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HOW TO USE BODY LANGUAGE

Drs. Sharon and Glenn Livingston
Copyright 2004, Psy Tech Inc. All Rights Reserved

Disclaimer: For education only. Please do not use the information in this book as your sole source of information for making decisions about important real life issues. Although the authors hold doctorates in psychology, and although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the findings presented herein, body language is NOT an exact science, and the interpretations offered in this book are not the only ones possible. Most importantly, please do not utilize this book in lieu of a consultation with a licensed mental health or medical professional.

Table Of Contents
HOW TO USE BODY LANGUAGE .........................................................................................................................1
A WORD ON BEING GENUINE AND SPONTANEOUS .......................................................................................................4 BODY LANGUAGE OVERVIEW ...................................................................................................................................6

Why Learn To Read and Control Body Language? .............................................................................................6 Definition of Body Language (Kinesics) ..............................................................................................................7 Is It Learned Or Instinctual?................................................................................................................................7 Is Body Language Under Our Conscious Control? .............................................................................................8 What Does Body Language Include? ...................................................................................................................8 What Body Language Does Not Include ..............................................................................................................8 Is It Like A Super-Hero Power?...........................................................................................................................9 What Do Professionals Do With Body Language? ............................................................................................10 Body Language Is Only One Piece Of The Puzzle .............................................................................................11 What Percent Of Communication Comes Through Body Language? ................................................................11 Is Kinesics An Exact Science?............................................................................................................................12 FACTORS WHICH INFLUENCE INTERPRETATION ......................................................................................................14 Gender Differences ............................................................................................................................................14 Cultural Differences...........................................................................................................................................16 Familiarity And Personal vs. Professional Settings...........................................................................................16 The Bottom Line on Context...............................................................................................................................17 SEXUAL AND ROMANTIC ATTRACTION ...................................................................................................................18 Sexual and Romantic Gestures...........................................................................................................................18 The Bodily Signs of Friendship Are Similar To Romantic Interest, But Shorter Lasting...................................22 Intense Eye Contact ...........................................................................................................................................24 Genuine Romantic Interest vs. Sexual Lust ........................................................................................................24 Other Romantically-Related Quandaries...........................................................................................................27 HOW TO CREATE SEXUAL ATTRACTION .................................................................................................................29 The First Impression ..........................................................................................................................................29 The Four Rules of Creating Attraction ..............................................................................................................33 DETECTING LIES ......................................................................................................................................................35 Outright or Overt Lying .....................................................................................................................................35 Semi or Covert Lying .........................................................................................................................................37 Children vs. Adults.............................................................................................................................................38 Being Used .........................................................................................................................................................38 Controlling/Covering Up Body Language .........................................................................................................39 Body Language as a Mental Health Indicator ...................................................................................................39 Cheating Spouse.................................................................................................................................................39 READING PEOPLE’S MINDS ......................................................................................................................................42 General Techniques ...........................................................................................................................................44 Building Trust and Erecting Friendships...........................................................................................................47 Doctor/Patient Kinesics .....................................................................................................................................48 Rejection vs. Acceptance....................................................................................................................................49 SELLING AND INFLUENCING ....................................................................................................................................50 Increasing the Probability of a Sale...................................................................................................................50 Neutralizing Angry Customers...........................................................................................................................53 Nervousness .......................................................................................................................................................54 A “Textbook” Example ......................................................................................................................................57 Are You Making A Good Impression?................................................................................................................58 On the Job Interview ..........................................................................................................................................59 Confidence .........................................................................................................................................................59 Dominance vs. Submission.................................................................................................................................59 Negative vs. Positive Body Language ................................................................................................................60 BODY PART SPECIFICS .............................................................................................................................................62

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Eyes....................................................................................................................................................................62 Facial Expressions.............................................................................................................................................68 Hair....................................................................................................................................................................71 Legs....................................................................................................................................................................72 Head...................................................................................................................................................................73 Hands .................................................................................................................................................................74 Chin....................................................................................................................................................................76 Groin Area .........................................................................................................................................................77 Voice Box ...........................................................................................................................................................77 Waist ..................................................................................................................................................................77 Nose ...................................................................................................................................................................78 Arms ...................................................................................................................................................................78 Feet ....................................................................................................................................................................79 Ear .....................................................................................................................................................................79 BODY LANGUAGE DIFFERENCES ACROSS CULTURAL BOUNDARIES ........................................................................81 Insulting Gestures ..............................................................................................................................................81 Greetings............................................................................................................................................................82 Finger Pointing ..................................................................................................................................................84 The Asian Handshake.........................................................................................................................................84 Behaving Yourself Abroad .................................................................................................................................85 MIRRORING BODY LANGUAGE ................................................................................................................................90 Cats ....................................................................................................................................................................91 Dogs ...................................................................................................................................................................93 Horses ................................................................................................................................................................95 SOME VERY SPECIFIC POSTURES AND MOVEMENTS ...............................................................................................98 SOME FINAL MISCELLANEOUS THOUGHTS ............................................................................................................100 Signs That You Are Invading Someone’s Personal Territory: .........................................................................100 Body Language Clichés ...................................................................................................................................100 The Impact of Body Language on Mood ..........................................................................................................100 In Conclusion ...................................................................................................................................................101 APPENDIX A – PERSONALITY TRAITS OFTEN ASSOCIATED WITH PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS...........................102

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A WORD ON BEING GENUINE AND SPONTANEOUS
Dear Reader: Thank you so very much for your interest in Body Language – an extremely powerful tool which can improve your life in many ways. With patience, persistence, and practice you can use nonverbal behavioral patterns to more easily detect truth and lies, project a more confident, powerful presence, read romantic attraction, CREATE romantic and sexual interest in others without being obvious, persuade, influence, and sell better, put people at ease, create a sense of trust, make friends … and even interact better with household pets! We realize that much of this is very exciting, and you will probably wish to run out and work with the techniques right away. Kudos! But before you do, please take a moment to consider this analogy. Working with body language is something like being a jazz musician. When (s)he performs, a jazz musician spontaneously breathes ‘soul’ into her music, which influences the other musicians with whom (s)he is playing. However, it’s a VERY rare jazz player who is born with this ability. Rather, the majority attain it by practicing scales and studying musical theory. This experience gives them options that people who haven’t studied the scales just don’t have. They know which notes are possible in a given situation, what impact they are likely to have in a particular sequence, at a particular volume, etc. It’s only after such practice that they are able to breathe ‘soul’ into their work. The scales eventually become second nature. When this happens the musician no longer needs to think about scales and theory, and is freed to connect with their feelings and the people around them, and their feelings then unconsciously flow right through their scales and musical theories, into their instrument. Well, you are likely to have much the same experience in your work with body language (except that there are far fewer scales to master, and there is far less theory you must know). Initially, as you try many of these techniques, you will be practicing individual notes which are not yet fully connected to your ‘soul’. As such you may feel awkward and you may not get the result you hoped for right away. But with time and patience, using body language will become second nature to you and you will ‘breathe life’ into it! Last, it’s important that you know that all people have built in B.S. detectors, so body language is much more effective when used to convey something you genuinely desire, feel, or believe. For example, if you want to put someone at ease, you’ll need to find something that you genuinely like about that person and think about it while you smile, nod, position your feet towards them, lean in slightly, and pull your shoulders back. If you neglect the mental

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component and only engage in the “techniques”, people will see right through you and you won’t have the impact you desire. So, with these two considerations in mind … 1) The fact that body language techniques are like individual notes which only become soulful, spontaneous music only with practice 2) The fact that body language works best when you genuinely feel that which you are trying to communicate ... let’s begin our adventure!

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BODY LANGUAGE OVERVIEW
Interest in body language first gained popularity in the early 1970s when Fast wrote the pivotal book, appropriately titled “Body Language”. Since then, it has gone on to become the topic of dozens of books and a specialty subject of psychologists around the globe. Today, body language has become a household term and, thanks in large part to research completed during the 1990s’ “Decade of the Brain”, many of the meanings behind the nonverbal signs and cues Fast wrote about in 1970 are now backed by neuroscience. In other words, time hasn’t so much changed body language as helped it to evolve into something more—more compelling, more concrete and more scientific.

Why Learn To Read and Control Body Language?

It’s Almost Like Reading Minds!
Because so much of a person’s body language is reflexive and because nonverbal cues can contradict what a person is actually saying, learning how to read such cues (and also how to control our own body language) gives a person a superior edge in: Detecting truth and lies. Discovering when someone is attracted. Creating sexual and romantic interest. Portraying confidence and commanding respect. Putting people at ease. Making friends. Creating a sense of trust. Persuading, selling, and influencing other people. Much more!

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Definition of Body Language (Kinesics)
Body Language or “Kinesics” is the study of nonverbal communication. Although not an exact science, the serious student of body language can gain an extraordinary advantage in both social and professional situations.

Is It Learned Or Instinctual?
Body language is BOTH a learned and instinctual process. Some of it is hard wired and therefore the same in all humans – the rest varies depending upon how and where the person was raised. For example, some facial expressions (like smiling to indicate happiness and frowning to indicate displeasure) are universal. These gestures stem from hard wired impulses - signals sent directly from the lower brain to the facial muscles. As a result, there isn’t a lot of opportunity for a person to purposefully modify their expression, and you see the SAME expression from culture to culture all around the world.
By the way, the idea that certain forms of nonverbal communication are universal to all humans dates all the way back to Darwin – documenting that interest in body language goes as far back as the early 1800’s.

But many aspects of body language DO vary from person to person and culture to culture, indicating that body language is also a LEARNED process. In other words:

The body language we convey to the world is a combination of instinct, learned behavior and imitation of others.

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Is Body Language Under Our Conscious Control?
The vast majority of people exhibit body language clues without being aware they are doing so because much of the behavior is either autonomic (hard wired and reflexive), or so highly conditioned in their life that they do it without thinking. For example, while a gesture like slapping our forehead to emphasize our forgetfulness is deliberate, most of the nonverbal cues we give off are done without our conscious knowledge. However, the average person has the ABILITY to BECOME AWARE of most aspects of their body language. (It is this fact which provides the body language student the opportunity to leverage their knowledge). Although body language encompasses both conscious and unconscious postures and gestures, special attention is given to those movements and postures done without awareness, for it is these which often ‘give away’ the actor’s true thoughts and feelings.

What Does Body Language Include?
Body language can include any reflexive or non-reflexive bodily movements that an individual uses to convey a message to the outside world.

What Body Language Does Not Include
“Body Language” includes postures and movements, not the meaning of static physical features, such as the shape of a person’s nose. (We have included a brief appendix on reported personality traits associated with static physical features – see Appendix A). We have chosen to focus this book on body language proper, and NOT on static physical features because the research findings are much more reliable, and because the study of body language also gives the reader ‘body language leverage’ (he or she can change his or her own body language, but could not change his or her own static physical features). Body language proper (movements, gestures, and posture) CAN convey something about personality however. For example, when a person hunches her shoulders, drops her head, draws her chest inward and tenses her muscles, she is likely to be pessimistic of nature and full of discouragement, despondency, hatred, arrogance and jealousy. A person who stands tall, with her weight evenly distributed and head held high, on the other hand, tends to be highly confident and to exhibit both physical and mental strength in finishing assigned tasks.

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We WILL discuss the personality implications of posture in much greater detail throughout the book (and indeed, such an understanding is necessary to portray confidence through body language).

Is It Like A Super-Hero Power?
Well – almost, but not quite. The practiced study of body language won’t give someone X-ray vision or the ability to fly, but to some extent it does equip us with the capability to read others’ minds. That’s because a large portion of a person’s nonverbal cues are portrayed unconsciously. Without knowing she is doing so, a person gives off clues to what she is thinking or feeling which the body language expert can pick up, often before the person herself is aware of these thoughts and feelings! (So it’s a little like “mind reading”, but not quite). However, no matter how carefully she studies and practices kinesics, she should not expect to become a psychic. While kinesics consists of many scientific findings, and while it gives us access to MUCH MORE of a person’s intended communications than the untrained observer picks up, it can not tell us ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING a person is thinking, nor can it predict the future with 100% certainty.

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It’s kind of like being a really good student of chess …

if you know the board and the way all the pieces can move, you’ll also quickly realize that there are only a limited number of things your opponent could be up to, and you’re in a reasonably good position to predict her next move.

What Do Professionals Do With Body Language?
Well, the answers to this are as vast as your imagination, but let’s take the example of a psychiatrist trained to pick up on people’s bodily signals. The doctor can use this ability to her advantage when dealing with a new patient who is unreceptive or unable to open up. By pointing out a patient’s unconscious nonverbal cues, the psychiatrist might show her patient how bodily cues are conveying something more than what s/he is actually saying, thus providing the opportunity to explore thoughts and feelings of which the patient would otherwise remain unaware. In so doing, the doctor helps the patient obtain a clearer understanding of him/herself. Of course, there are salespeople who use body language to understand their prospects’ desires and fears, interrogation professionals who use it to determine whether someone is telling the truth, people who use it to attract the opposite sex, speakers who use it to command respect and attention – the list goes on and on.

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Body Language Is Only One Piece Of The Puzzle

Through body language, a person can convey a host of feelings without actually speaking a single word. As a result, body language truly is a “language” in and of itself. And like any other language, the context of the communication is extremely important if we are to accurately understand the speaker. In other words:

Properly reading nonverbal cues requires taking ALL gestures into consideration, as well as their spoken words and tone of voice. Avoid leaping to judgments based on a SINGLE movement!
Body language provides you with MORE information than you would otherwise have in a given situation – but it does not render the other information irrelevant. The art of reading body language is, in fact, much more precise when conducted in tandem with the spoken word.

What Percent Of Communication Comes Through Body Language?
Experts in the field of communication often quote the 55/38/7 “rule” that states, “research has shown that people derive only about 7% of the meaning of a communication from the words themselves which the speaker uses (verbalized emotion), about 38% is based on tone of voice, and a whopping 55% from the speaker’s body language.”

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What exactly is this research? In the 1960’s a UCLA professor by the name of Albert Mehrabian ran a series of experiments on college students. The results of these studies were published in May and June 1967, respectively, in two journals: Journal of Personality and Social Psychology and the Journal of Consulting Psychology. Mehrabian’s published findings went on to become the 55/38/7 rule so often quoted in the science of kinesics today. Since that time, some people have noted that Mehrabian’s subjects (college students) were not indicative of the general population, and his experiment may have been unduly simplified. Instead, it may be that all three forms of communication (words, tone of voice, and body language) must be given more equal weight when interpreting a speaker’s message. (The important exception is in sales situations, where body language DOES account for the vast majority of the communication). Regardless of the actual percentages one thing is clear:

Without understanding a person’s body language we are missing out on a VERY significant part of their communication!!
Is Kinesics An Exact Science?
Because people can learn to mask or fake their nonverbal cues (indeed, readers of this book will learn to prevent others from reading their body language if that is their desire), body language will never be an exact science. But it the rare person who puts in the effort to create such a mask, and even the rarer one who can maintain it - making the mastery of deciphering nonverbal cues in most situations quite possible, and well worth the effort.

With practice and a keen understanding of the basics, the study of body language can give you a tremendous edge! It is our intention to provide this for you ☺ 12

Body Language Overview
• • • • • • • • Neuroscience now backs up body language theories. Mastering body language gives people an edge in dealing with others. The scientific term for nonverbal communication is kinesics. Body language is both a learned and instinctual process. Body language includes both reflexive and non-reflexive bodily movements. Body language will NOT make you a psychic. Single movements do not give a clear body language picture. Words, tone of voice and body language must be given near equal weight when interpreting a speaker’s message.

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FACTORS WHICH INFLUENCE INTERPRETATION
Gender, culture, level of familiarity, and whether the setting is personal or professional all have an impact on how body language is interpreted. In this chapter, we briefly examine each of these factors. (We will bring them to your attention again throughout the book where they are relevant).

Gender Differences
Because women are more communicative in general (while men are more analytical), they use both verbal and nonverbal cues more frequently in their communication with others. A study conducted on the way women and men enter a room illuminates this. On average, women exhibited 27 distinctive body movements while men only displayed 12 when entering a room. (Observe the difference below!)

On the surface one might think this difference in initial expressive gestures relates only to the fact that women are more outwardly expressive of their emotions. But there is actually a much more important implication: When observers are asked to rate the estimated power or status of a person entering a room, they give higher ratings to people who make fewer physical gestures!

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The less you move about when you enter a room, the more powerful and credible you are perceived to be!
As a result, women who are striving for equal status with their male counterparts should be particularly conscious, and in control of, their bodily movements. The reason for gender differences in expressive tendency can be traced all the way back to infancy. It seems that baby boys are more likely to be put down early, and are less frequently touched than are girls. Girls are taught from their earliest stages of development that public displays of affection are acceptable, while boys are conditioned to keep their emotions and feelings to themselves. That’s why women have no problem hugging others in most any situation while men find it difficult to embrace and show empathy under even the most private circumstances.

The above is perhaps the most glaring example and serves to highlight the importance of considering gender in interpreting body language.

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Cultural Differences
If the differences between male and female body language are visible, differences between diverse cultures are even more striking. In fact, the variations are so profound that we devote an entire chapter to this subject! In the Cultural Differences chapter we examine not only the subtle differences in such gestures as greeting and pointing, but we’ll also delve into behaviors you should adhere to or avoid when visiting particular parts of the world. For the time being, suffice it to say …

What is a generally accepted gesture in one culture can be taken as outright obscene in another!
Familiarity And Personal vs. Professional Settings
When we are around someone we are familiar with, our body language naturally becomes more relaxed. Whereas touching and embracing are commonplace gestures in the presence of friends and family, such demonstrations of affection and emotion are less acceptable in the workplace. A normally demonstrative father may become downright stolid when placed in the more rigid workplace environment. As such, the body language student must take the situation into account, noting whether it is more professional or personal, as vastly different interpretations of postures and gestures in each situation will apply. For example, consider a work situation involving two members of the opposite sex. While space constraints and job duties may warrant close contact, professional men and women usually want to avoid sending off sexual cues toward one another. In such a PROFESSIONAL situation, one might create the appropriate distance by omitting an essential part of the normally sexual body language, or by making it incomplete. For example, a man and a woman who find themselves in close face-to-face physical contact may turn part of their bodies away from each other to eliminate the flirting factor. If you were to observe the same body language in a clearly PERSONAL situation however, it might suggest that the two were angry (or even disgusted) with one another.

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• • •

Factors Which Influence Interpretation Women exhibit more nonverbal cues than men. Body language can vary vastly from culture to culture. An individual’s body language varies significantly, depending on whether the setting is personal or professional.

The Bottom Line on Context
CONTEXTUAL FACTORS To accurately interpret body language in most circumstances, one needs to be aware, at minimum, of … 1) The culture in which it takes place. 2) Whether the environment is personal or professional. 3) The genders of the participants.

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SEXUAL AND ROMANTIC ATTRACTION
Now that you’re becoming more familiar with body language guidelines, you’re probably ready to get down to the nitty-gritty. We’ve already discussed how some nonverbal cues which might at first appear flirtatious aren’t necessarily so under every circumstance. So, how exactly do you tell if someone is interested in getting to know you romantically? And how do you distinguish purely sexual vs. romantic interest?

Sexual and Romantic Gestures
There are several unconscious gestures both men and women employ when they are attracted to a member of the opposite sex. These signals usually come in a progressive series, each step taking the flirtation a bit further based on response (or at least silent concession) from the prospective partner. In a nutshell, these stages can be defined as follows:
Step 1: Catching one’s gaze. For example, when a man is interested in a woman, the woman will likely “feel his eyes upon her.” When she meets his gaze she will note that he holds it longer than is typically considered proper or customary. The gaze might turn into a “roaming of the body,” with the eyes lingering momentarily on sexual body parts. Women see this all the time when they find men ogling their breasts rather than concentrating on their faces.

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Step 2: Preening. This term for a specific type of behavioral pattern was coined by professor of psychiatry, Dr. Albert E. Scheflen. When a woman preens, she may stroke, twirl or toss her hair, check her makeup in a mirror, rearrange her clothing. When a man preens, he might comb or pat down his hair, button his sports jacket or fiddle with his tie. He might also pull up his socks or straighten out the creases in his dress slacks.

Step 3: Moving in for the kill. If he has not yet been cut down, it’s now time for him to make his move. This will come in the form of decreasing distance between the pursuer and the pursued. By this point in the flirtation game, if you’re the pursued, you probably already realize someone is attracted to you. For the less perceptive, however, some common signals that someone in your close presence is trying to command your romantic attention include: pouting of the lips, crossing and uncrossing of the legs, placing the hands on the hips, thrusting the hips outward and leaning of one’s body in toward you.

Obviously, if a woman is to return her pursuer’s interest, she will want to encourage him to proceed with each of these steps. That’s a simple matter of returning the gaze, smiling warmly in invitation, matching his preening gestures and mirroring (copying) his behavioral patterns. Doing so will put him more at ease and, therefore, make him more likely to make his move.

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SIGNS OF A WOMAN’S INTEREST IN A MAN
Returning the gaze (especially if prolonged). Closing distance between her and her target. Preening (twirling or playing with hair, checking makeup, re-arranging clothing). Swaying of her body, hips and shoulders as she walks. Slightly separating her legs (in invitation) when seated. Holding her hands near her breasts or her thigh as she talks. Touching his thigh with her own thigh or brushing it with her hand. Forward thrusting of her breasts and pouting of her lips.
On the other hand, when a woman is not open to advances, she will:
display a rigid posture cross her legs when seated cross her arms over her breasts

Sometimes these signals are just signs of insecurity or fear, however. To determine what she really means, a man has to take all of a woman’s body language cues into consideration if he hopes to read her intentions correctly. If he determines that she is interested but merely too shy to express herself, he can attempt to alter her closed-mindedness by making himself more open. If her interest is pure, she will eventually begin to match his demeanor and open herself up as well.

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Here is how a man can display interest in a woman:

Signs of a Man’s Interest in a Woman
Forward-thrust hips. Legs slightly apart. Swaggering as he walks. Thumbs through belt loops, fingers pointed down toward genitals.
Notice these are similar, yet in some ways more subtle, than a woman’s sexual body language. As in other forms of communication, women are more expressive in indicating their romantic interest. Following this rationale, signs of non-interest from men are also frequently less obvious, but still very similar to those of a woman. When a man is not romantically interested in a woman he will:
Display rigidity in his posture (the same as a disinterested woman would) Cross his legs and/or arms when seated, closing off his body to advances Avert his gaze so as not to encourage advancement

All of this, of course, becomes much trickier when you factor in friendship, business relationship and sexual versus romantic interest. Because they are comfortable in each other’s presence, friends of the opposite sex often give off flirtatious cues, even though they may have no romantic

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interest in each other. Let’s examine some of these relationships and how they relate to attraction more closely.

The Bodily Signs of Friendship Are Similar To Romantic Interest, But Shorter Lasting
Have you ever wondered – are we just friends, or something more? Across a crowded room, he catches your eyes, winks and flashes you his widest smile. To the casual observer, he’s making a pass! But no, he’s your best friend and he just wants to remind you of that fact, despite the physical distance between you. Or does he? In the presence of a stranger, the signs are hard to misinterpret, but how do you differentiate a romantic gesture from a friendly one when you already know the person in question? The answer lies in being able to spot the nonverbal signs of a really good friendship.

The fact of the matter is, when you really like someone as a friend, your body language very closely mimics the body language of people in love.
In the beginning of ANY positive relationship (romantic or otherwise), you will greet each other enthusiastically (perhaps even hugging and kissing, depending on your natural demonstrativeness), and look at, smile and nod in agreement more often when in the presence of the other.

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Because you make each other feel good, you will enjoy being around each other. As a result, you will stand closer, face each other head on and touch each other (linking arms or hands, patting each other on the back, etc.). In a show of solidarity, you will begin acting alike, both verbally and nonverbally.

The key point is – new friendships display more or less the SAME body language as do new romances! However, once the ‘newness’ of the relationship wears off, the body language will progress in one of two directions. If the relationship is to settle down into more of a friendship than a romance, many of the overt signs of affection slow down or die completely. At this point, you’ll soon find yourselves settling into the “long time friends” role (which mimics a ‘married couple’). That is, you’ll still be comfortable in each other’s presence, but you’ll no longer feel the need to outwardly display your affections for one another. On the other hand, if a romantic relationship is to develop, you will find your partner responding to you in the progression of interest outlined in the previous section. (She will gaze, preen, and close distance more regularly and more intensely, and he will respond in kind – please see the “Sexual and Romantic Gestures” section above). If you’re in a new friendship and you’re unsure whether it might lead to romantic possibilities, hold off for a few weeks, and try engaging more frequently in some of the more subtle sexual and romantic gestures outlined above. If the relationship still settled into a relaxed ‘married couple’ or ‘long time friend’ mode, you’ll save face by not broaching the topic too soon.

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Intense Eye Contact
Sustained eye contact can be (especially when taken in combination with other bodily cues) an obvious signal of attraction. However, there may be certain situations where an intense gaze leaves you wondering exactly what someone’s intentions are. For example, if a guy stares a woman in the eyes in a business situation, but he stares hard into her eyes, is there any possibility he likes her? We must examine the context of the situation and the accompanying gestures. If a scenario such as this occurs in, say, a classroom or a business meeting, it may only indicate that the man is extremely interested in what the woman is saying. As mentioned in the Personal vs. Professional Differences section, look for indications like turning part of his body away from the woman or references to the professional nature of the encounter. If these aspects are present, you can assume interest in communication only. If they are absent, however, then there is a distinct possibility of romantic interest. In order to make a final determination, she will need to watch for other nonverbal signals of interest as discussed throughout the chapter. The same rules can apply to a guy who always stares at a young woman in her school hallways, but never says hi. She may be unsure whether he likes her. It could be that he’s just too shy to approach her or he might just be a naturally curious gawker. How does she tell the difference? Again, by watching for other nonverbal cues that indicate romantic interest or by non-verbally returning and encouraging his interest to see if he takes things a step farther.

Genuine Romantic Interest vs. Sexual Lust
Things get even trickier for the woman who is seeking a long-term partner as opposed to a onenight stand. How does she weed out men who are only interested in her sexually? The variations in romantic gestures are subtle in comparison to sexual body language, but as a general rule of thumb, purely sexual overtures will be more pronounced and obvious. In her book, Reading People, Jo-Ellen Dimitrius has compiled a list of body language cues that typically indicate a more purely sexual interest across both genders. Included on that list are:

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• • • • • • • • • •

Intense eye contact (which will often shift to sexual organs, like the breasts and the genitalia, or looking the intended up and down). An overly exaggerated or coy smile. Concocted laughter Winking Licking the lips to wet them. Touching oneself in a flirtatious manner. Overtly touching one’s target. Overt thrusting out of the chest or hips. Walking with a swagger (men) or swaying of the hips (women). Wearing of revealing clothing or excessive makeup, perfume or cologne.

How To Tell If A Woman Is Playing Hard To Get
A woman who is playing hard to get may display any of the above tactics before turning away with an aloof air. She knows that the “always want what they can’t have” mantra holds true for most men. To determine if her interest is genuine though, a man need only look into her eyes. If she’s truly attracted, her eyes might momentarily drop, but they’ll always return to meet his. Moreover, a man can detect that proverbial “twinkling” or dancing of the eyes when a woman is romantically attracted to him.

How To Tell If A Man Is Romantically Interested or Only Lustfully Inclined
A woman can use her knowledge of body language to determine whether a man is truly romance oriented or just lustfully inclined. For example, if a man is interested only in her body, he will likely display the above behaviors and nothing else. Because he’s not interested in getting to know her on anything more than a physical level, he’ll have difficulty carrying on a conversation without being constantly interrupted by such behaviors. On the other hand, if he IS romantically inclined and the woman’s mind is as important to him as her body, she will observe that he: • Maintains direct eye contact with her (with fewer gazes at the sexual organs),

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• •

Nods in agreement to many things she says, (or at least to encourage more conversation) and Periodically steps away or avoids physical contact in favor of a position where he can more easily see her face for a good conversation.

More Subtle Signs of A Man’s Genuine Interest
A woman might notice a man stroking or caressing one of her personal belongings (like a handbag, gloves or scarf). As physical extensions of her, touching of these items is an indication that he would like to touch her but does not feel the appropriate level of intimacy has been established yet to do so (and he wishes to respect her wishes so as not to endanger the relationship). A man may also shift all of his body to face a woman so that he can give her his full attention. While having his upper body (face and chest) facing her can be a sign of interest, a forwardfacing lower body (legs and feet) is more telling. In most one-on-one communication, it’s just common courtesy to face your counterpart. There are, however, no hard and fast rules stipulating you must do so with your lower body. Hence, if a woman wants to know if a man is truly interested, she may take a look at his feet. A genuinely interested man will also maintain a comfortable distance, never imposing on a woman’s personal space. These are all signs that he genuinely likes her as opposed to just wanting her to be the object of his arm (or his bed) for the evening.

Relationship Wear Out vs. The End of the Honeymoon Period
After the initial headiness of a new relationship wears off women often become concerned about a reduced level of physical contact. This may cause women to question their partner’s feelings. Is he merely comfortable or has he grown bored? This is what is known as the “married couple” syndrome, discussed previously. When couples have grown comfortable with one another, they no longer feel the need to outwardly display their affections for one another. But it’s actually totally natural and doesn’t indicate a failing in the relationship.

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More important are signs of synchronicity between two people – things like walking in step, shifting of positions simultaneously, even reaching for your forks at the same time. All of these nonverbal cues can be taken as reassurance that the couple is in synch and in love.

Other Romantically-Related Quandaries
How can you tell when someone from the opposite sex is attracted to you but trying to hold back their feelings for fear of rejection?
Well, for example, a man might find a woman averting her eyes when he meets her gaze. If there is genuine interest, she will return to gazing at him once he looks away. A man might also notice a woman shifting in her seat or fiddling with her clothing or hair … or surreptitiously brushing a hand across his arm or making an excuse to touch his hand.

These are flirtatious signals, but they’re also nervous gestures. Someone who is attracted to you but trying to hide that fact will fall back on these nonverbal cues as a way of releasing their nervous energy. What she may not be aware of is the fact that she is simultaneously flirting with you (exactly what she was trying to avoid in the first place!). The above also holds true for men who are trying not to display their attraction for women.

Is confident body language the same as flirting and attractive body language?
While it’s true that the two circumstances have some body language cues in common, ….

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Flirtatious behavior is not the same as confidence.
In a romantic situation: The posture will be more relaxed The eyes will be more playful The proximity (in terms of personal space) will be more pronounced The body (arms and legs) will be more open The hands will be more animated The smile will be warmer.
Sexual and Romantic Attraction Flirtatious body language cues come in a three-step progression: gazing, preening, moving in. The signs of attraction in a man are similar yet more subtle than those displayed by a woman. Friendship gestures can be differentiated from romantic gestures by their length and intensity. Intense eye contact does not always indicate romantic interest. Sexual overtures are more pronounced than romantic ones. The eyes tell the true story when it comes to a woman’s genuine interest. A genuinely interested man will turn his feet toward his romantic interest. Synchronicity in movement often occurs between two people who are long-time lovers. Flirtatious behavior and confidence are two entirely different scenarios.

• • • • • • • • •

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HOW TO CREATE SEXUAL ATTRACTION
The First Impression
Like most areas of life, you only get one chance to make a first impression on the opposite sex, so why not make it a good one? Conscious control of your body language can help you do just that.

The first step in creating sexual attraction is an open posture.
Stand or sit in an inviting way so that you are approachable. You don’t want to make yourself appear nonchalant or rigid by closing off your body. Arms laced across the chest, crossed legs and hunched shoulders are all overt signals that you don’t want to be bothered.

Next – FACE your prospective mate.
An inviting posture, is not enough if you want someone to take the initiative and approach YOU. You also need to face your romantic prospect. (Sitting with an open and inviting posture isn’t going to cut it if your back is to the person you’re hoping to interest). Make sure your ENTIRE body is facing the person you hope to attract. A forward-facing lower body (legs and feet) is much more indicative of interest than just the face and shoulders.

Once you’ve mastered the art of an inviting posture, there are other steps you can take to stimulate the opposite sex without being overtly obvious. If employed subtly, there are certain body language cues that can draw the opposite sex’s interest in you without him/her even being aware of it! Kirstin Carey, President of Orange Tree Training & Speaking Group, Inc. and a communications expert, lists five nonverbal cues that send off the right sexual attraction signals. If you become

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proficient with these flirtatious signals, you’ll not only be better equipped to find a romantic partner but you’ll also be more attuned to picking up on others’ sexual interest in you! Here are the secret signs that someone is flirting with you: 1) The Flirting Triangle (a special form of ‘the gaze’). Carey refers to a “Flirting Triangle” because an interested gaze starts wide at the eyes and works itself down, stopping at a concentrated spot on the body, which varies with the level of interest involved. For example, in a business situation, the gaze will descend only as far as the bridge of the nose. In the presence of friends, the gaze will drop down as far as the mouth. In a romantic situation, the triangle becomes much more sweeping and encompassing, ultimately dropping to the chest or (for the more daring) the genital region. Carey further points out that “the more intense the flirting, the more intensely we’ll look from our target’s one eye to their other—and the more time we’ll spend looking at their mouth.” Why the mouth? It’s a signal that someone is fantasizing about kissing! 2) Mirroring. We return to this concept time and time again throughout this book because it’s one of the most influential body language skills we can possess. Whether you want to convince someone to adopt your ideas, buy something from you, or (more appropriately for this section) to go out with you, you will find this nonverbal technique invaluable! In a nutshell, mirroring means that: “When A intentionally mimics B’s body language, B will be more likely to have confidence in A.” In other words, whatever movement you make, she also makes, or vice versa. The rationale behind the concept is to get someone to like you. We instinctively like someone who is like us; that’s why the mirroring technique works so well in so many different situations. (Preference for mirroring actually starts in childhood when we develop our internal ‘pictures’ of ourselves).

Hence, if you find someone of the opposite sex copying your postures and gestures, it’s a good indication that she is interested in you. In flirtatious situations, mirroring serves as a bonding mechanism. The sooner you bond with an individual the sooner you

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can move things on to the next level. After all, isn’t that the purpose of flirting in the first place…to get your intended to allow you to take things to the next level? As a caveat to this rule, keep these two mirroring guidelines in mind. Never mirror negative body language, which will be seen as condescension or mimicry and will likely produce the opposite effect from the one you intended. Instead, always focus on the positive. Secondly, subtly capture the spirit of the gesture rather than imitating your romantic prospect like an ape. As a general rule of thumb, allow approximately 50 seconds to pass before copying your intended’s gestures. 3) The Eyebrow Flash. When we first encounter someone we find attractive, our eyebrows instinctively rise and fall in a flirtatious pattern. Recognizing this as an unconscious signal of physical desire can be very advantageous to the single individual who is looking for romance. That’s because someone who is attracted to you will raise and lower their eyebrows at you too. This is true of every single culture on earth. While many body language cues vary from culture to culture (as you will learn in a later chapter of this book), this is not one of those situations. Carey states, “In fact, some experts claim it’s the most instantly recognized non-verbal sign of friendly greeting in the world.”

The Eyebrow Flash is the most universal non-verbal sign of a friendly greeting in the world. The downside of this is that the gesture is hard to register. In fact, Carey estimates that “the whole thing lasts [only] about a fifth of a second!” So, while this is an obvious sign of attraction, it’s one you will have to carefully train your eye to pick up on. Given its brevity, there’s no margin for error. On the other hand, you can manipulate this gesture to your advantage. If you want to let someone know you are interested in him/her, magnify the eyebrow flash as you catch his/her gaze. Couple this raising of your eyebrows with a genuine smile and your prospect will be hard-pressed to miss your romantic inclinations.

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4) Pointing. We return yet again to the old body language basic of watching the directional inclination of the entire body and its various parts. In this particular instance, the focus is on the direction of your romantic prospect’s feet and hands. In other words, pay attention to what his/her outer limbs are up to. It’s a natural reaction for people to point at things that draw their interest. That includes other people. So, the next time someone is pointing the finger at you, consider that it might be a flirtatious move rather than an accusing gesture. Likewise, on a more subconscious level, people will often position themselves so that their hands, arms, feet, legs, toes and even their entire body are pointing at the person in whom they are interested. This is the body’s instinctive way of indicating interest in something or someone. It’s also another body language tactic you can manipulate to your advantage. As previously pointed out, if you’ve got your eye on someone, don’t close yourself up to them. Even if you are unable to elicit direct eye contact, turn your body in their direction. Eventually, they will feel your eyes upon them. Then there’ll be no mistaking or denying the fact that you are genuinely interested. 5) Blinking. The eyes might not exactly be the windows to the soul, but they can be gateways to romantic interest. If you want to know if someone is interested in you, focus on their pupils, which instinctively dilate when a person sees something, or someone!, that interests them. Likewise, the blinking rate proportionately increases with this augmentation in pupil size. Again, being aware of this fact can be used to your advantage in the dating world.

To increase your chances of garnering someone’s romantic attention, Carey recommends you try this strategy on for size: “Increase the blink rate of the person you’re talking to, by blinking more yourself. If the person likes you, they’ll unconsciously try to match your blink rate to keep in sync with you, which in turn, makes you both feel more attracted to each other!” Given that mirroring is another effective way of drawing someone’s sexual interest, it all begins to make sense, doesn’t it?

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Creating Romantic or Sexual Attraction At The First Impression – Summary
Adopt an open posture Face your prospect Use the ‘flirting triangle gaze’, beginning at the eyes, and moving down the face, stopping for a prolonged, but not obvious period at the mouth, then returning to the eyes. Subtly raise and lower your eyebrows upon first contact Position your feet and hands so that they point towards your prospect Mirror your prospect’s positive body language and gestures (ignore the negative) Subtly increase your ‘blink’ rate, in an attempt to get them to increase theirs and dilate their pupils

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Of course, none of the above can guarantee your prospect will be sexually attracted because a certain amount of it is in the genetic match (things no one can control) – but you can certainly maximize your odds!

The Four Rules of Creating Attraction
Suppose you’re interested in a man or woman but s/he isn’t responding, either positively or negatively. If you’re prepared to take things further in your pursuit, there is a four-step process you can employ to break down his/her defenses: 1. Break down a man/woman’s defensive gestures by doing the opposite of what s/he is doing (the gesture which would compliment theirs). For example, if she has her arms wrapped defensively across her breasts, he should open his. If his posture is rigid, she should allow her posture to relax. If her face is pinched and her lips drawn in, he should loosen his face and relax his lips.

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2. Physically invade the other person’s territory VERY SLOWLY1 to gradually break down his/her defenses. 3. Visual intrusion: allow the eyes to do the talking for you. Let them sensuously linger on the lips, neck, throat, collarbone or (more carefully), the breasts (places you would like to stroke or kiss). Touching the tongue to the lips and narrowing of the eyes (bedroom eyes) also stirs arousal in the opposite sex. Such tactics can get the attention of a man or a woman without him/her even knowing. 4. Focus your full attention solely on the person of interest. Don’t divide your interest between possible conquests. Every man and woman wants to feel like s/he is the only person on earth. If you make him/her feel singled out, you’ll dramatically up your chances of acceptance. • • • • • • • • How to Create Sexual Attraction Conscious control of body language can assist in making a memorable first impression. There are five nonverbal cues that send off the right sexual attraction signals: 1) the flirting triangle, 2) mirroring, 3) the eyebrow flash, and 4) blinking. The wider the “flirting triangle”, the more sexual interest exists. NEVER mirror negative body language. The eyebrow flash indicates physical interest in every culture. The more body parts facing you, the higher the level of interest. Blinking more often increases your chances of garnering someone’s romantic attention. There are four rules to creating attraction: 1) break down defenses, 2) slowly invade territory, 3) visually intrude, and 4) solely focus attention.

1

And legally!

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DETECTING LIES
Outright or Overt Lying
Lying—it’s something almost everyone does at least once in a lifetime and, for some, it’s a pathological condition. The truth of the matter is, there’s no way to guarantee that people are always telling you the truth. Armed with some basic body language knowledge, however, there is a way to determine if someone is potentially telling you a lie. How to Determine When Someone Is Lying to You Except in the case of the most habitual liar, telling someone an untruth rouses guilt in the offender. It is this guilt that causes her to involuntarily give off signals that indicate she is lying. Some of the most common and obvious of these behaviors follow: Covering the Mouth—Both young children and adults will exhibit this action when they are telling a lie. Subconsciously, it is their way of covering up the fact that they are being untruthful. Sometimes people will try to make this gesture appear more natural by accompanying it with a manufactured cough. Don’t let the sudden scratchy-throat tactic fool you! A faked cough is the offender’s way of masking a lie. By making the untruth unintelligible, the liar is rationalizing her action. In effect, she’s telling herself, “I didn’t actually say it out loud, so I’ve committed no real offense.” Stroking the Nose—If someone gently runs her finger along the side of her nose while speaking to you, chances are, what she is saying is a lie. You can distinguish this behavior from someone who is merely scratching an itchy nose by being mindful of the pressure applied. A scratch is more deliberate while the lying action is more subtle. Closed Palms—Palms open and facing upwards are a traditional sign of honesty. As a result, someone who is lying to you will find it difficult to accompany their falsehoods with such a demeanor. Watch for closed or hidden hands when trying to spot a liar. A liar may place her hands in her lap, behind her back or in her pockets, anywhere where you’ll be unable to see her palms. Lack of Eye Contact—When someone is lying to you, s/he will have an extremely hard time looking you straight in the eye. To avoid direct contact with you, s/he may employ any of a number of tactics, depending on his/her gender. Men tend to rub their eyes energetically while women are more likely to rub the area just below their eyes. Untruthful males have a tendency to look down toward the floor or at their hands while being untruthful. Women, on the other hand, are more likely to stare up at the ceiling. While direct eye contact may be a sign of truthfulness, be on the look out for prolonged contact or heavy staring. The cunning liar may be using this tactic as an overcompensation strategy to try to fool you into thinking s/he is telling the truth.

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Other Visual Cues Eye Movement—This is a trickier gesture to discern and the person’s thought process must always be taken into co-consideration with such movement. Hence, this technique works best when you know the other person well. In general, when your companion looks up and to her right, she is mentally conjuring up an image. That is, she is making up a scenario in her mind, an indication that she is lying. If she looks up and to her left, however, she is recalling an image, a sign that she is probably not lying. Dilated pupils and the resulting excessive blinking may also signal that a person is telling a lie. (Caution – avoid concluding you are being lied to based upon eye movement alone).

Minute Facial Expressions—When someone is lying, she tends to make an unusual face, specifically one that lasts for a shorter length of time than you would expect. In fact, these expressions can be so brief that you might miss them. So, if you suspect someone is lying to you watch her very closely. Facial expression that last more briefly than one second are referred to as micro gestures. Common facial expressions that are signs of untruthfulness include both eyebrows being lifted and/or the forehead wrinkling into a small frown. Increased Sweating—For the average person, lying is an uncomfortable situation. Due to the nervousness it arouses in that person, profuse sweating may

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become an obvious sign of her untruthfulness. Scratching, Blushing, Rubbing or Twitching—Again, nervousness makes such signs of discomfort more likely to occur. If these actions appear in the middle of a conversation, in the absence of any other viable cause, then the person performing them might very well be lying to you.

Words Not Matching Body Language—If a person’s words don't match her other nonverbal cues, you shouldn’t necessarily believe what she is saying. People’s body language naturally coincides with their verbal communication because the body is in synch with the mind. When a person’s verbal and nonverbal cues don’t match, for example, when a person claims to love your new haircut but she frowns while doing so, you can hedge a pretty good bet she’s telling a white lie and just trying to be tactful with you. Since it’s much easier to control our words than it is to control our actions, this conundrum between verbal and nonverbal communication is actually more common than might be expected. Instances in which body language communicates the opposite of what a person is saying verbally is as common as everyday lying. However, observation of only one of the above cues is not enough to determine whether a person is lying. Several of these gestures, in combination, on the other hand, can make a strong case for untruthfulness. Keep in mind though, that a practiced liar will have grown accustomed to covering up these telltale signs of their indiscretion. Also, if you’re the one speaking and you notice your listener performing any of the above gestures, this may be an indication that they think you are lying!

Semi or Covert Lying
Sometimes a person won’t outright lie to you but they will omit crucial details instead. How can you use body language to know when this is occurring? First off, the person may start to say something, realize she shouldn’t have then stammer or backpedal to cover up the slip. She may also exhibit some of the signs of unease mentioned above. Fidgeting or squirming in one’s seat is an indication a person is seeking a way to fill a void that should have been filled with words.

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Children vs. Adults
Age really doesn’t have much of an impact on the body language cues involved in lying. Both children and adults, for example, cover up their mouths when they speak a falsehood. What is different is that as people age, they learn to better cover up the body language actions that give them away. Hence, you will likely have an easier time spotting a young liar as opposed to an older, more practiced one.

Being Used
When someone is using you only to get what she wants, her body language cues may be similar to those of a liar. That’s because she’s being deceptive. She’s likely coddling you into feeling a certain way until she gets what she wants from you. Other things to be on the look out for if you want to know if you’re being used are: • • Excessive nodding in agreement to what you are saying (overcompensating in trying to make you feel at ease with her), or Actions that make you feel as though you are being rushed to move along or make a decision before you are ready to.

In the dating world, this might come in the form of a man pressuring a woman to have sex with him. If he’s genuinely interested, he’ll wait until she’s ready. Forcing the issue is a good sign he won’t be around come morning. The same general rules apply to the backstabber. Someone who is going to tell you one thing then do the opposite will likely display the same behavioral patterns as a “user.”

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Controlling/Covering Up Body Language
This is another deceitful practice, which, while difficult, can be accomplished by the seasoned body language connoisseur. However, because it’s so much more difficult to mask our body language than it is our words, a person is bound to eventually slip up. (This is another reason why the art of body language is best used to express only GENUINE interests and motives) If you think a person’s nonverbal cues are not conveying their actual thoughts, keep an eye on her. For example, if you find that if you’re feeling defensive and notice your legs crossing you may consciously uncross them to make yourself appear more open-minded and less defensive. The problem is, unless you actually start to feel less defensive at the same time, you’ll find this body language ruse difficult to keep. More than likely, a few minutes later you’ll discover that your arms are crossed once again, despite your best effort to avoid it. The fact of the matter is you have 90 muscles in your face, 30 of which are solely for expressing emotions. You also have hundreds of muscles elsewhere in the body, many of which are controlled by subconscious processes. No matter how hard you practice, you’re never going to be able to control all of them indefinitely. Our body language almost always gives us away in the long run.

Body Language as a Mental Health Indicator
Even an experienced mental health diagnostician with full access to a person’s health records and personal examination time with a patient typically finds it extremely difficult to determine with any degree of certainty whether a person is suffering from mental illness and, if so, to what extent and from what causes. As a result, using body language as an indicator of mental health is not recommended and should be left to a medical professional.

Cheating Spouse
Infidelity is the ultimate act of deception. As a result, when a person is having an affair he will likely display all the typical body language cues of a liar. Dr. Robert Huizenga, in his e-book 39

How To Break Free from the Affair!, lists 48 clues that your significant other is cheating on you. Some of those specifically related to body language include: • • • • • • New personal hygiene habits—bathing more often, wearing new cologne Paying more attention to appearance—working out more, dressing better Hiding bills—phone, credit card Refusing to wear wedding ring More or less interest in sex; wanting to try new techniques Less interest in activities around the home

Should you decide to confront your significant other over an affair you suspect is still going on, you can expect one of two body language responses, depending on his state of mind. If he isn’t prepared to admit the affair yet, you’ll note defensive behavior patterns, closing off of the body, refusing to discuss the matter and or denial (where you can watch for the typical body language cues associated with lying). On the other hand, he may be relieved that you’ve finally found out and may open up his body and words to you, admitting the truth.

It’s especially important to bear in mind the limits of body language in this situation – one wouldn’t want to jump to a 100% conclusion, which could have significant and long-lasting life impact, when the interpretation of body language, though very helpful, is still very far from 100% accurate.

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• • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Detecting Lies There’s no way to guarantee someone is always telling the truth. Guilt over untruthfulness reveals itself in the following ways: Covering the mouth, stroking the nose, closing the palms, and lack of eye contact. Covering the mouth is a way of masking a lie The pressure applied determines whether a nose stroke is a way of covering up a lie or merely a means of scratching an itch. Open palms are a traditional sign of honesty. Men tend to rub their eyes, while women are more likely to rub below their eyes, when they lie. Men tend to look at the floor, while women are more likely to stare at the ceiling, when they lie. Looking up and to the right is an indication someone is lying. Dilated pupils are a sign of untruthfulness. Micro gestures that last less than one second can signify untruthfulness. The stress of lying increases sweating. When a person is being truthful, her gestures match her words. You have 90 muscles in your face, 30 of which are solely for expressing emotions. Cheating spouses display the typical body language of a liar.

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READING PEOPLE’S MINDS
Throughout this book we discuss numerous ways in which a person’s body language can help you become more attuned to what they are thinking. To some degree, you can use kinesics to read other people’s minds, but it bears repeating that all body language cues can have multiple meanings. As a result, even careful study and practice of the science won’t give you telepathic superpowers. That said, there are a few ways in which you can use body language to your best advantage when trying to figure out what another person is thinking. Since proper reading of body language is most effective when all cues are taken in combination, you’ll be most assured of what people might be thinking when you observe multiple signals occurring simultaneously, or in multiple places throughout the body. The technical terms for these events, according to ChangingMinds.org are “Synchrony” (for multiple body language cues observable during the exact same moment in time), and “Clustering” (for multiple clues observable throughout the body over a period of time).

Can You Read Minds?
The bottom line is, the more you become familiar with kinesics, the better you will become at guessing what other people are thinking. While it might be a WELL-EDUCATED guess, we must always remember that it is just that, a guess – there are no guarantees. Individual gestures alone are not as telling as those occurring in clusters or in synchrony. You come closest to reading minds when multiple gestures occurring in synchrony or when clusters point to the same conclusion.

