I was watching an old episode of Grey’s Anatomy the other night, and in it one of the female surgeons tells another to adopt the ‘Wonder Woman’ pose. You know – stand tall, chest out, hands on hips, legs slightly apart. You do this for two minutes, and it increases your confidence, prior to performing slightly terrifying surgery.
I checked out the science, and apparently it stands up (sorry). Your testosterone goes up by 20%, and your cortisol (stress hormone) goes down by 25% on average. And ladies, you need your testosterone, just as much as men do. And gentlemen, you too can stand like Wonder Woman. Don’t be shy.
But since most men in our business don’t seem to lack the ability to talk on subjects about which they know f*** all, at great length, I’m addressing the ladies now.
You may not be about to undertake brain surgery, but standing up and presenting, or indeed any kind of public speaking – even just in a regular meeting – is highly stressful, and more so for women who have been brought up to be less assertive than men (see above).
I know this because many of the women I coach tell me this is the arena they fear most – the one men seem to own, but women are guests, and expected to behave like one.
Try it. Two minutes before you enter the room. Do the pose, and be the wonder woman you know you truly are.
PS I know the picture isn't Wonder Woman. Nor standing correctly. But what a cracking whip! (boom boom)