TED Talks

January 16, 2013


Networkers, Take the Wonder Woman Stance

Recently, I’ve become aware of TED Talks, a global set of conferences intended to share “ideas worth spreading.” Speakers are invited to address a wide range of topics, often involving the nexus of culture and science. The conference limits presentations to 18 minutes. If you are addicted to non-stop learning, YouTube allows you to mainline on some of the latest and greatest thoughts now being thunk.

This past weekend, I came across a “talk” delivered by social psychologist Ann Cuddy. She believes we can change others’ perceptions about us AND the way we feel about ourselves simply by spending two minutes in what I’ll call the “Wonder Woman pose.” Place your hands on your hips, let your elbows stick out, and slightly lift your chin. In other words, make yourself expansive.

Cuddy and fellow researcher Dana Carney have developed solid science that shows adopting the body language long associated with dominance for a mere 120 seconds is sufficient to create a 20% increase in testosterone and a 25% decrease in the stress hormone cortisol. In other words, if you look powerful before long you feel powerful.

It’s an idea worth keeping in mind before you head into any sort of business event that involves a social component. And don’t they all. Preparing for an upcoming interview? About to make a major presentation? Heading to a cocktail party or reception? First, find a private spot and spend a mere two minutes standing like a super hero. As Cuddy recommends, “Fake it ‘til you make it.” 

What Do You Need to Know?

How you stand can affect your confidence. Before your next interview or networing event, take the Wonder Woman stance. You'll feel more confident.



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