Source List

Commentary on Arrangement

When making this source list there were a number of things I took into consideration before I started. First of all I looked at my topic as a whole and decided, from my perspective, how would I like to read a list of sources on this topic. My initial guiding question had come from watching the Ted talk “Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are” by Amy Cuddy. So I think that from a readers perspective, it would be important to begin reading from where my idea of the question came from. I feel that this source will also force the reader to begin to think about the topic in the way that I did. As this Ted talk was the basis for my guiding question, it helps to lead the reader onto the other ideas. It is important that the reader follows the order of the source list as I carefully selected the order in a way that my thoughts brought me. My first few sources that I have listed are general articles or videos based the topic body language as a whole. I did this so the reader could have a clear understanding of the topic before delving further into the other sources.

As the general sources pass by, I put in some sources that deal with the art that is public speaking. Body language is a key aspect of public speaking and again the mentality of good body language leads onto the further sources that relate to sport. The final few sources focus on the importance of body language when it comes to sport. Personally, being an athlete myself I was always curious about ways that can enhance performance and from what I have found body language can greatly improve sports performance. This list of sources is just the basis for my question and I am intrigued as to where it will take me next.

“Your Body Language Shapes who you Are”

Cuddy, A. (2012, June). Your body language shapes who you are. Retrieved March 27, 2017, from

My first piece of research for my topic was a Ted talk called “Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are”- by Amy Cuddy. This video was produced in June of 2012 and the speaker, Amy Cuddy, is a well-know expert in areas such as social psychology and no verbal behavior. I found very reliable as it is a highly recognized website for educational videos on a wide variety of topics.When beginning my quest on the influence of body language, I had already had an interest in self-improvement and personal psychology. What was interesting to me when I began to watch this video was how various animals have adopted certain “power poses” in order to show a sense of power within the animal kingdom. I was amazed at the fact that by just doing something as simple as broadening their arms or torso, other animals would react in accordance and shell up into a ball which shows a sign of weakness, “So in the animal kingdom, they are about expanding. So you make yourself big, you stretch out, you take up space, you’re basically opening up”. The fact that humans tend to follow the same approach as animals is amazing. It is clearly evident that sports stars or celebrities give off a sense of “power” or “confidence” by simple tricks with their body language. Research has shown that those who experience some sort of “power pose” for just two minutes, tend to have positive benefits within their mental state and self-confidence.

Cuddy speaks about her own personal experiences a couple of times throughout the presentation. These personal experiences tie in with various research studies that have been carried out on this topic. One question that arises from this talk that I am very interested to learn more about is “Can the idea of faking it till you make it really hold true?”. If we would be able to ingrain these so called “power poses” at a young age in junior schools across the country, I feel that peoples lives would only get better in the near future. If two minutes in a power pose can positively influence someone, imagine how amazing children would perform across all domains if they learned this from a very early age. I will end on this quote from Amy Cuddy that I feel is the ultimate reason why the world should try and incorporate theses tactics in schools, “standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident, can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact in our chances for success”.

“The Hidden Power of Smiling”

Gutman, R. (2011, March). The hidden power of smiling. Retrieved March 27, 2017, from

The above link directs you to a Ted talk given by Ron Gutman in March of 2011 on the effects of smiling on the human brain. Gutman is a well known entrepreneur who graduated from Stanford and has carried out lots of research in personalized health and to design ways to help people live healthier, happier lives. He presents us with the idea of babies and how it has been proven that “we are born smiling” “even in the womb”. It has also been linked that smiling can be connected with living longer. Gutman goes on to talk about how Charles Darwin has developed a theory based on the facial feedback response theory. “His theory states that the act of smiling itself actually makes us feel better, rather than smiling being merely a result of feeling good.” This talk ties in with my previous research and again like most of my sources, connects with Amy Cuddy’s Ted talk with the idea that you can actually “fake it till you make it”. It has been proven that smiling can stimulate the same parts of the brain that chocolate does, meaning that our mood is lightened and we feel happier overall. More importantly, not only does smiling effect you on the outside, “smiling can help reduce the level of stress-enhancing hormones like cortisol, adrenaline and dopamine, increase the level of mood-enhancing hormones like endorphins, and reduce overall blood pressure.”

During his talk, Gutman, constantly refers to numerous studies that have been carried out in the past. His ideas are based off these previous studies and help back up his argument about the importance of smiling. Towards the end of this talk he talks about the effects that smiling can have in terms of how other people view you. It raises the question with me about how important is body language/body image when it comes to attracting people of the opposite sex. What I have struggled to find so far is how people can be attracted/un attracted to people with positive/negative body language.

