Strike a high-power pose for a jolt of confidence
Time it takes: 2 minutes
Body language may be a lot more important than you imagined. It affects not just how you’re perceived by others, but also your internal body chemistry.
That’s right, holding your body in a certain position literally changes the way you are.
Amy Cuddy, a professor at the Harvard School of Business, gave a TED Talk in 2012 on the significance of body language. Her premise is that non-verbal communication (i.e. body language) may be just as important as verbal communication. And one of the ways that you can communicate non-verbally is with a “power pose.”
Tell yourself that you’re going to have a fresh start
Time it takes: 3-5 minutes
Have you ever wondered why everybody chooses January 1 to make commitments?
Yes, it’s a new year. But it’s also an arbitrary point in the lives of most people. January 1 may be a good date to set new commitments, but it’s not much better than July 28.
Here’s the thing: You can give yourself a fresh start anytime. By doing so, you’re going to have a burst of energy. That’s one of the findings from a study by the Wharton School of Business.
The researchers found that these “intertemporal markers” encourage us in two ways: by making people disconnect from past failures, and by promoting a big-picture view of life.
These factors make us more motivated to sequester away our failures and get things done.
So think of a recent event, be it a promotion, a breakup, some other special occasion, and contrive a fresh start. You’ll find it more believable than you think.
Eat some chocolate – or some other dopamine-releasing reward
Time it takes: 1 minute
Here’s another low-tech hack to increase your level of motivation: Eat some chocolate. Not only is it delicious and easily available—the effects of chocolate on the brain are well-studied.
Here are some of the things that happen when you eat some:
It increases both serotonin, a neurotransmitter that promotes calm, and also phenylethylamine, which promotes stimulation. White chocolate does both even more intensely.It triggers a release of dopamine, which will elevate your heart rate and significantly increase motivation.It also results in a mild antidepressant effect, literally because your brain responds to the stimulants by promoting blissful emotions.