Excerpts taken from the book“The Triad Of Unbreakable Confidence”
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Several studies like the famous Smile Study published by the University of Berkeley have proven unequivocally that when you simply fake doing something that feels unnatural, but is good for you, it eventually becomes natural and results in positive outcomes.
According to the study, patients who were diagnosed as “clinically depressed” were instructed to sit in front of a three-way mirror and fake a smile from ear to ear for 4 weeks, 20 minutes per day. At the end of the study no one needed medication and not one patient could say that they were still depressed.
So what’s happening here? Basically, if you fake something long enough, the old neural connections, which made you fearful, will break off and die while new empowering memory associations will take over. Ultimately if you fake being more confident, you will become what you once thought you were faking, “more confident” and as a result attract more women.
Want more proof? Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist who teaches at Harvard Business School has proven scientifically how faking something as simple as power posing increases testosterone, lowers cortisol and makes you more confident.
If you’re unfamiliar with it, Power Posing is basically just making yourself bigger by physically taking up more space. Here are some examples of power posing:
- Hold your hands over your head like you just won the main event at the Olympics.
- Stand tall with your hands on your hips with elbows flaring out like Superman.
- Sit with your legs open and your hands interlaced behind your head, elbows flaring out.
All of these poses increase testosterone, lower cortisol and make you more confident. So what’s happening here? Similar to the animal kingdom where a snake or a bear will rise up and make itself larger to fend off a threat, we too can display these signs of confidence not only in dangerous situations but in situations where a potential mate needs to see that you are a confident and worthy mate.
Cuddy became interested in the study of how faking something can create successful results when she herself experienced a traumatic accident as a young lady and was thrown from a car, which resulted in brain damage. Previous to the accident, she had been called “a gifted child student” and completely lost her identity when her IQ dropped several points after the accident. After battling back she got into Princeton University on the recommendation of what she calls an “angel advisor,” but came to a crossroads when asked to give her first presentation to a small audience of 20 people.
Feeling as if she was an unworthy imposter and certain she would fail, Amy went to her advisor who took a chance on her and told her she was going to quit. Her advisor quipped back: “You are not quitting because I took a gamble on you and you’re staying. You’re gonna stay and this is what you’re going to do. You are gonna fake it, you’re gonna do every talk that you’re ever asked to do. You’re gonna do it, and do it, and do it even if you’re terrified and just paralyzed and having an out of body experience, until you have this moment when you say oh my gosh, I’m actually doing it, I have become this, I am actually doing this.”
Of course you can guess what happened next. Cuddy faked it until she became it and next thing we know she’s teaching at Harvard Business School, doing a Ted Talk now viewed by over 40 million people. Pretty inspiring right? Basically, her conclusions of her studies of faking something until you become it were this:
“Our bodies change our minds and our minds can change our behavior and our behavior changes our outcomes.”
She also discovered that faking power poses makes people more “assertive, confident and comfortable vs. those who did the opposite by shrinking and became highly reactive. Of course she also found with no surprise that the best leaders have high testosterone and low cortisol (low reaction to stress). Here is the video below:
Excerpts taken from the book “The Triad Of Unbreakable Confidence”