Monday, 15 October 2012

How Your Behaviour Can Change Your Mind

Posted by My Own Coach Ltd on 11:35 with 2 comments
Anyone who regularly reads this blog will recognise my interest in how people communicate, specifically the impact we have on others with our language patterns and non verbal behaviour.

I am fascinated by this whole topic, as most of it goes completely unnoticed in our day to day.

So, when I stumbled across this TED Talk from Amy Cuddy, I cleared the decks and settled down to watch uninterrupted for 20 minutes.

I wasn't disappointed!

We are all aware that our body language affects how others experience us, but it may also change how we regard ourselves in a very specific way.

In her talk, social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don't feel confident, can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and may even impact our chances for success in stressful situations.

Amy's research reveals that we can change other people’s perceptions, and even our own body chemistry, simply by changing body positions.

In short, “If you act powerfully, you will begin to think powerfully.


  1. I totally agree, I went for a photo shoot and the photographer put me in some very unnatural positions because they would come across well on the photo. After a while I noticed that I was feeling really good.

    The same is true at work, if I put on a jacket or high heels or sit in an upright chair rather than in a soft sofa, I hold myself differently and behave differently. I really feel powerful.

    At times it feels a bit like acting, something I consciously do when I'm speaking to a crowd from a stage, but something I don't consciously think about as often as I should in small group scenarios. At times, I almost make myself invisible and get angry when I'm not included, so the other day I tried an experiment - would I participate differently if I was on the phone rather than in the room? I found that I was much more able to say what I thought and I took more risks. Safe in my house, I was walking around the room waving my hands in the air and happy to interrupt others. I wonder now if the facts that:
    - I was unable to see others body language, and - I was to move as I felt comfortable, helped me to behave differently

  2. Hi Julie

    Thank you for your insights. I particularly like the question you pose at the end and suspect it is a bit of both.

    It certainly has me thinking, which has more effect on my state: the way I position myself or the way other people are positioned around me.

    One to explore in the coming weeks, I reckon!


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