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What Is the Power Pose?

A Power Pose to Calm You Down

If your holiday schedule is so hectic that you need a break, all it takes is a little change in how you stand to feel an instantaneous stress release. Keep the power pose in your back pocket the next time you're feeling overwhelmed.

What is the power pose? It's a simple posture tweak that proponent Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist and professor at Harvard Law School, says helps you instantly gain confidence, reduce anxiety, and better your mood. In fact, Amy found in her research that simply changing posture led to a 25 percent decrease in the stress hormone cortisol in her volunteers. And it's simple to do: just stand with your shoulders straight and back, arms by your side or hands on hips, and feet turned out. Think: strong, confident Wonder Woman. The idea is to make yourself feel as "big" as possible for two minutes, Amy says — that's all you need to change your mood and get back on the holiday cheer bandwagon.

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