During the last few months, we’ve seen some healthcare teams really pull together during this crisis. They put aside their grudges, differences,
POWER POSTURE TO PROTECT YOU FROM NURSE BULLYING
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Don’t move! As you’re reading this, pay attention to your posture. Where are your shoulders? Are they down and back or are they up by your ears and forward? What about your back? Are you hunched a bit or are you allowing for the natural curves of your cervical, thoracic, lumbar and sacral spines? What about your head? Is you chin up and head back or is your chin down and head forward?
Chances are if you’re like most humans, your posture may put you at risk for becoming the target of nurse bullying.
Why does posture matter?
If you study the science behind body language, you will notice that certain postures and non-verbal behaviors communicate messages to others. For example, if you cross your arms over your chest, this may indicate disagreement or defensiveness (or you just might be cold!); avoiding eye contact and curving your shoulders inward may indicate shyness and lack of confidence; turning your body away from someone may indicate lack of interest, etc.
Nurses who find themselves targets of nurse bullying can use body language science like a shield against the bullies.
When bullies are selecting their targets, they look for someone who appears to lack confidence; who “looks” shy based on their body language. Why? Because bullies think they’ll make easy targets – that they won’t challenge them. Bullies therefore, look for nurses who display the victim’s stance:
Victim stance (THE EEYORE STANCE)
chin down and shoulders down, eyes averted, hold arms close against body, small hesitant steps.
Knowing this, you can start paying attention to YOUR body language and choose a posture that communicates a message of “don’t mess with me. I’m not an easy target!!” If you are concerned about becoming a target or are currently being tortured by a bully, start displaying the power stance:
Power stance (the wonder woman stance)
chin up, eyes looking straight ahead, arms and shoulders open, full determined steps.
Using the power stance sends a message to others that you are confident, sure of yourself and NOT an easy target. Using the power stance can even help you to feel more confident in every aspect of your life if you use this stance over time.
It’s sad that we have to spend any energy finding weapons to use against bullies. But, until they no longer exist, we have to do everything we can to protect ourselves. We all deserve to work in a nurturing and supportive environment – free from the bullies!!!
Thanks so much for reading. Would love your comments about body language and perhaps how you’ve used it in your world.
Take care and stay connected!