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• • • • •

Reading People’s Minds All body language cues can have multiple meanings. Proper reading of body language becomes most effective when all cues are taken in combination. Synchrony refers to multiple body language cues that are observable at the exact same moment in time. Clustering refers to multiple cues that are observable throughout the body over a period of time. There are no guarantees when it comes to reading body language.

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Putting People at Ease, Making Friends & Creating Trust

General Techniques
With practice of and insight into your own body language, you can use the nonverbal cues your body conveys to positively impact others. Let’s now take a closer look at some of the ways in which conscious effort can be used to aid you in getting people to instinctively warm up to you.
MOODS ARE CONTAGIOUS: When you are feeling confident and positive, you will make others around you feel the same way. Because your physical demeanor actually impacts your overall mood, you can use body language to change the way you feel. In other words, if you’re feeling grumpy, indifferent, or insecure in the presence of others, take stock of your body. Stand or sit up straighter, smile and push your shoulders back. Take a deep breath and reevaluate your mood. You naturally feel better, don’t you? Building friendships and gaining trust require that your prospects feel comfortable with you, and the first step is using body language to feel comfortable with yourself! BREATHE SLOWLY AND PEACEFULLY: Make a conscious effort to control your breath. Practice taking deep breaths and experimenting with how variations in your inhalations can assist you in both increasing and slowing down your breathing rate. When you gain control over your breathing, you gain control over your entire state of mind. You not only reduce your stress and elevate your mood, but believe it or not your breathing also positively impacts others. People naturally want to be around someone who is calm, cool and collected – and this is demonstrated in the breath. Breathing slowly and peacefully in the company of others can quickly put them at ease. TAKE CONTROL: When you find yourself in a new situation with no experience to draw on, allow your body to act as if you do anyway. Your mind will soon follow suit and so will your audience. Here’s how: MAINTAIN GOOD EYE CONTACT: Good eye contact shows not only that you are interested in your prospects but also that you believe what you are saying. If you believe what you’re saying, your audience will too!

KEEP YOUR BODY OPEN AND INVITING. Do not cross your arms or legs. Also turn your body fully toward your audience. If you don’t face your audience, they will think you have something to hide, which will prohibit their confidence and respect in you. DON’T FIDGET OR ENGAGE IN NERVOUS HABITS, like twirling the hair, tapping your feet or biting your nails. If your prospects suspect you are anxious about the situation

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they will naturally lack confidence in you. Since you’re striving for the exact opposite reaction from them, you must set aside your bad habits. SMILE: Nothing makes a better first impression and sets people at ease more than a genuine smile. Note some things to yourself which you actually like about the person you are trying to put at ease. This gives you the psychological fuel to offer a genuine smile.

MAINTAIN PROPER POSTURE. Stand with your shoulders back and your spine straight. If you’re slouching, your prospects will be inclined to think you don’t believe what you are saying. As a result, they will lack confidence in you. MIRROR AND MATCH: This technique is mentioned throughout this book. That’s because when perfected, mirroring of others’ body language can help you to influence them in most any situation. When you effectively apply this strategy, you can evoke romantic interest, influence, close a sale, gain a friend, elicit trust, the possibilities are virtually endless. As a result, mirroring is a vital step in getting others to warm up to you. So how do you go about effectively putting this technique into practice? Be observant! Watch what your prospect is doing with her own body and match her positioning with your own. Raise or lower yourself to her level. Match your speaking rate with the speed of hers. Copy her positive body language in posture and demeanor. The aim is to make her feel comfortable in your presence. (Avoid copying very negative body language though – this will backfire). Once you have achieved a level of rapport, you can begin to change your body posture to one which reflects the outcome you hope to achieve from your prospect. For example, if your prospect started with somewhat rigid body posture and you mirrored it (in a less pronounced way), once you feel ‘in sync’ with her, you can start to ‘open up’ your posture and she should follow along. This technique is very effective for making your prospect to feel good not only about herself, but also about being with you. (The power to influence increases dramatically when a prospect feels better about herself in your presence). When properly executed, you can bring people around to your way of thinking without them even knowing it! PRACTICE: Make use of a mirror and practice your body language in front of it. While it might feel foolish at first, practicing your nonverbal cues ahead of time will necessarily force them to come more naturally when the situation demands. Over time, your mind and body will become conditioned to adopt these inviting postures and gestures. This strategy is particularly helpful if it’s done while you are in the process of dealing with others (i.e., watch yourself while you are on the phone with someone and trying to persuade her). Glance at yourself while you push the sale or when you are in the presence of others you are trying to influence. The goal is to draw others to you, to make them want to be with you, to be like you or to do what you want them to do.

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KEEP YOUR BODY TONED: When your body is at peak performance, it only stands to reason that you will be better able to put it to use in conveying the nonverbal cues you hope to. As such, regular physical exercise will not only go a long way toward elevating your own selfesteem but it will also increase your chances of influencing others. A well toned physique, held in a comfortable posture, puts others at ease on a very primitive level. People tend to feel more comfortable around someone who is ‘in shape’ because they are more likely to be able to assist in an emergency. Of course, in today’s modern society such emergencies are very few and far between (we’re not often being chased by tigers anymore), but only our higher brains realize this. Reactions to body language come on a very primitive level, not usually subject to intellectual reasoning – so primitive signals count! Being around someone in good shape also makes people feel ‘successful’ on a primitive level. (Not everyone got to associate with such people in our primitive tribes – so deep inside it still feels like a ‘privilege’).

But don’t expect that making others like you will come easily. Like all good things in life, building friendships and trust requires hard work. If you demand and expect more from your body language, your mind automatically follows suit. And that morale boost spreads to others in your presence. Over time, you will begin to see others feeling better about themselves when they are around you. And that, after all, is the real secret to creating lasting friendships and building trust. • • • • • • • Putting People at Ease, Making Friends & Creating Trust Body language can be used to positively impact others. Your mood is contagious and your demeanor can impact your mood Breathing slowly and peacefully when in the presence of others helps put them at ease. Your mind can be used to control your body. If you want your prospects to warm up to you, mirror and match their body language with your own. Practice your body language in front of a mirror. A well-toned body will enable you to best convey the nonverbal cues you hope to.

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Building Trust and Erecting Friendships
All of the techniques above are wonderful starting points in building trust and establishing friendships with your prospects. The following are some more specific strategies which will help you create a common bond with your audience.

MATCH YOUR BODY LANGUAGE TO YOUR WORDS!: Always make sure the cues your body gives off match the message your words wish to convey. For example, underline the truthfulness of your words by nodding your head in agreement with what you are saying and look your counterpart straight in the eye. If you’re trying to convey compassion, consider reaching out your hand to touch the other person on the shoulder or arm (if it is appropriate for the situation). SHOW GENUINE FASCINATION WHEN OTHERS ARE TALKING: The trick to this is knowing that you really CAN learn something from everyone at every moment they are speaking. Listen carefully, nodding your head to encourage them to continue speaking. Turn your body to fully face the person speaking so that she knows you are interested in her words. Use hand gestures for emphasis in your responses. Of course, maintain frequent eye contact. This shows that your attention is fully on your counterpart and not shifting elsewhere throughout the room.

While it’s true that in some cases you can recognize a new friendship almost instantaneously, do not make the mistake of ruling out a potential friendship based solely on initial body language cues. Some people are just naturally shy, rigid and reserved around people they don’t know. If you find yourself in such a situation, use the mirroring/matching techniques described earlier in this chapter to try to bring her around. • • Building Trust and Erecting Friendships Matching your body language with your words helps you create a common bond with your audience. Always show genuine interest in people with whom you want to establish a relationship.

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Doctor/Patient Kinesics
Doctors, Nurses, and other authorities or people in the helping professions, stand to gain a lot by learning to put their patients at ease with body language. The four main patient postures a doctor will encounter in her patients are as follows:
Open posture, leaning forward—an indication that the patient is responsive to and accepting of what the doctor is telling her. Open posture, leaning back—an indication that she is evaluating the information the doctor has given her. An intuitive doctor will give her time to reflect upon and digest the knowledge with which he has just presented her. Closed posture, leaning forward—an indication that the patient isn’t paying attention to what the doctor is saying. She’s either skeptical about or angry over his diagnosis. This is referred to as the combative posture and a good doctor will need to seek other tactics to overcome the unresponsiveness. Closed posture, leaning back—an indication that the patient wants to flee the situation altogether. This is the posture a doctor least wants to see because it’s the hardest to overcome. A totally different approach needs to be employed because not only is the patient not paying attention to what she’s being told but she’s ready to take flight at the first available opportunity. She wants out of the situation altogether.

To overcome these closed postures, a doctor needs to reassure his patients. To allay their fears he should first speak softly, calmly and slowly. He should employ an open posture and lean forward (remembering that the goal is to gradually bring the patient around to his way of thinking). Throughout it all, the doctor should always maintain level and focused eye contact with his patient and address her concerns. He should NOT, however, invade her personal space. As a general rule, if at all possible, a doctor should maintain at least three feet of distance with the combative or potentially fleeing patient.

These same strategies work well when a doctor must deliver bad or difficult news to a patient and her family. Doctors should also familiarize themselves with the cultural differences in body language as they are likely to encounter patients from a wide variety of backgrounds. Particular attention should be paid to whether the patient comes from a “contact” culture versus a “non-contact” culture.

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Rejection vs. Acceptance
How can you determine if someone is accepting or rejecting your attempts at friendliness? Watch for the following cues.

Rejection
• • • Touching or rubbing the nose Crossing the arms and legs Rubbing the hands or tugging at the ear

Acceptance
• • Moving in closer to you Spreading hands that are held to the chest

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SELLING AND INFLUENCING
We’ve already debunked the 55/38/7 rule as a generalization, but its percentages actually do come fairly close to the degree to which various forms of communication play into the selling and influencing process. In fact, some current sales studies lay claim to the fact that a whopping 70% of your prospect’s first impression of you comes from your body language and image. What’s even more startling is the fact that she forms her opinion of you within seconds of greeting you. When the notion that you can give off up to 10,000 body cues within the first minute of interaction is factored into the equation, it becomes rather obvious that you need to be very conscious of the nonverbal cues your body is sending off if you even hope to make the sale or convince your audience. In order to tell if you are making a good impression on your prospects, you should be on the look out for certain nonverbal signs of initial influence:
Maintaining eye contact with you Turning their bodies to face you Nodding their head in agreement to something you are saying

Increasing the Probability of a Sale
There are several ways in which you can use body language to your advantage within the first few moments of contact with a potential buyer to help you close a sale: 1. Stand up when greeting someone. Not only will it put you in the leadership role but it will also make you seem like an authority figure. Your prospects, in turn, will be more likely to give you their attention and respect.

2. Study your prospects’ formality and energy level and match them with your own. In so doing, you will make yourself appear as less of a stranger and more of a friend. Hence,

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your prospects will feel more comfortable and open with you. It will also make them think you share something in common with them. People always prefer doing business with someone in whom they have a point of commonality. This tactic falls under the body language concept of mirroring, which has been discussed in greater detail earlier in this book. 3. Put forth a strong and effective handshake. This is something you should practice so that you have the technique down pat. Smile as you extend your arm to show confidence. Open your palm completely and place your palm in full contact with your prospect’s. This helps to build an initial level of trust. Pump her hand up and down 3-5 times in a corporate culture (fewer in less formal situations). Do not engage in a wrestling contest or squeeze so hard as to create pain. Match the pressure of your grip to your prospect’s exertion. 4. Convey an open and relaxed attitude – avoid all signals of tension. Crossed arms and legs, a rigid posture, a blank face, an averted gaze and a body that it turned away will all cause her to instinctively close up and you’ll lose the sale. Even when your prospects start bombarding you with hard questions, keep your arms and legs uncrossed and resist shrinking inward. An open body exudes that you have nothing to hide and a relaxed posture will make you feel less tense. Of course, you must always offer a welcoming and genuine smile. 5. Allow your body language to match your words. Part of the silent sell is saying it like you mean it – using the appropriate gestures and ensuring that your nonverbal cues match your message. For example, make use of hand gestures. Slap your open hand on the desk or table gently to hammer home a point (or more assertively if you think it’s necessary – but be sure that the level of pressure you exert is appropriate for the situation). Nod in agreement to your prospect’s concerns then counter them with appropriate responses that will shift her way of thinking.

