Stress. We all have it.
It comes in many forms and as per the American Psychological Association, there are primarily 3 types which affect us:
- Acute Stress
- Episodic Stress
- Chronic Stress
Acute Stress is the most common stress that affects us day in, day out. As defined by the APA, acute stress “comes from demands and pressures of the recent past and anticipated demands and pressures of the near future“. Those that suffer episodic stress, “are those who suffer acute stress frequently, whose lives are so disordered that they are studies in chaos and crisis. They're always in a rush, but always late. If something can go wrong, it does. They take on too much, have too many irons in the fire, and can't organize the slew of self-inflicted demands and pressures clamoring for their attention. They seem perpetually in the clutches of acute stress.” Lastly, chronic stress is “the grinding stress that wears people away day after day, year after year. Chronic stress destroys bodies, minds and lives. It wreaks havoc through long-term attrition. It's the stress of poverty, of dysfunctional families, of being trapped in an unhappy marriage or in a despised job or career.”
Our bodies change our minds… and our minds change our behavior… and our behavior changes our outcomes. ~ Dr. Amy Cuddy
Dr. Amy Cuddy's TedX video addresses body language and a few of the psychological as well as biological benefits of body positions as it affects certain stresses. I put her theories in action and tested it out with the help of a few of my little assistants. The short and long of it, there's some merit to the positive impact “power poses” can have on our bodies and minds.
Here's 4 reasons to strike a bad-a$$ power pose (as if you needed more than 1):
- Reduced cortisol (stress hormone)
- Increased testosterone (this is good!)
- Overall increase in sense of well-being (after you get past the awkward 2 minutes of just standing there in a “power” pose)
- A smile from ear to ear from which you feel an increased self-confidence and improved self-image
[toggle title=”About the video” state=”close” ]Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our chances for success. Amy Cuddy’s research on body language reveals that we can change other people’s perceptions — and even our own body chemistry — simply by changing body positions[/toggle]