body talk 5

wonder woman

I recently learned of an interesting study by Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist known for her research in nonverbal behavior.  (Click her name to see a video. I know, I know, it’s 20 minutes long, but if you’re currently looking for a job or speaking publicly or suffering from vague and general feelings of powerlessness and lethargy, it’s worth it.)

“We are intensely interested in what others’ bodies are telling us and what we’re telling others but we tend to forget the other audience that’s influenced by our nonverbals, and that’s ourselves: We are also influenced by our own nonverbals.”

“We know that our minds change our bodies, but is it also true that out bodies change our minds?” (Her answer is yes.)

“Can you fake it till you make it?” (Yes you can!)  In Cuddy’s study, one group of participants was instructed to perform a series of powerful movements while another group posed submissively. Then, both groups were interviewed for a job. It only took two minutes of posturing to effect a significant result.

Before I go to my next job interview, I’ll spend two minutes doing the Wonder Woman. Actually, now that I think of it, it couldn’t hurt to do this every day, while I’m brushing my teeth.


To read more about my obsession with this topic, follow these links:
Body Talk 1
Body Talk 2
Body Talk 3
Body Talk 4
Written All Over Your Face
20 Random Things About Me
An Aha Waaaah Moment
Naked Women

About Anna Fonté

Girl in the Hat, aka Anna Fonté, is an author who writes about invisibility, outsider status, everyday monsters, and her attempts to befriend the neighborhood crows. The things she writes want you to look at them.


  1. macdougalstreetbaby

    “Doing the Wonder Woman.” I do that. Well, not the part where she twirls around and around and magically transforms into herself but definitely the part where she fends off bullets with her bracelets.

    Going to check out the video now.

  2. Walking the walk. Makes sense to me.

    • I guess linguistically it’s a cliche, but I’m glad to know that it really, really works. (I wonder what happens if you do a sexy pose for 2 minutes? Or what if you pose like Rodin’s Thinker? Hmmm….)

  3. I totally agree. Except, and pardon my complete ignorance but its been a loooooonng time since I’ve seen her, but what is the Wonder Woman?

  4. Fascinating. I wonder if there’s any correlation to the increased blood flow and stimulation created by the more powerful movements. Kinda like the work-out-high that some people experience? Unfortunately, not I.

  5. Oh! I need to watch this – love your body talk series! Let’s go be Wonder Women, shall we? 🙂

  6. Glad you pointed this post out. I was looking in personal essays and didn’t see it.

    I didn’t watch the video, but I believe posture has a lot to do with things. After flying one trip I decided that airplane seats are designed to keep people quiet and submissive. They are a slight C curve, sitting in one my spine takes that shape and my head even lowers. That is not a posture of power. That is a sit-there-and-be-quiet-so-we-can-have-a-nice-flight posture.

    Standing/sitting up straight and looking OUT at the world is much more powerful.

    So how did your interview turn out after your Wonder Woman posturing?

    • Exactly! And when you can’t sit there any longer and try to find a place to stand, they shoo you back into your little box asap. I swear, I suffer ptsd from a Delta flight several years ago and I haven’t quite recovered yet. (I think the interview went well but I was the first of many interviews scheduled. They said they’d get back w/i 2 weeks. Fingers crossed.)

  7. Pingback: The Power to Change (Part 1) | Alarna Rose Gray

  8. i had wonder woman underoos when I was 4. Also, yes. it’s all connected. Bad assery comes first from the mind.

  9. Pingback: The Power to Change (Part 2) | Alarna Rose Gray

talk to me

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: