During the current Covid 19 crisis there are more reasons than ever to look after your mental health, so I will be publishing a quick tip each day on how to reduce your stress levels and manage the day to day challenges we all face. 
 

Changing your body posture. 

It may seem overly simplistic, but simply changing your body posture can have dramatic effects on your stress levels. Noted psychologist, Amy Cuddy (pictured below) showed us that by changing our body posture we can alter the chemical balance within our body, lowering levels of Cortisol and raising levels of Testosterone. I would highly recommend reading her book (presence) or watching her TED talk, which is fascinating viewing. 
We can prove this for ourselves though. Try shuffling along, with head bowed and shoulders slumped - we automatically feel bad, and if you try to smile or laugh while adopting this position you will find it almost impossible to do. Likewise, if you walk around with head held high, a bounce in your step and arms swinging as if you are 5 years old - then it is very difficul to feel sad! 
 
If we want to feel more confident, by simply imitating the body language of someone who is confident, you will become more confident. In the same way, by lifting your head up and imitating the body posture of someone who is happy, you will feel a little happier. In my workshops, I sometimes get the participants to shuffle around with their heads bowed and shoulders slumped and try to smile and they find it very difficult to do. Then I get them to bounce around the room, swinging their arms as if they were 5 years old trying to feel sad - everyone is smiling and laughing, it is almost impossible not to. 
 
So, please do have a look at Amy's TED talk, it is truly enlightening and try changing your posture and see what effect it has on your mood. 
 
More quick tips tomorrow 
 
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