflated by deliberately adopting a “pose” of your choice:
Today I decided to open up my “Inner Tool Box” and share one of my favorite Instant Strategies (Hacks) to help you shift the state of the body/brain from a state of lack of confidence/ self-doubt/ insecurities to confidence. (It can also be used to shift from one of anxiety or tension to strength and calm)
How Can We Snap Out of a State We Are in And Shift/ Step into a Powerful State?
- A while ago, I decided to create a series of instant anchors (in my mind) to me build resilience and maintain emotional health. I call it my “Inner Tool Box”:
- I have built my mental tool box from scratch; it contains each one of my “inner strategies” or instant anchors that I have developed. These are mental constructs I have created to keep me centered and mentally and emotionally healthy. I use a lot of visualization and mental imagery – it is a very powerful experience. Then, I store them in my mental tool box, ready be used at the push of a mental button.
- I have trained myself to use this mental hack and adopt a power pose every time I become aware of feeling insecure or having self-doubt.
- Here is how I did it: I practiced my mental anchor while being in a safe environment over several days, while mindfully relaxed, using visualization and mental imagery. I set the intention to use this strategy the moment I become aware of feeling insecure: I said to myself that every time I have a feeling of self-doubt, I would snap out of it by using a power pose and shift to a state of confidence: I snap my fingers and take the “Snap Dance Stance”
- Then, I set the intention of using my power pose before entering a meeting that I anticipate to be challenging or in a conflicting situation that can evoke anxiety or just becoming aware of feeling of self doubt, for example.
It’s actually quite simple and it works!
I invite you to try any expansive pose or to create your own power posture.
(Let me know how it worked for you. You can respond to this email. I read every single email I receive)
- Take a couple of deep mindful yawns and engage in super-slow mini movements.
- Close your eyes and while being mindfully relaxed, imagine yourself adapting an expansive posture and feeling powerful and confident.
- Practice using your mental anchor in a safe environment first, and then-set the intention to activate your power pose when you are about and around in the world, as needed.
How to use power posing:
- Before going into any situation that might trigger feelings of anxiety or shame—a job interview, a business meeting, or a difficult meeting where you anticipate a confrontation, etc.
- Find a quiet, private, safe place where you can allow yourself to feel the anxiety or worry in your body that you want to shift.
- Then, get into the power pose: stand tall and erect, with the chest lifted and head held high-then hold your arms above your head (imitating the mountain pose of yoga)
- Allow yourself feel strength and energy in your body.
- Then you can move back and forth between the posture of anxiety or worry and the posture of the power pose for a few minutes. Release gradually the posture of worry and remain in the posture of power, confidence and strength.
- Walk mindfully to face your situation with more inner strength and energy.
Can also be used as a standing meditation; as a grounding tool to get centered.
Practice your power pose frequently to develop resilience and quickly tap into your inner resources.
To feeling fully confident,