I don’t know why, but I’ve always been fascinated with body language. Like me, I’m sure you’ve all heard about the messages that we subconsciously send with nonverbal communication, like…
- Crossed Arms – “defensiveness or resistance to ideas.” I’ve seen this in gatherings of all sorts - business meetings, family dinners, parties – pretty much everywhere.
- Not Looking Someone in the Eyes – “you’re lying.” This is a classic with kids, or someone selling a “previously owned” vehicle.
Of course, these things may have that meaning, they are not absolute truths. Crossed arms might be a sign of feeling chilly, and avoiding eye contact might be a sign of shyness or insecurity.
It has made me paranoid sometimes though. I wring my hands together a lot - because they are cold (even when it’s hot and I’m sweating - it’s quite annoying). Wringing hands is a typical nonverbal sign of being nervous or anxious. So, when I notice people looking at me when I’m doing this, I feel I must tell them about my cold hands so they don’t think I’m nervous or anxious.
Hmmm - that sounds like a self-fulfilling prophecy – I’m anxious they think I might be anxious! A great segue….
Recently I saw an article in thepowerofideas.ideapod.com about nonverbal communication that really caught my eye. For so long, the common thread of the studies around body language has been on the impact that these signals have on others.
The science has really progressed, with studies evolving to show how our nonverbal communication affects how we think and feel about ourselves.
Amy Cuddy is a Harvard psychologist who presented a brilliant TED talk in 2012. She also is the author of “Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges,” a book about how we can use our body to make powerful changes on our thoughts and emotions.
A study she recently shared shows that how we start our day – from the moment of awakening – can totally shape the rest of the day. While mornings can be tough, she says they can be better if you stay mindful of one behavior.
So, regardless of your morning ritual, if you even have one (and no, I’m not talking about mindlessly grumbling and shuffling toward the coffee pot), read on - you may want to try this…
Before you even put one foot on the floor, stretch your body as wide as possible.
Most of us believe that our emotions come first and then our body reacts. While this may be true, the opposite can also occur: Your body posture can also influence your emotions.
In other words, you can feel more powerful simply by striking a power pose.
In her work, she found preliminary evidence that people who wake up outstretched are “super happy, like annoyingly happy,” yet those who wake up after sleeping in a fetal ball are more stressed out.
So, the solution is to rewire your brain and change that from stressed-out to confident and happy by striking a different pose. Regardless of the position you find yourself waking up in, change it with a full stretch - arms up and out in a V-shape and toes pointed.
And she’s not alone. Many researchers and physiologists agree, saying that stretching your body when you wake up offers several benefits, including muscle and joint flexibility, improved circulation and stress relief.
I've added this to my morning routing, and I say take it up a notch – I’m going to add the “Wonder Woman” pose the moment I step out of bed! Check it out HERE
Wishing you super powers!
P.S. The road to health is a journey, not a destination. Wonder Woman poses help, but likely won’t leave you with all the energy you want to achieve your life’s dreams. Let’s have a conversation to see if working together will give you the solutions you need for healthier, happier you. I offer a complimentary session and scheduling is simple with my online booking system: Schedule Now
Also, if you’re in the Cincinnati area and want to learn more about the 90-Day Lifestyle Transformation Program, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.