“Nonverbal [cues] govern how others think and feel about us – do they govern how we think and feel about ourselves?” ~ Amy Cuddy
In my most recent e-newsletter I talked about how to create it and become it – actively shaping your future self with today’s actions.
You may also recall how in the past I’ve shared how to create a vision for the future. In many ways, creating it to become it is the logical next step; you’ve decided what you want to become or do, and now you have to take the necessary steps to make it happen.
There’s a very physical aspect to creating it and becoming it that flows from the more intangible step of creating a vision for the future. Maybe for that reason, your ability to become the best version of yourself that you’re envisioning is heavily impacted by how you choose to carry and present your body.
The good news is, even when your mind feels out of control – when imposter syndrome, fear, or lack of confidence has your head a jumbled mess – you still have control over your body! And this means you have the power to control your reactions to become the confident, successful person you envision.
Here are a few tips for using your physical self to create and become the leader, thinker, or expert you desire to be.
- Create an awesome vision of yourself. Instead of allowing boundaries or limitations to define who you can and cannot be, create a clear, positive and detailed picture of your “ideal self” – inside and out. Painting a mental picture of a physical reality helps you identify what you really want and acts like a motivating magnet, energizing you to take action to make your vision a reality.
- Be bold in your body language. Increase your confidence with bold and expansive body language. Stand and sit up straight, maintain eye contact, and smile. Carry yourself in a way that conveys power, poise, and a healthy sense of pride. Project the best image of yourself to allow you to become your best self.
- Change your body, change your mind. Projecting confidence helps you feel more confident. Amy Cuddy says maintaining a “power pose” for two minutes will cause a decrease in the stress hormone cortisol and an increase in testosterone, a hormone related to confidence.
- Use physical cues to create a new reality. Your physical surroundings impact your state of mind. For example, being in nature and listening to happy music is proven to boost your mood. The old adage, “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have,” is shown to improve self-confidence and positively impact others’ perceptions of you.
- Reframe your body’s fear response. Fear is a common reaction when taking a growth leap. Next time you feel your fear threatening to keep you from becoming more, reframe your jitters as excitement. Did you know that the physical reactions of fear and excitement are actually the same? Your body doesn’t know the difference! Your mind interprets a physical response, which means you have the power to control your reaction. Let your body’s adrenaline response work for you instead of against you by focusing on positive thoughts, not negative ones.