Behind many a #bosslady, there’s a power pose that assists her badass workplace mojo. Whether that means standing tall or sitting up straight, the notion of an authoritative stance has been praised as the ultimate confidence booster since a 2010 study called the method effective. But since then, new studies (11, to be exact) claim the origin research was flawed, reports Time.
In the original study, the participant size was fairly small, at only 42. And when researchers couldn’t reach similar results using larger sample groups, they concluded the first big breakthrough wasn’t so much of a breakthrough after all—despite Amy Cuddy’s TED Talk in support of the stance, which has been viewed an astounding 43 million times.
But, just because power poses might not be the scientific answer to your workplace woes doesn’t mean there aren’t other ways to amp up your confidence levels.
“Just as a smile still signals to others that a person feels good or is happy, certain nonverbal displays signal confidence and the possibility that one is higher within a given hierarchy.”
A specific pose might just be the tip of the iceberg when it comes nonverbal ways to boost your confidence. “Just as a smile still signals to others that a person feels good or is happy, certain nonverbal displays signal confidence and the possibility that one is higher within a given hierarchy,” Dana Carney, PhD, told Time. So consider speaking up, keeping eye contact, and sometimes initiating touch, which can lead to more respect from others (which supplies a whole other major dose of confidence).
And, while practice may not actually make perfect, it definitely improves your competence in any given sphere. To boost your competence, take it upon yourself to learn more about the subject in which you want to be confident.
“There’s something great about feeling powerful and confident—but it works only when that sense comes from something real.”
“There’s something great about feeling powerful and confident,” Joseph Cesario, PhD, told Time. “But it works only when that sense comes from something real. If you’re lacking competence, the best thing you can do is develop it.”
If you already have a strategy that works for you, stick with it (even Lena Dunham has a power pose she swears by!). But if you’re looking for something more scientific, know your stuff and act like you know it. When you’re talking the talk and walking the walk, you’ll feel more confident than ever.