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5 Power Poses Your Career Needs

Five years ago, someone might have looked at you funny if they caught you stand wide-legged with your arms in the air in the office. But today, many people get it: you’re power posing.

This phenomenon has become a bona fide strategy for boosting your testosterone and confidence, especially for women. Harvard psychologist Amy Cuddy gave a famous TED Talk outlining how this practice can change your life… and your career.

Ready to incorporate these poses into your daily life, but unsure where or how to start? Here's your cheat sheet to power posing though life.


The Wonder Woman

Plant your fleet hips-width apart, put your hands on your hips, push out your chest, and tilt your chin upward:
Wonder Woman


This pose conveys confidence and power, even if you’re feeling nervous: angling your chin upward is the opposite of touching your neck or ducking your head which are both signs of anxiety and submission. Use this pose when you’re talking to your boss or during presentations, and give yourself an extra boost of confidence.


The Performer

You have a big job interview. Your annual performance review is about to happen. You’re about to give a career-defining presentation. Quick: strike a pose! This power pose – named after Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones – involves putting both your hands over your head and standing with your feet wide apart.
mick jagger


Raising your arms above your head with an open stance boosts your testosterone levels, which gives you more energy and strength. This dominant stance can also give you more confidence, which most of us badly need before interviews.


The Obama

Cuddy named this power pose after the President because he often sat like this while in the oval office. The pose conveys dominance and confidence:

Using this pose won’t always make sense; it’s hard to type when you sit like this, and it could be seen as disrespectful or overly casual in a team meeting. But if you arrive for a meeting early or you’re at your desk alone, test this pose out!


The Loomer

Plant your hands on the table and lean forward. You will seem taller and more authoritative, particularly during presentations or pitches.
don draper2

Even when leaning forward, this pose still features an open stance that seems powerful and persuasive. According to Cuddy, she named this pose after Lyndon B. Johnson because he used his height (6’4”) very strategically during meetings to show he was engaged and in control.



“The CEO” pose is named after Oprah Winfrey because of the way she sits: leaning back, at ease, with her arms behind her head. The position isn’t a natural one, particularly for women, so it exudes confidence and dominance.

You can try a few variations of this pose – crossing your knees, resting your ankle on your knee – but the key is to relax back into your chair with your hands behind your head.