Power Pose: Convince Your Mind


Wonder Woman! No doubt she gets the job done. She is sure of herself. She knows she has the power to do good. She will be heard.

Imagine the same woman, crumpled in a chair, drooping toward the floor and holding onto herself, gaze downward. Even with a groovy outfit, that body language screams: “I doubt myself! I’m not really here. Don’t look at me.” Of utmost importance is that her brain believes the feedback the body is sending it. Even an intellect that knows an answer, has solutions and proposals aplenty, even a strong and fit body will balk and hesitate if the body language feedback is negative. She who hesitates is lost! She who wants to be invisible or feels invisible can easily convince others that she does not count, perhaps barely exists.

And, yes, this phenomenon is not limited by gender. Men may get into self-defeating postures as well. If Superman really didn’t want others to know his secret identity, then Clark Kent would slump and droop and stumble.

Contemporary social scientists posit that we can create a better feedback loop. We can teach our bodies to convince our brains that everything is O.K., that we are worthy and we can take positive action even under stress. In the vernacular, “Fake it ’til we make it!” Check out this TED Talk by Amy Cuddy for details.

Even Ursula knew it! Villain or not, she knew about power!