6. Move closer. Move in close to your prospect to develop greater intimacy with her and to force her to pay better attention to you. Do this gradually so as not to make your prospect feel uncomfortable. Remember the general rule of thumb that individuals need a one-anda-half- to two-foot personal distance space before they start feeling closed in on and threatened. Watch out for signs like rocking, leaning away or diverting the eyes, which indicate that you are invading your prospect’s personal space. (It’s best if you learn to 51

move at a pace which entirely avoids eliciting such signals). 7. Keep your hands in a neutral position. Bringing them up to cover your mouth is an indication that you are lying. Gestures to emphasize a point are fine, but don’t fall into the annoying trap of repeating them over and over again. This will only make your prospect feel uncomfortable with you. Avoid pointing, which comes across as threatening to your prospect.
If you’re standing up, you can let your hands just hang by your side. (They won’t fall off – I promise!)

8. Use leaning to your advantage.
Lean in to indicate genuine interest in what your prospect is saying. This shows your prospect that you really believe in what she is saying.

Lean back when YOU are making points you wish to be taken with authority. Leaning back drives home the point that what you are saying is of extreme importance, and positions you as someone with knowledge and power. Maintain a neutral posture - when it comes to talking price and closing the deal. Leaning in can be too threatening at this time, while leaning back may indicate you’re retreating and not really interested in having this person as a customer. This might cause your prospect to haggle over the price or turn you down altogether.

9. Allow brief silences. Don’t fill up brief silences with unnecessary chatter. Allow your prospects time to think of questions and to debate their final decision. In the latter case, silence may make them feel awkward and they might make it a “done deal” to alleviate that discomfort. This might seem like a deceitful used-car-salesman tactic, but it often works. 10. Make a lasting impression. Just as you conveyed confidence in your greeting, you should stand up straight, give a firm handshake and maintain eye contact when you walk away from the deal. You will leave your prospects with the impression that you are confident and straightforward, which will make them more likely to want to deal with you again. 52

In a nutshell, these 10 body language tips can supercharge your ability to close a sale or influence an audience to take your position. With continued practice they will give you a firm foundation in all your negotiations!

Neutralizing Angry Customers
Most proprietors don’t realize that before a customer becomes so dissatisfied that they bring you harsh words in an angry tone of voice, there are several body language cues which indicate escalating displeasure. Learn to recognize them and you can neutralize the problem before it gets out of hand, and turn a potential lost client into a repeat customer.

Look for a progressively more ‘in your face’ posture:
Overly prolonged eye contact. (In contrast to positive eye contact, aggressive eye contact is ‘unrelenting’ – the customer will NOT provide the normal momentary glances away which allows for each party to briefly collect their thoughts) Invasive distance closing. (While distance closing is a sign of intimacy when accompanied by other positive gestures and verbal content, in the context of an unhappy customer it indicates escalating tension).

In order to make sure she gets what is owed her, the angry customer will take on an “in your face” posture – she will stare you down and close distance so as to make you feel uncomfortable and more likely to give in to her demands. (She wants to be sure she gets what is owed to her). In such situations, the best solution is to avoid countering her moves and just attempt to be understanding (after all, we’ve all been dissatisfied customers at one time or another). Stop everything else and act interested. Carefully listen to what she has to say. Continue to stand straight, smile, and find out exactly what she feels is owed to her. (Avoid mirroring your counterpart). Taking on a relaxed demeanor will actually aid in calming your irate customer down. Keep your body open (no crossing of limbs allowed), lean in a bit toward her and look her in the eye. This will convey interest in her point of view and sincerity in your concern for her situation, as well as making it clear that you are not trying to hide anything or ‘get over’ on her.

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Nervousness
Putting your prospect at ease is always your first priority if you are to persuade her to buy. A nervous person is uncomfortable in your presence and you will want to eliminate that agitated state before progressing with your sales and/or influencing tactics. While we’ve already covered techniques for putting people at ease above in detail, what we haven’t discussed are the myriad of ways you can tell WHEN your prospect is nervous (so you know when to go into action!) According to an article entitled “Winning the Body Language Game” on CollegeGrad.com, the following behaviors are some signs that your prospect is feeling nervous in your presence:
smoking whistling pinching skin fidgeting jiggling pocket contents running tongue along front of teeth clearing throat hands touching the face or covering part of the face pulling at skin or ear running fingers through hair wringing hands biting on pens or other objects twiddling thumbs biting fingernails (action itself or evidence of) tongue clicking.

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Look additionally for an unsteady tone of voice, irregularities in the rhythm of speech, sweating, and even unpleasant bodily odors. • • • • Selling and Influencing Some current sales studies claim that 70% of your prospects’ first impression of you comes from your body language. You give off 10,000 body cues in the first minute of interaction. Signs of initial influence include good eye contact, body facing your and nodding of the head in agreement. To help close a sale, stand up, match your energy level with your prospect’s, employ a firm handshake, convey an open attitude, mach your words with your body language, move in closer, keep your hands neutral, lean in for effectiveness, allow brief silences and leave a lasting impression. To neutralize an angry customer, listen to what she has to say and relax your demeanor. Overcoming your prospect’s nervousness and putting her at ease is key to persuasion.

• •

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Commanding Respect and Power All of the tools and techniques discussed in the last two chapters (influencing people and putting them at ease) are, de facto, prerequisites for commanding respect and power. But there is one more VERY important tool which you can sometimes use when you want to really position yourself as an authority … height and distance. Putting height and distance between you and your audience, be it one person or thousands, is a very real way of placing yourself in a position of authority. Think, for example, of the judge who sits high above and away from the rest of the court participants and who has the final say in such proceedings. Or of the emperor who speaks to ‘his people’ from high atop a balcony overlooking the square. Or of how office placement indicates authority in corporate America, where those in the highest position have high-level window offices while those in lower positions occupy windowless cubicles on the lower floors of the building. Of course, you don’t always have control over how much height and distance is between you and your audience, but when you do, it can be very powerful.
For example, if you are giving a speech, moving your lectern back a few feet, and standing on a small pedestal may give you an extra ‘edge’ of authority.

In your own office, you can arrange your desk and chair to be raised slightly on a platform So too, a wide desk that places your audience at a great physical distance from you places you in a greater position of authority. Even in situations where you don’t have the luxury of manipulating your environment, just standing tall and straight in the presence of your audience gives off the air that you are “the leader of the pack.”

Now, bear in mind that commanding respect and authority is, at times, at odds with putting people at ease or getting them to open up. So you will have to choose your goals differently in different situations. (Sometimes it’s best to work to command respect and authority when creating first impressions, and then later to relinquish some of this in favor of a more intimate and relaxed atmosphere. This combination can be a very powerful way of bonding someone to you and then persuading them.)

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At times, you may also want to REDUCE your respect and authority – for example, if you are concerned about being lied to. (People who are lying are usually most guarded around ‘authorities’). In such cases, you will actually want to gradually decrease the distance between you and your subordinate as a means of getting them to let down their guard. (This tactic is often employed by police officers in getting uncooperative witnesses to talk).

A “Textbook” Example
Perhaps nowhere else is the ability to command respect so essential as in a classroom setting. If a teacher can’t command the respect of her students, then chaos reigns and learning goes by the wayside. As such, the classroom is a perfect laboratory for us to illustrate how to command respect and authority. Speakers and trainers can use these same techniques to command the attention of their audiences.
Minimize Your Gestures On Entry – audience members perceive people’s status in inverse proportion to the number of gestures they express as they enter. The less you move about at first, the more powerful will be your impression. (This is particularly important for women, who by nature exhibit almost three times as many gestures as men!) The Eyes Have It—Make eye contact with your students (audience) as often as possible. As you change subjects or sentences, shift your gaze to another student. This will show your interest in all members of your audience. It also lets them know you aren’t playing favorites. Avoid excessive blinking; doing so gives you the appearance of having too much control over the situation. Stand Up Straight—Seems Mom knew what she was talking about when she lectured you on proper posture. A straight back and level shoulders lend an air of authority. Always keep your feet firmly planted on the floor and face your students (audience) whenever possible. When dealing with students one-on-one at their desk or computer, try to meet them at their level. In so doing, you will gain their trust and bolster their confidence.

Best Face Forward—When you walk into a room, act like you own it (even if you’re shaking like a leaf inside). Lace your face with a large smile, keeping in mind that a smile is contagious.

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Finally, remember that as with all body language, these techniques will take a while to master. You can’t command instant respect but you can gradually build a sense of trust with your students/audience. Once you have done so, word of mouth will spread that respect beyond a single classroom.

Are You Making A Good Impression?
How can you use your audience’s body language to determine whether you are making a good impression? In her online presentation, “Body Language: Making a Fantastic First Impression,” author Roberta F. Hill offers four keys to success. Her formula is as follows: Entrance + Enthusiasm + Engagement + Energy = Success. Drawing from this formula you can determine if you are making a good impression if your audience is receptive to your entrance (they sit down and stop talking), they greet you with enthusiasm and show interest in what you are saying (face you, nod in agreement, point their hands and feet mostly in your direction), you command their attention throughout your presentation and they express energetic interest in learning more. • • • Commanding Respect and Power Height and distance give you an authoritative edge. To command the attention of your audience, minimize your initial gestures, maintain good eye contact, stand up straight and act in control. The formula for making a good impression is: Entrance + Enthusiasm + Engagement + Energy = Success.

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On the Job Interview
Hill’s presentation goes on to outline the steps a person can take to make a winning first impression. These include: The Costume, Smile, Eye Contact and Handshake, all of which a job applicant should pay special attention to when interviewing. The Costume includes such things as personal hygiene and manner of dress, which should be well-pressed but understated with minimal accessories. The smile should be sincere but relaxed. Eye contact should be steady and held for at least five seconds. The handshake should be full and firm without crushing the interviewer’s hand.

Confidence
The key to commanding respect and power lies in your confidence level. If you want to gauge your current level of confidence, try taking this online Confidence Check quiz: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/onelife/fun/personal/confidence/check/index.shtml. You’ll find your overall score interesting, but also pay particular attention to each question as you take the quiz for specific areas in which you may personally need a confidence overhaul. Once you’ve evaluated yourself and identified areas for improvement, please revisit the Commanding Respect chapter of this book.
Please note – the above confidence link is external to our site and was valid as of June 2004. If the link is removed, please type ‘self confidence test’ into Google and search the resulting links.

Dominance vs. Submission
You’ve probably heard of the alpha male in a pack of wolves, but what you might not know is that the behaviors displayed in a hierarchical dog pack also extend into human behavior, particularly in the corporate world. In a business setting, some signs of domination include palms facing down, displaying of the thumbs (while the other fingers may be hidden in the pocket) and an upright posture. You can 59

use these body language tactics to your advantage when attempting to command respect and power.

Negative vs. Positive Body Language
Obviously if you are trying to command someone’s respect you’ll want to concentrate on positive body language. Here’s a little more detail on how to recognize positive vs. negative body language:

Positive Body Language:
relaxed posture uncrossed arms good eye contact nodding in agreement smiling leaning in open palms friendly gestures.

Negative Body Language:
tense posture crossed arms poor eye contact shaking the head in disagreement fidgeting scowling arms behind head leaning away closed palms.

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There is no way you can control ALL of the muscles in your body, but being consistently aware of potential negative cues is enough to reduce their frequency and make a strong difference in how you are perceived.

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BODY PART SPECIFICS
To this point, our book has been organized by personal goals you may wish to achieve using body language. We had a section on how to detect lies, a section on how to tell if someone is romantically interested, a section on seduction, a section on commanding respect and power, a section on selling, etc. But, many readers have asked us for a reference chapter – a kind of ‘encyclopedia of body language’ where they can look up meanings associated with specific body parts, postures, and gestures. That’s what this chapter is about! Let’s now examine the role specific body parts play in the science of kinesics.

Eyes
The eyes have been dubbed “the window to the soul”. The eyes may not say it ALL (you still have to consider the totality of the communication including all other body parts, posture, words, and tone of voice) – but they do say a LOT! In the following paragraphs, we’ll take a closer look at the overall impact the eyes can have in the science of kinesics.

The Gaze or Stare
Let’s first examine the intensity of the stare as it relates to body language. How hard someone is staring at you can tell you a lot about what they are thinking.
The Sideways Glance: This gesture is one of the first signals of romantic interest. Because it is subtle and sly, it allows an individual to flirt without being obvious. While the interested woman may boldly stare at her intended, she will demurely lower her head and tilt it away from his. In so doing, she can veil her brazen move under the cover of shyness.

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The Prolonged Glance: A more overt gesture than the aforementioned, the lingering gaze has no pretense of coyness. This is an indication of someone who wants to get right down to business. As a result, the prolonged glance indicates sexual attraction and pure lust. For the less brazen, but still sexually interested person, such eye contact may be intermittent but repetitive, with momentary looks away and returns. If the lingering occurs midway through a conversation, however, rather than during an introduction, it more likely indicates interest in the conversation. The Hard Stare: Often accompanied by hooded lids and constricted pupils, the hard stare is typified by the movie villain. Such a penetrating gaze signals that the individual possesses an invasive, aggressive or threatening mood.

