“I had to stop watching the news. It was making my own problems seem insignificant.” –Cartoon I just saw in the New Yorker
It’s a long story, but many years ago I met Lynda Carter at Chris Evert’s wedding. So when Warner Bros. announced yesterday that Michelle MacLaren will be directing the new Wonder Woman movie, the first big budget superhero movie about a woman, I thought about Lynda (who will probably not be cast in the movie) and decided I would practice her superpowers this week. Here’s why:
Scientists have proven that when you stand like Wonder Woman (fists on waist and legs spread in what Harvard Business School professor Amy Cuddy calls a power pose) you lower your cortisol levels and boost your testosterone.
“So what?” you might be thinking. WHAT is that when your cortisol levels go down, you drastically lower your stress and when testosterone goes up, you feel more confident.
Cuddy discovered that standing in this pose for a mere two minutes helps folks ace job interviews, tests and other potentially stress-provoking events.
Which is why I plan to strike this pose throughout the holidays, whenever I’m tempted to get testy with relatives or to feel time pressure about the 14 dishes I’m attempting to maneuver into the oven at the same time.
I plan to slip into the bathroom (Superman used a phone booth, but, thanks to cell phones, they’re practically obsolete), strike my Wonder Woman pose and come out, if not in cape, a whole lot calmer and happier.
I’d like to thank Dirk Stroda for introducing me to Amy Cuddy’s fabulous TED talk. I just met Dirk and his beautiful wife Verena in the Okanagan Valley of Canada. Dirk, who is a coach to executives and Olympic athletes, also taught me how to procure free drugs—well, oxytocin which is the love drug and the only one I’m interested in stockpiling. It can be manufactured IN THE BODY without Walter White’s goggles and messy law enforcement problem.
The point is…our physiology (like I point out in the Boggie Woogie Experiment in E-Cubed) can help us get our mind back on the joy frequency.
Dirk and I gave a workshop together at Sparkling Hill Resort, an unbelievably cool health resort with eight different saunas and steam rooms (one of them even had the same ceiling as the Sistine Chapel) and more than 3 million Swarovski crystals. Do I have a cool job or what?
The last little tip I’d like to share for sailing through the holidays is to sing. Jay Pryor, another cool friend of mine, from one of my power posses, and his wife Jessica have started singing to their two young kids. Instead of demanding that they come to dinner or stop drawing on the Lazy-Boy, they simply break into an operatic aria that more effectively gets the point across.
And lastly, because I was tempted to join a protest after last night’s Grand Jury decision in Ferguson, I’d like to present yet another headline in the world I’m envisioning:
Police officers all over the world give up their guns and realize the best way to do their job is to shoot love, not fear
Pam Grout is the author of 17 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality and the just-released sequel, E-Cubed, 9 More Experiments that Prove Mirth, Magic and Merriment is your Full-time Gig.