Articles Published on 2017-05-09

First Impressions: The Psychology of Good Posture

Wondering if posture affects more than just your physical health?

Besides the fact that good posture is important for your body, it also says a lot about who you are as a person. Think about the first thing that comes to mind when you think about communication; chances are you are thinking of speaking or writing. Next to these two prominent channels of communication, much of it goes through body language and therefore you posture.

Boy with positive posture

Summary

  • Posture influences the way people see you and how you feel about yourself
  • When you are in a depressed position, you will feel more depressed as well
  • Good posture is linked with positive psychological and social effects

Your body’s posture says something about how you are standing in life. Try picturing your own body posture when standing and how it might come across. Staring at the ground, leaning your head forward and hanging shoulders will make you come across as gloomy. In contrast, walking up straight with your shoulders pulled backwards and chest pressed forward, is associated with optimism and confidence.

Experiments on the psychology of good posture

In an experiment, researchers found that people who have been positioned in a depressed physical posture, later appeared to develop helplessness more easily. People who were placed in an upright position were more persistent in completing their task and gave up less easily. Another thing they found was that people who were in a more depressed posture reported self-perceptions of greater stress than people who were in a relaxed position. So, not only does your posture influence the way how people think about you and how they see you; it also influences the way you feel and think about yourself.

Another study you might find interesting looked at the effects that words have on your posture. Words that were linked to disappointment or pride were presented to participants while their postural height was measured. The experiment showed that when participants generated words that were linked to disappointment, they decreased their posture height more than participants who generated words linked with pride.

Your posture makes an impression on other people

Many more experiments show that good posture is linked with positive effects on psychological health. It is important to note that your posture makes an important impression on the people you encounter on a daily basis. This is a good moment to evaluate your own posture and determine if that is how you would like to come across in everyday life. Good posture will help you make a good impression on others. Not only does it radiate confidence; it also makes you look physically fit and strong.

Not only does posture radiate confidence; it also makes you look physically fit and strong.

Do you want to share how your mood influences your posture or the other way around? Please leave a comment below or get in touch on twitter!

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