Note that the hard stare is distinguished from the prolonged glance in that, during the amorous or lustful prolonged glance, the glancer provides periodic brief breaks from the lingering, whereas the hard stare just does not let up! The Up-and-Down Gaze: Often referred to as the “once-over,” this eye movement is often seen in men on the sexual prowl. When a man looks a woman up and down, he is apprising her as a potential bed partner. If he performs this gesture more than once, chances are he likes what he sees in a physical sense and his sensual imagination may be running away with him. Women are also prone to the ‘once over’, but are usually more polite about it and are less likely to get caught! The Even Gaze: If an individual meets you in the eye, without holding the glance for too long, you can generally assume that no romantic ploys are involved and that (s)he is just being generally inviting. The Averted Gaze: This is a strong indication that your counterpart is being deceitful. She may either be outright lying or she may simply be feeling guilty about what is being discussed. Eye rubbing, as an excuse to look away, may also indicate untruthfulness (for further discussion on this topic, refer to the next chapter). However, looking away IN RESPONSE to an overly long gaze should not be interpreted as deceit, but rather just an effort to reduce intimacy. The Closed Eyes: This is not the same thing as a blink, but rather a prolonged closing of the eye that is visually perceptible to the viewer. If you see your counterpart performing this gesture, it’s a good indication she doesn’t want to hear any more about what you are discussing. This signal is often accompanied by raised eyebrows. The Upward Rolling Eyes: Often seen when someone disagrees with what you have said or can’t believe you are speaking the words you are. Rolling eyes are indicative of exasperation.

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How To Comfortably Maintain Eye Contact
Throughout this book we have emphasized the importance of good eye contact for putting people at ease, making a strong impression, influencing people, and commanding respect and authority. Yet many people become uncomfortable when attempting to maintain good eye contact, and it deteriorates into something that either looks like a prolonged gaze, a hard stare, or a deceitful aversion. But eye contact can be made a whole lot easier with one critical tip – look at the person’s whole face above the top of the nose!

To Prolong Your Comfort With Eye Contact, Scan The Person’s Whole Face Above The Tip Of The Nose! When the direct eye to eye contact becomes uncomfortable for you (or when you sense it is becoming uncomfortable for your partner), allow yourself to scan the bridge of their nose, their cheek bones, their foreheads, their hair (above the nose tip). Have fun with this and enjoy the person’s face as you might enjoy exploring a piece of art. On a person’s face is often written the story of their life – take the time to read that story! (Just don’t mention anything about it verbally). The reason this works so well is that it can give you the necessary ‘break time’ from direct eye to eye contact, but it turns out that if you stay above the tip of the nose and don’t dart about too quickly, the person you are looking at will actually PERCEIVE you to be continually giving them non-threatening, prolonged eye contact. Be careful not to move below the nose however, as lingering on the mouth begins to directly signal sexual interest. (Unless this is your intention, of course).

The Eyebrows
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Both Eyebrows Raised: In a social situation, if you see someone gazing at you with her eyebrows raised, it is an indication that she is interested in you and wants to meet you. One Eyebrow Raised: This action is an indication of skepticism. While engaged in a conversation, if your counterpart raises only one eyebrow while leaving the other lowered, it is an indication that he doesn’t quite believe what you’re telling him.

Knitted Eyebrows: This is the proverbial “worried” facial expression in which both eyebrows come together in the middle of the forehead to create a furrow. Knitted brows are a sign of deep emotional stress. They can indicate that the individual is acutely anxious, suffering painfully, laden with fear, racked with anger or any combination thereof. The above refers to unconscious knitting of the eyebrows. When eyebrows are briefly knit on purpose, it is usually an indication of puzzlement or intrigue – and suggests that the listener would like to hear more.

The Wink:
When you don’t know someone, a wink is a flirtatious act of intimacy, an “I’d like to get to know you better” gesture, if you will. However, you will also see winking occur between two individuals who know each other well, but have no romantic interest in each other (best friends, parent/child, etc.). In such instances, a wink is merely a signal that the winker feels completely at ease with the wink recipient. A wink between friends is often a sign of a “private joke,” that only those two people share. In a professional setting, a wink is usually an inappropriate gesture, as it either excludes others from your sphere of concern (a private joke), or suggests an intimate or sexual connection.

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The Squint
Squinting when listening is an indication of strong interest in what the speaker is saying. If you notice someone squinting while you are speaking, don’t be surprised if you are bombarded with questions when you finish.

Looking Away
If you sense someone’s eyes on you and turn toward them, only to find them looking away, it’s usually a sign of shyness. Perhaps (s)he was romantically interested in you but too timid to let you know – but it could also just be a sign of interest in whatever activity/situation you are engaged in. Naturally curious people tend to look away when you catch them staring because they don’t want to come off as busybodies, even though that’s exactly what they might be! If you think someone who frequently looks away when you catch her eye might be attracted to you and want to know for sure, be on the lookout for accompanying signs of physical attraction as covered in a previous chapter of this book. Naturally curious people tend to look away when you catch them staring because they don’t want to come off as busybodies, even though that’s exactly what they might be! If you think someone who frequently looks away when you catch her eye might be attracted to you and want to know for sure, be on the look out for accompanying signs of physical attraction as covered in a previous chapter of this book.

Looking Left
If, during a conversation, your partner’s gaze shifts to the left while you are speaking, it is an indication that she is deep in thought regarding what you are saying. If she looks left while she is speaking it is a sign that her words are truthful. Obviously, the opposite also holds true. If she looks right while speaking she might be, but is not definitely, lying (more on this in the Detecting Lies section of this book).

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Wet Eyes
Wet eyes, when not the result of crying, are usually the result of excessive blinking. This can signal one of two things:
Romantic Interest. Recall that the pupils dilate upon sensual arousal, and dilated pupils increase the need for blinking That the person may be lying. The stressfulness of speaking an untruth often causes a person to blink excessively, thereby wetting the eyes.

Please review both the “detecting romantic interest” and “detecting lies” sections of this book for more information on distinguishing the two.

Constricted Pupils
Assuming an environment where the light does not change (the amount of light in a room is the strongest determinant of the size of the pupils), enlarged pupils indicate satisfaction or romantic interest. The opposite is also true … pupils that are decreased in size are an indication of discontentment, and the size degree of constriction is inversely proportional to the degree of dissatisfaction. So if you notice your counterpart’s pupils reducing to the sign of pinheads, watch out!

Widened Pupils & Widened Eyes
Both the pupils and the eyes widen in response to seeing something pleasant (to “let more light in” so the pleasant object can be more fully experienced). This can give you the edge in certain situations, like a poker game, where you can guess how good your opponent’s hand is by watching for this telltale sign. In sexual matters, it’s interesting to note that studies show a man’s pupil doubles in size when he looks at a nude picture of a woman. This reinforces the notion that dilated pupils and sexual arousal go hand-in-hand.

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Facial Expressions
The face we convey to the world rarely gives a full picture of what we are really thinking and feeling. Think of the number of times you have forced yourself to smile simply because the situation warranted it. In fact, smiling is so expected that it has become an almost unreadable expression. Today, a smile is just one of the many masks we wear to cover up our real emotions and thoughts.
While a smile is NOT an extremely accurate indicator of how others really feel, people’s REACTIONS to a smile ARE reasonably predictable … thus the repeated emphasis in various sections throughout the book on smiling genuinely when you are trying to influence, persuade, put people at ease, or seduce. It’s also important that you know that smiles are more of a culturally learned phenomenon than a natural biological function. Young infants don’t smile very much until they are conditioned to do so by their caregivers. We LEARN to smile as an indication of our willingness to engage with others -- right from the beginning of life!

While we CAN prevent our thoughts and feelings from showing on our faces, we cannot always cover up our bodies’ other involuntary cues. For example, no matter how hard you might smile, your body’s perspiration or your trembling hand betrays your nervousness. Let’s examine some of the more common facial expressions, starting first with the three types of general smiles then moving into other expressions, to get a better feel for the many stories the face can tell.
SMILES

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The Forced Smile: So how exactly can you tell when someone is faking a smile? The truth of the matter is, you can’t always do so. Smiling has become so expected and practiced that some people’s false smiles look almost identical to their genuine ones. However, a genuine smile will usually spread all the way across the face and on up into the eyes. If the face and the eyes are not used as part of the smile, there’s a good bet that it is forced. The Closed-Lip Smile: A variation on the forced smile, this type of grin is a courtesy gesture. You will see this type of smile employed when a person doesn’t necessarily feel like smiling but does so anyway as a means of being polite. The exception to this is for people who are embarrassed about the color of their teeth. Such people may have learned to smile with closed lips, even when the smile is genuine. (For this reason, the involvement of the face and the eyes trumps the closed-lip rule!) The Open Smile: This type of smile, in which the upper teeth are exposed, is usually genuine. When seen in a social situation, it is an indication that the person you’re associating with wants to get better acquainted with you. This is another gesture you can use to your own advantage. When you want to let someone know you are interested in him/her, flash an open and inviting smile.

Grimace: We all know the old McDonald’s character who goes by this name. He’s the grumpy monster who doesn’t want anyone touching his milkshakes or fries. Well, it’s likely his disposition that earned him his name. In body language, the grimace is an exaggerated frown in which the corners of the lips are pulled back into a sneer, exposing the teeth in the process. A grimace is indicative of extreme pain, contempt or disgust. If you see someone grimacing at you, chances are they are not pleased with you.
COVERING THE FACE:

If you witness a person do this while you are talking to them it’s a sign that what you have just said has shocked her. In such instances, it’s a way of distancing the person from the offending situation. On the other hand, a person who covers up her face or mouth with her hand while speaking may very well be uttering an untruth (more on this in the How to Detect a Liar chapter of this book).
LIPS

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While the lips play a part in all of the facial expressions outlined above, they can also play a role in kinesics in and of themselves. Of course, taken in combination with what the rest of a person’s facial features are conveying, they will be more accurate, but for edification’s sake let’s now focus solely on the lips.
Puckered Lips: The typical prelude to a kiss, this gesture is just that: a sign of romantic or sexual attraction. Unless the person has just tasted something sour, puckered lips are a good indication that someone would like to kiss you.

Pursed Lips: In combination with the furrowed brow, pursed lips are a very good indication that the individual is fraught with stress or worry. Pursed lips indicate tension and/or disapproval of the situation. Swished Lips: If you are engaged in a conversation with someone and you notice her swishing her lips, chances are she’s thinking carefully about what you are saying. She might also be weighing her response to you. When a person performs this gesture often, it’s a sign that her overall personality is to think before speaking or acting. Bite Lip: Lip biting is a nervous habit but it can also be an indication of anger. We’ve all heard the saying, “bite your tongue” in reference to holding back your temper. Well, in kinesics, that saying can extend to the lips. In combination with a strong negative head shake, a bitten lip is a good sign that a person is not at all pleased with you. If you see these simultaneous gestures, don’t be surprised if you soon find yourself being lashed with harsh words. Touched Lip: When someone touches her lips it can mean one of two things, depending on the placement of the forefinger. When an individual vertically brings her forefinger to the lips in the proverbial librarian manner, it signals silence. In effect, this person is saying “Shhh!” On the other hand, if her mouth is slightly agape and she brings her forefinger to touch only her lower lip, it’s an indication she wants to talk to you.

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COUGHING:

Coughing can signify one of two things, depending on the circumstance. If it is done repeatedly over the course of a period of time, it’s usually just a sign that the individual is nervous. If, however, a person coughs mid-sentence, it might be an indication that what she is saying is untruthful. The cough, in effect, becomes a way for her to cover up her lie (for more on this, please refer to the How to Detect a Liar chapter of this book).

Hair
Though twirling the hair around one’s finger can be a sign of nervousness, touching the hair is more usually a seductive gesture. If a man is talking with a woman and she continuously touches her hair it can signify one of two things: 1) If she touches her hair with both hands, she’s probably self-conscious about her appearance. 2) If she touches her hair with one hand, usually in a stroking motion, she’s being flirtatious, using her femininity to her best advantage.

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Either way, chances are she’s interested in her counterpart and cares very much what he thinks about her. When a man plays with a woman’s hair, he’s boldly displaying his affection for her. Either he’s already intimate with her or he wants to make it clear he would like to be intimate with her. When he touches his own hair in the presence of a woman, he’s preening, as previously discussed. Here again, he’s expressing his romantic interest in the woman. One instance in which hair touching is not a flirtatious gesture is when the fingers are quickly run through the hair. In such an instance, the individual is hedging because she doesn’t know what to say or do next. Touching another individual anywhere other than the hair can indicate romantic interest or it can be an expression of genuine care and concern for her. Repeated touching or stroking of inanimate objects, such as a scarf, a purse or even a piece of furniture, can often be interpreted as a cry for understanding.

