Have you ever watched people and thought to yourself that some people were happy or sad just by how they were sitting or walking? It is as if our posture and mood reflect each other. This phenomenon has now gained scientific proof! A study has found that improving your posture while walking or relaxing can improve your mood, increase confidence and reduce back pain. Erik Pepper from San Francisco State University found that when we stand up straight, or sit upright, we are more likely to have positive thoughts. In 2004, Pepper and Wilson showed that in subjects sitting “collapsed”, looking downwards resulted in more feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, powerlessness and increased negative memories compared to subjects sitting upright. Pepper attributes this finding to the mind-body connection, our bodies affect our minds and our minds affect our bodies. And so it follows that to improve your mood you could alter your posture by standing or sitting with your head up, shoulders back and down (without forcing). Try this for yourself when you’re feeling low or want an extra confidence boost before that meeting.