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LifeInc.Today.com, Published October 08 2012

Hot topic: Proper body language an equalizer for women, Harvard professor says

Want to be more successful in your next business meeting?

Try striking a “power pose,” by standing tall and straight with an open posture. And whatever you do don’t hunch over and make yourself “tiny,” says Amy Cuddy, an associate professor at Harvard Business School.

Body language is especially important for women, who can easily be overshadowed in meetings by men, who naturally take up more space.

But Cuddy, who has done years of research on the topic, says both men and women can use body language to actually raise their testosterone levels and lower the levels of the anxiety-producing hormone cortisol.

Cuddy’s views on the subject have gone viral after she told her own moving story before a packed audience at a TED conference earlier this year.

The speech became a “moment” at the conference when Cuddy became overcome by emotion in describing her own experience counseling a young woman who thought she “did not belong” in business school.

“Stay and fake it, you’re going to make yourself powerful. And you know you’re gonna … ,” Cuddy said, suddenly pausing and stopping, tears welling in her eyes. A supportive audience coaxed her on with extended applause and she regained her poise. “And you’re going to go into the classroom, and you are going to give the best comment ever.”

The student overcame her doubts and became a success “because she had not just faked it until she made it. She faked it until she became it.”