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To Nab That Job, Check Your Posture
Date:1/14/2011

By Ellin Holohan
HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- If you really want that job, watch your posture.

How you stand and sit may affect how you feel about yourself -- and in turn, how well you'll perform in an interview during these tough economic times, according to a new study.

Researchers at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in Illinois found that undergraduates who were posed in "expansive" positions -- arms extended and one leg casually crossed over the knee -- scored higher on variables measuring their sense of power, abstract thinking and willingness to take action than their peers posed in "constricted" positions, with hands under their thighs, dropped shoulders, and feet scrunched together.

In three different experiments, the research team showed that expansive physical posture -- specifically, positions that open up the body and take up space -- can trigger a person's sense of power more than his or her role or hierarchical position, such as being the boss.

"Previous research has shown basically that there are many ways we can increase our sense of power," said study co-author Li Huang, a doctoral candidate at the school.

"Basically we found that posture is the factor that determines whether or not someone will take action," said Huang. "Role did not predict it."

Willingness to act and the ability to think abstractly are established criteria in research for measuring power, according to the study, published in the January issue of Psychological Science.

Each experiment involved between 57 and 77 participants and included men and women. For the most part, the results were similar for both sexes, said Huang.

Study subjects were randomly assigned the role of employee or boss prior to participating in various activities. They were told they would either give directions, in the case of the boss, or follow directions, in th
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