Reading your body language. Why? Because it speaks volumes about your mood.
However, your body language is not only communicating with others. It is dictating your mood to you. It embodies your mood and decides how you can feel. Your posture expresses your mood…and vice versa. It simply is not true that you need your mood to change before you can feel differently. You can change your mood by shifting your body language. By consciously changing your posture, you can access different mood states and see different possibilities for action and interaction with others. Did you know your physical posture affects your mood, your health and how you experience your personal interactions?
Some statistics say that 99% of emotional communication is actually in your body language, tone of voice and facial expression.
Good posture can be deliberately chosen.
This is an awareness practice that takes no extra time out of your day. I saw the power of this firsthand when I taught a Mind Body Wellness training for a health insurance company. One of the exercises we did was to observe how our mood changed as we said the very same words while holding very different body postures.
Try This Body Language Experiment
You can experience this for yourself right now. One by one allow your body to assume the following moods. Really get into it. Let your muscles, facial expression and tone of voice mirror the emotion. Once you have embodied that emotion, say this same sentence for each mood, as if you are speaking to someone else (It is also very powerful to actually experience this exercise with others.)
"I'm supposed to go to the museum today."
How does your tone of voice, posture, facial expression and muscle tension change when you say: “I'm supposed to go to the museum today” for each of the following moods. (How would it affect you if you were hearing these people say it to you?)
Which felt the best?
Take notice how your posture changed and how your tone of voice changed. Notice how the same “benign” words actually convey a very different communication depending on which “body you are in”. How would the “receiver” of your words feel for each embodiment? Inspired? Threatened? Deflated? Annoyed? Agreeable?
When negotiating with others, you can choose which body language will be most helpful in any situation.
Remember: Most of our communication is non-verbal. What are you letting your posture dictate to you?
Become more conscious of how your body language is speaking to you.
You can consciously shift into good posture. It will not only shift your mood, it will help you experience situations and people differently. Stand more confidently, and you will access more confidence. Smile more and you will begin to notice more things to be happy about.
This is one of the practices I recommend under Strategy of the Spirit #8: Embody Thyself. For other Strategies of the Spirit that take no extra time out of your day consider Interrupt Thyselfor The Power of Music
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