Body language says a lot about a person. You can typically judge somebody’s mood by the body language they display, and the most immediate sign is posture.
When entering a room, you’ll instantly notice a difference between the individuals slumped at their desk and those who sit upright, with their back straight and head held high.
The individuals with poor posture appear less engaged, less confident, and ultimately disinterested.
Those sitting with good posture will appear confident, engaged and present in their surroundings. There’s something elegant about good posture.
We all want it, but it can be difficult to correct after years of bad habits.
Posture and physical health
Body posture doesn’t just make our appearance better.
Many studies have found that posture is linked to good physical health. This guide outlines the negative health effects of poor posture, including lower back pain, neck pain and headaches.
The Covid-19 pandemic has forced many employees to leave the office and set up remotely at home. Having lost those daily steps to and from work and spending the majority of the day sat staring at a computer screen, it’s taken a toll on our bodies. Anyone who works at a desk or had an injury can encounter the physical effects of joint pain or arthritis.
If you have a job where you are spending a lot of time performing repetitive motions like typing and remaining sedentary for extended periods, you are more susceptible to aggravating a pre-existing condition like arthritis.
Repetitive motion or repetitive stress working-related injuries can seriously affect your physical health, and also give you the right to file for workers’ compensation benefits.
Posture and mental health
Not only does bad posture relate to physical health problems, research suggests that having good posture can also benefit us mentally, working wonders for our mood, confidence and energy levels.
This change in body language can help us to lead more productive and more successful careers, as well as combining sitting, standing, and moving over the course of the workday.
According to PainScience, posture is linked to our emotional state, suggesting that our mood can have a significant impact on the way that we carry ourselves.
If we’re feeling low, we tend to slouch when standing or sitting and unintentionally hold our heads down. On the other hand, if we’re in a great mood and feeling happy, we will hold our heads up and walk more openly.
Our mood becomes visible to others in the way that we move our bodies.
Posture and confidence
The concept of ‘power posing’ was made popular by an episode of TED Talks in which Cuddy discussed her research into the effects of posture on mood.
She delivered the idea that supporting good posture, i.e. an open, expansive posture, makes us feel more powerful and confident. Alternatively, we both appear and feel powerless when holding a closed and contracted posture.
While further studies from other researchers found that the extent of this was not huge, the research did confirm that body posture impacts our mood.
Changes within our bodies have an impact on our mind, and vice versa. A more dominant pose will make us look and feel greater power, and ultimately, a greater sense of control over our lives.
Posture and energy levels
A 2012 study looking at the relationship between posture and depression found that body movement significantly affects energy levels.
After alternating posture between slouched to upright, the subjective energy level either increased or decreased. The study found a significant impact on the energy level of the participants, particularly those with higher rates of depression.
It makes sense that carrying yourself in a way that is more closed off, would make you feel more lethargic, just as it appears to those viewing us from the outside.
Finding balance in the body through correct posture can help performance. It will certainly improve the impression you give to your boss, colleagues and potential employers.
The research suggests that we assume power, confidence, and increased energy levels by correcting our posture, ultimately making us more productive and successful in our lives and careers. Plus, confidence is key when it comes to improving your career prospects.
You’ll not only look great, you’ll feel it too.