How our body language changes our brain

LOGO SMThis amazing talk, given by Amy Cuddy, Social Psychologist, explains how spending just two minutes in a particular pose can tangibly affect how we feel. For good or bad.  Throughout the animal kingdom, power and dominance is shown by taking up space, making yourself appear bigger, taller, stronger. Birds puff out their chest or spread their feathers. Think peacock! Cats raise the hairs on the ridge of their backs.  Puffer fish, puff up.  Cobras expand the hood behind their head. Gorillas wave their arms and beat their chests.

Humans too use body language, sometimes for dominance, sometimes submissively. What transpires is that not only do our non-verbal expressions govern what others think and feel about us, but also what we think and feel about ourselves. A series of experiments run by Amy Cuddy found that spending as little as two minutes in a ‘power pose’ (whether high power or low power) caused physiological changes in the brain. Where a high ‘power pose’ was adopted, the male hormone testosterone increased and the stress hormone cortisol reduced. Where a low ‘power pose’ was adopted, testosterone decreased and cortisol increased.  In short, our body language changes the chemistry within our bodies. Our body language can configure our brain to be assertive, confident and comfortable or to be stress-reactive.

The practice of hypnotherapy is predicated on the mind (thoughts) being able to bring about changes in behaviour. This research widens that notion by stating our body language can change our minds, our minds change our behavious and our behaviours change our outcomes.

Want better outcomes in life? Then invest twenty minutes of your time and learn more here.

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