“The Meeting Eyes of Love: How Empathy is Born in us”

The Meeting Eyes of Love: How Empathy Is Born In Us. (n.d.). Retrieved March 27, 2017, from

“From the doting reflection of its mother’s eyes, a baby draws its earliest, wordless lessons about connection, care, and love, and about how being ignored”
Eye contact from mother generates our capacity for love
“We learn to care, quite literally, by observing the caring behavior of our parents toward us.”
If parents spend time on their phones, their children brains will configure in a way to act the same, body language suffers.
“Not surprisingly, children of mothers who display postpartum depression tend to be anxious and distressed themselves.”
As a result of lack of attention (poor body language towards children) the children themselves grow up to have the same traits.

“Presence – How to Pose for Presence”

Cuddy, A. J. C. (2015). Presence: Bringing your boldest self to your biggest challenges.

In this book, the author Amy Cuddy speaks about her own personal experiences with body language and how she uses it in her own life. She also gives ways to work on body language and as I read the chapter “How to pose for presence” I learnt some key ways to use it myself. “ Don’t sit in waiting rooms, hunched over your phone. Stand or walk around instead.” I thought that this quote tied in with my question on how the use of certain technology can effect body language. Here she talks about how using your phone, you automatically revert to a hunched posture, which then in turn leads to poor signals to the brain of lack of confidence etc. I liked when she said that you need to learn how to use your phone as a Allie not an enemy as it can ultimately lead to poor body language and have a detrimental effect on your brain.

“How to Talk to Anyone”

Lowndes, L. (n.d.). How to Talk to Anyone. Retrieved March 27, 2017, from

This book is a very smart collection of different types of ways that someone can use body language in their favor to talk to people. Immediately one quotes that stood out to me was “There are two kinds of people in this life: Those who walk into a room and say, “Well, here I am! And those who walk in and say, “Ahh, there you are.” I felt that this quote summed up my whole research so far in the sense that in reality there are some people who are completely comfortable with themselves in public and there are others who shy away from certain situations as they fear being judged or else getting something wrong. In one chapter the book mentions how eye contact is a key component when it comes to falling in love. It has been proven that eye contact is almost always the first way that two people connect with each other and then form a bond that may or may not be broken.

“Public Speaking: Principles of Public Speaking—Delivery”

The above video discusses the impact that body language has on people. I was baffled by the fact that 90% of the information you obtain from a conversation is trough non-verbal cues. The fact that babies can copy facial expressions from as young as one month of age is amazing.

I would say that overall my subject is not changing as I begin to research it further. In all honesty, my guiding question is going down the road that I had imagined for my topic. The relationship between body language and peoples confidence/ self-esteem is pretty constant. Those who tend to portray a confident body language tend to be more assertive in person an easily approachable. Similarly those who are comfortable with eye-contact have a high self-esteem and are not afraid of face-to-face confrontations.

“Non-verbal behavior in Soccer”

Furley, P., Dicks, M., & Memmert, D. (January 01, 2012). Nonverbal behavior in soccer: the influence of dominant and submissive body language on the impression formation and expectancy of success of soccer players. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, 34, 1, 61-82.

This article came from the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology and was published in 2012. Before looking at this source I had narrowed my focus towards sports performance and body language.  Although when it comes to soccer, goalkeepers say that they fear less confident penalty kick takers as they are more focused. The body language even goes as far as motivation for other teammates. When a person scores a penalty kick, and raises both arms in celebration, his team’s energy level increases and their performance can have a positive outcome. Interestingly, this article also brings up the debate between animals use of body language and power like Amy Cuddy in her Ted Talk. “For example, evidence from evolutionary psychology suggests that the nonverbal expression of dominance and submissiveness has evolved in social animals for fit- ness reasons to quickly and efficiently signal information about rank and status”. I found this source very interesting overall.

“Detection of Nonverbal Winning and Losing Behavior in Sport”

Whittaker-Bleuler, S. A. (January 01, 1980). Detection of nonverbal winning and losing behavior in sport. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 51, 2, 437-40.

This article discusses how nonverbals can be used in sport to either improve performance or worsen performance. An interesting idea came up in this article as it talked about how the body language of an audience can even influence how a team or individual perform. This is evidently seen in soccer as a team that has home advantage seems to have much more energy than the opposing team as a result of greater support from their fans. “Awareness of ones nonverbal behaviors may enhance performance in sport by allowing the projection of dominance rather than appeasement or submissive behavior to the opponent”. It has been proven many time that athletes who are able to detect opponents body language, can have a slight edge when it comes to competition as their can pre-determine what traits their opponent will have and they can adjust their approach as necessary.

Both of my sources constantly referred to previous studies or research that had been done in the past on the topic. They used these references as good back ups for their articles as it gave them strength to say what they wanted. I really enjoyed these two sources as they were more specific to sports.