How To Read Body Language
Communication is undoubtedly an important part of our social interactions. It does not necessarily have to be through speaking or writing to the other person. Humans have evolved to be social creatures, and this evolution manifests as an understanding of our body’s response to certain situations and conversations. This body language is a form of non-verbal communication that is as important as oral and written communication. This article attempts to provide simple interpretations of what certain body postures mean.
• Maintaining eye contact
It is common knowledge that maintaining eye contact while speaking or being spoken to is a sign of confidence. This, of course, can be used for either positive or negative intentions. Positive eye contact is just a show of confidence, no ulterior motive attached. Negative use of eye contact, on the other hand, has an ulterior motive attached. It usually is done to manipulate or deceive the other person. In some cases, breaking eye contact is also a sign the other person is lying.
• Observe the movement of a head
While conversing the speed at which a person nods their head when you are speaking indicates their patience. Slow nodding indicates that the person is interested in what you are saying and wants you to continue talking. Fast nodding indicates the person has heard enough and wants you to finish speaking or give him or her a turn to speak
• Fiddling with clothing
A person who is fiddling with his/her dress is giving an outward show of nervousness. It usually has to do with having dressed poorly but not in all cases. When it is due to being poorly dressed, the fiddling is usually accompanied by breaking eye contact and rushed speech.
• Folded hands and tapping feet
Folded hands and tapping feet is usually a sign of withheld thoughts. It shows a desire to not share or to not be entirely open with the other person. It is not necessarily about lying, as it might be a situation where the person is avoiding saying hurtful or inciting words. Tapping the foot, on the other hand, usually points to impatience or nervousness or both.
Transmission of information and feedback make up the cycle of communication. We all speak and listen through our body. If it is read correctly, it is as good as verbal and written communication. People working in various fields need to learn and master this art for a successful career.
We should also learn how to interpret and understand body language for the sake of our personal lives. Fights and arguments can be avoided if people are able to read each other’s body language.
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