Self Confidence, Happiness, and Posture

Our use of body posture plays a key role in how we feel. When we are feeling "down", our bodies show this by hunching the shoulders, we stare at the floor, our heads hang forward. When we are seated we tend to be slumped rather than relaxed. Our walk is more of a shuffle, speech is slow and quiet.

Compare this to how we feel when on an "up". Shoulders back, eyes forward, head held high and so on.

Do the following exercise yourself and notice the difference between the two stances.

Firstly, stand up. Think of yourself as an actor who has been asked to portray a person who is feeling unhappy and sad. How would you stand? You would have all the physical positions as described above:-

Hunched shoulders,

staring at the floor,

head dropped forward,

arms hanging limply by your side,

back curved,

shallow breathing,

facial expression lifeless.

How do you feel? Awful, probably!

Now, change your position. The actor has now been asked to play someone that is full of confidence and happy. Again, how would you stand?

Shoulders back,

looking forward,

head held up,

arms forward as if offering a hug,

back straight,

deep breathing,

smiling face.

How do you feel now? That's different, eh!

Simply be altering the way we use our bodies automatically has the effect of changing the way we feel. Even if we have a genuine reason for feeling unhappy, we can reduce the impact on our emotions by standing, walking, sitting and talking in a more confident manner.

Another useful method for raising your self confidence and changing your mood is to smile.

Even just by putting a smile on to our face can be effective. Not only does it send a "happy" message to our brains, it also sends out a signal of confidence to others. This in turn will generate a more welcoming response from the people with whom you come into contact. We all respond at some level to a smile directed at us. It feels good to us and it feels good to the person sending it.

Notice the way you use your body posture and start practicing using it to improve the way you feel. Be aware of the times when you are not feeling the way you would like and how you are using your body. And, as you become more proficient at it, start enjoying the better feelings that it generates.

Allan Cowley is a Life Coach working on a one-to-one basis with clients throughout the world. He provides online life coaching via his website. You can contact him at">


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