NLP Training | Leadership Coaching | Speaking

How to use power poses to boost your success

Amy Cuddy Power Poses

Power poses: An amazing discovery

Last week I attended a talk with Amy Cuddy. I first discovered her on Ted, the famous platform for speakers. This is where I first learned about power poses . When I found out she was speaking in Perth, I couldn’t resist.
Amy is a fantastic speaker and I recommend you watch her Ted Talk and buy her book “Presence”. I will share some of the notes I have taken because it perfectly aligns with the things I have learned over the last two decades.
I often speak to people how mindset leads to behaviours and outcomes. Amy adds an extra layer, a new starting point. Another element that allows you to influence your success: your body and posture.

Being your authentic self

The core of Amy’s talk is about using power poses to be present so you can perform at your best. We often struggle to stay in the present moment because of dread, anxiety and regret. To stay in the present moment, you need composure, calm confidence and satisfaction. This is required if you want to stay attuned and express your authentic self. Being your authentic self is having alignment with your core being, or what I call your authentic self. The part of you that is not defined by your job, function or role. It is the composite of all your skills, talents and wisdom.
We aren’t authentic if we are lying. You words may tell a lie, but you body will tell the truth.

The art of being present

To be present is to believe in your story, to convey confidence without arrogance. The result is that you communicate harmoniously.
I want to stress Amy’s comment about confidence and arrogance. So often I hear people refer to others as arrogant. I am convinced that often people confuse confidence and arrogance. Confidence is a tool to get things done. Arrogance is a weapon to attack and intimidate others.

When you feel powerful

  • You have a sense of power. Feelings that are positive, powerful and that create opportunity. Your thoughts will be more creative and even your IQ goes up.
  • Your behaviour changes. You step forward, and become more assertive for yourself and others. Feeling powerful leads you to help others.
  • Your physiology changes. Your cortisol is lower, you live longer and your immunity improves.
Power is often a word with negative connotations. But Amy Cuddy is talking about power without taking away power from others. I like to add that those who are authentic, posses this power as they are aligned with the core of who they are.

Tracking the mind and body connection

Power reveals itself in your body. As does powerlessness. Body language communicates emotions. The mind and body are constantly conversing.That is how you can track the mind using the body connection.
Feeling powerless and shame go hand in hand. If you are powerless, you body says “fight, flee or fight.” Feeling powerless, blocks presence. When you feel powerless, your body contracts. You try to make yourself as small as possible. See what happens in the animal kingdom when one animal attacks another. Crossing your arms and your legs are all examples of making yourself small.
Power cultivates presence. Your body expands. And you see this in the animal kingdom too. The greatest example being a peacock.

Stop managing the impression you make on others. Start focusing on the impression you make on yourself.

Strengthen yourself, get ready and connect.

How can you start using using power poses to prepare for situations where you need to be confident? Job interviews, presentations, meetings and sales pitches are all situations that can benefit from power poses.
Hold the power poses for two minutes. They will give you confidence and they will make you feel powerful, confident and in charge. They result is that you will convey yourself with pride, presence and pose.
Stress shows in your body as slouching. After Amy’s talk I went to the gym and I noticed that between exercises I was slouching. Now I make a conscious effort to walk around holding a power pose.
Expanding yourself is about taking up space, expressing ideas and showing strength. If nothing else, it is about showing respect to yourself so you perform better.

How to use power poses to prepare yourself and create presence:

  1. Prepare with BIG Poses
  2. Present with good and open posture.
  3. Mind your posture throughout the day.
  4. Attend to the practice regularly.
And finally.
Fake it till you become it. Tiny tweaks become big changes.
Discover how your mindset leads to your behaviours and outcomes.To find out more, register for the authentic leadership audit and start making tiny changes  to create big impact.


+61 414 455 979   I  [email protected]

Connect with me