In 2012, Dr. Amy Cuddy (a Harvard psychologist) gave a TED Talk that suggested “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when you don’t feel confident — can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in your brain, and then have a real impact on your success.
“Certain power poses don’t just change how others perceive you,” Professor Cuddy says. “They can change your body chemistry, and these changes affect the way you do your job and interact with other people.”
That now-famous TED Talk has been viewed more than 32 million times and people all around the world have been practicing their “wonder woman” pose before entering a challenging or stressful situation.
But There’s More!
This is just one example of scientific research from the rapidly growing field of Positive Psychology. There’s much more where that came from!
In the fields of leadership and positive psychology, a remarkable amount of research has emerged over the past decade. In fact, over 10,000 new research papers have been written, providing countless new findings that can improve your leadership skills and impact your success.
But despite the explosion of research in positive psychology, its ground-breaking findings are still mostly a secret. Unless the results make their way into a popular TED Talk, surprisingly few people hear about the innovative discoveries that reveal how our brain works best and how we can best relate to each other.
The Key to Understanding What Moves People
In my 20-years’ experience as an educator, consultant, and leadership coach, I have found people almost universally open to learning how to use positive psychology to rethink the way they lead their teams. The key is not so much what you say; but how you say it.
Leaders today want to know how using a positive mindset can gain them a competitive edge, and how they can buffer themselves against the negativity that spreads so rapidly from one cubicle to another. In a world of increasing stress, they want to learn how to respond with a calm, confident, charisma that can keep their team inspired and energized.
It’s not about manipulation or politics; it’s about understanding what moves people. You have to connect with people before you can effectively lead them.
The Science of Excellence
Positive Psychology is not “happy-ology,” what you might think of as the power of positive thinking, a self-help movement, or a passing fad. It is the new science of excellence and it is rapidly growing.
It’s about learning how to cultivate the mindset and behaviors that have been empirically proven to fuel greater success and fulfillment.