Legs
Moving down to the lower part of the body, let’s examine first how a person’s GAIT can be reflective of her overall mood.
If a person walks with a lively and bouncy step, she is exhibiting enthusiasm. An upright posture with head erect is an indication of confidence and self-assurance A stooped posture and lowered head is a sign the person is dejected or lacking self-confidence. Finally, the swagger (in a man) or the swishing hip walk (in a woman) is part of the seductive game play.

Gait, however, isn’t the only way the legs can convey meaning. The way a person crosses his/her legs is also very telling:
One Leg Crossed Over at the Knee: This sitting posture is equally employed by both men and women. It indicates that the person is at ease with the situation and relaxed in the company’s presence. One Ankle Crossed Over the Knee: This sitting posture is normally employed by men. While still an indication that he is relaxed, it signifies that he is airing his assertiveness. This sitting pose is sometimes referred to as the “cowboy’s leg cross.” Legs Crossed at the Ankle: This sitting posture, also employed more frequently by men, is seen more often in formal situations. It is an indication that the individual is politely relaxed. The Leg Twine: This sitting posture is more frequently seen in females. In fact, most men find this pose extremely difficult, even impossible, to perform. The pose is one whereby the woman wraps her legs, with one foot hooked behind her other ankle. Because it appears as though the woman is wrapping herself up in a self-hug, this posture often has a sexual overtone to it.

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Finally, there are a few other leg-associated gestures that don’t fit into any of the prior categories but have a place in body language nonetheless. They are:
Thigh touching: Like hair stroking, this is another overt sign of physical attraction. Stroking one’s own thigh is a less than subtle indication of attraction, while stroking someone else’s thigh is a brazen move of sexual interest. Dancing: Depending on the type of dance, the kinesic meaning is different. Line dancing and hiphop for example, in which the individual may be a part of a group but where no physical contact is involved, are social activities and indicate that the participant wants companionship and desires to feel a sense of belonging. Ballet and ballroom dancing, on the other hand, in which a partner is more likely to be involved and where touching is called for, are more intimate activities and indicate that the participants desire close connection and physical touch. As a result, it’s not uncommon to find dance partners falling in love on the dance floor.

Head
Head position also plays a role in body language. Let’s take a look at a few specific examples of what head movements can signify.
Head Tilting: A level head (both vertically and horizontally) conveys confidence and selfassurance, just like a straight posture does, but it also gives off an authoritative and serious air. The adjective “level-headed,” meaning sensible and even-tempered, is testament to his fact. Tilting of the head, conversely, indicates friendliness and receptiveness. When someone tilts (left or right) her head while you are talking to her, it means she’s paying attention to what you are saying. If she tilts her head while you are questioning her, she is likely weighing her answers before speaking.

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Head Nodding: As the commonly accepted “yes” gesture, this movement signifies agreement in opinion. Because people like to be around those who agree with them, you can use this gesture to your advantage. Nodding of the head during a conversation puts your counterpart at ease. Head Shaking: While commonly accepted as the “no” gesture, you might be surprised that the opposite actually holds true in other parts of the world. For example, in certain regions of India, shaking of the head actually means “yes” (more on this in a later chapter of this book). In most instances, however, shaking the head from side to side is an indication of disagreement and disinterest in your counterpart. Try to avoid shaking your head when you are trying to put someone at ease. Nodding in agreement is generally a good idea to help put someone at ease – except in the few countries where nodding indicates a negative reaction (see the cultural differences section please)

Hands
Next to the eyes, the hands are probably the most expressive part of the body, and they play a large role in body language. You may not be able to read a person’s mind by her hand gestures alone, but you can tell a lot about her. Let’s take a look at how the hands come into play in kinesics by first examining various handshakes, and then moving to other, more specific handoriented gestures.
The Firm Handshake: This handshake is most often seen in formal situations. What is most telling is the positioning of the hand. A person who places his hand on top, with his palm facing down, feels the need to dominate the situation.

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The Bone-Crunching Handshake: If a person squeezes your fingers very tightly while shaking your hand, it is an indication that he is enthusiastic about the meeting but he also wants to make it clear that he is in charge of the situation. Limp-Wrist Handshake: Actually, this gesture doesn’t really amount to a shake at all. Rather it’s more of a finger clasping. It can mean several things including that the individual doesn’t want or like to be touched, or that (s)he is allowing you to take the dominant role. In other words, (s)he’s submitting to you or indicating that (s)he is weak. Don’t be fooled by this assumption, however. In a corporate setting, the astute businessman may use this handshaking tactic to make you think you are in control. In actuality, he may be trying to manipulate you. Double Handshake: In this handshake, the individual places his left hand over his and your clasped hands, covering both of them. Because it creates a closed circle, this handshake is like a mini hug. As a result, it’s an indication of extra-friendliness and intimacy.

We’ll now move on to other hand-related gestures that fall outside the scope of the handshake.
Open Hand Wave: As in all of body language, any open gesture is seen as a sign of invitation. Hence, a full-handed wave is a sign of welcoming invitation.

Touching Cheek: This is another act of intense intimacy. Brushing the fingers against someone’s cheek is an indication that the individuals involved either already have an extremely close relationship or they are seeking to establish one.

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Touching Face While Kissing: If a man touches a woman’s face while kissing her, he is slowly seducing her. He’s not in any rush to get her into bed. He’s merely enjoying the seductive foreplay. In all likelihood, he’s an attentive and committed lover. Hands Hidden from Sight: (tucked in pockets, behind back, in lap, etc.) This is a sly and secretive gesture. In effect, the person is conveying her lack of desire in communicating with you. The deeper the hands are thrust into the pockets the more this assumption holds true. That’s because placing one’s hands in the pocket entirely prohibits any type of intimacy, including touching or hand-holding.

Hands Clasped behind the Head: The person who employs this type of posture is exhibiting his arrogance. His pompousness is even more pronounced when he leans back while doing this. In effect, he’s exerting his power over you. He’s basically telling you he’s in the driver’s seat, thereby putting you on the defensive and submissive side of the situation Fiddling with a Wedding Ring: This gesture is an indication that the person’s marital relationship is in a precarious position. If a man or woman verbally mentions his/her spouse while toying with the wedding band, the likelihood of marital strife increases significantly. Thumb Hooked in Pocket: Since the thumb signals superiority, leaving only the thumb outside of one’s pocket is an indication that that person thinks he is above you or better than you. He’s signaling his elitism. On the other hand, if he hooks only his thumbs inside his pocket, he’s trying to cover up his superiority.

Chin
There are a couple of specific instances where the chin comes into play in body language reading. The following are the most telling examples:
Chin Resting in Hands: If while engaged in a conversation with someone she places her hand so that it is supported by her chin, she’s likely bored with your words. To be polite, she’s trying very hard to feign interest, but she’s likely not really concentrating on what you are telling her. Chin Stroking: If your listener strokes his chin while you are talking, the opposite holds true. He’s very intent upon what you are saying and finds your words interesting. This gesture is often seen in men who sport a beard and may be a deliberate attempt to appear pensive and/or academic.

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Chin Rubbing: More deliberate than the chin stroke, this gesture is one where the forefinger is run across the bottom of the chin only. It may be an indication that your listener doesn’t believe what you are telling him.

Groin Area
This aspect of body language typically comes into play between members of the opposite sex. As a “closed” pose, placement of the hands over the genital region is uninviting, meaning the man or woman is not open to being approached. In non-social situations, hands that are placed in front of the groin area are an indication of defensiveness or protectiveness. If you see someone adopting this pose, you’re likely making him/her feel ill at ease. In some paintings of “The Lady of Shallot,” we see the lady with her hands clasped over her groin. This is significant in relation to the painting’s timeline: 1888. As an artistic representation of the Victorian era, when being a proper lady was demanded by societal norms, the covering of the groin signified chastity. (This no longer holds, except in extremely religious cultures).

Voice Box
The voice box, scientifically known as the larynx, is more conducive to verbal communication than nonverbal communication. The Adam’s apple, however, the bone located in the middle of the throat and usually only prominently visible in men, does have some significance. A jumping of the Adam’s apple signifies emotional anxiety, embarrassment or stress. This movement may inadvertently occur when a man hears something to which he stands in strong opposition.

Waist
The American “ideal” for a woman includes rounded breasts and hips accentuated by a tiny waist, á la Scarlett O’Hara. Hence, men often find a small waist very appealing in women. Therefore, if a man focuses his attention on a woman’s waist, it has a very similar meaning to that of staring at the breasts: he’s sexually aroused by her. 77

When a couple leans against a wall with the woman leaning on top of the man while the man encircles his arms around her waist, he’s being protective of her, in effect barring her from leaving. A man who uses this strategy is also a little more likely to be loyal.

Nose
Let’s now examine some ways in which the nose comes into play in body language.
Nose Touch: When someone touches his nose during conversation it is an indication that he may be trying to hide something from his counterpart. Because this gesture makes a person come across as deceitful, both men and women who pick up on it are likely to be turned off by the individual performing it. Hence, when trying to make a good impression on someone, such a movement should be avoided. Nose Flare: If the nostrils of the nose flare out like those of an agitated horse, the individual is likely angry, exasperated or outraged over something. Nose Twist: If the nostrils of the nose shift to one side of the face, it is an indication of disapproval or dislike. Nose Wrinkle: When an individual bunches up the muscles surrounding the nose, he is disgusted with the situation. The deeper the wrinkle that forms under the eyes as a result of this action is an indication of just how repulsed he is.

Arms
While the hands are more significant in body language, the arms also play a role. Throughout this book we talk of “open” versus “closed” body postures. The placement of the arms is one of the essential elements in this distinction.
Arms at the sides or resting comfortably reflect an open and inviting attitude while arms crossed over the body, usually over the chest area, reflect a closed and uninviting attitude. When we close ourselves off in such a way, we want to isolate or distance ourselves from the situation. Alternatively, closed arms might be a defense mechanism to protect against unknown or not-yetfully evaluated threats. As a result, if someone crosses his arms and stands before you in a very upright stance, he’s putting up a front of being volatile and ready for action but his arm position is betraying his intended confidence. Underneath, he’s likely shaking like a leaf.

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Touching of another’s arm is a cautious act of intimacy. In most situations, you can touch an individual’s arm without it appearing as though you’re crossing societal standards or making a pass. Arm touching is a sign of empathy, sympathy or friendship. Such a gesture can be an attempt to make an ill-at-ease individual feel more comfortable in your presence.

Feet
Let’s now move all the way down to the bottom of the body in our body language exploration. What can the positioning and movement of the feet tell you about an individual?
Foot Jiggling or Tapping: When someone places her foot on the floor just behind the toes and bounces the foot and leg at the same time, it’s not a sign of irritation as one might think. Rather, it indicates that the individual is either worried or just plain bored. In other words, it’s either a nervous gesture or a boredom-breaker. Placement of the Feet: As discussed in other chapters of this book, the more a person’s feet are turned in your direction, the more interested she is in you.

Ear
Scratching of the ear, unlike nose rubbing, is not an indication of deceit. In fact, it’s more likely to signify that a person lacks confidence and/or certainty with the situation she’s involved in.

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• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Body Part Specifics While the eyes may say a lot, they don’t say everything. A sideways glance is flirtatious. A prolonged glance is coy. A hard stare is aggressive. An averted gaze is deceitful. Closed eyes indicate disinterest. Upward rolling eyes signify exasperation. Both eyebrows raised is an indication of interest in meeting. One eyebrow raised signifies skepticism. Knitted brows are an indication of worry. A wink should only be employed in social and familiar settings. When someone squints at you, she is interested I what you are saying. Looking left indicates that a person is deep in thought. Excessive blinking can signify either romantic interest or untruthfulness. Constricted pupils are a sign of discontentment. Wide eyes and pupils signify excitement. A mile is often forced, so it is not a good body language determinant. A genuine smile spreads all the way across the face. When the teeth are revealed, a smile is usually genuine. Covering the face indicates shock. Puckered lips are a sign of romantic interest. Pursed lips signify stress or worry. A bitten lip can indicate anger. A touched lip can indicate either silence or a desire to talk. Touching of the hair signifies a woman is concerned with what a man thinks of her. Men and women typically cross their legs differently and the manner in which they do so indicates their comfort level. If a person tilts her head during a conversation, she is friendly and receptive. The intensity and palm positioning in a handshake indicate dominance or submissiveness. Touching the nose indicates deceit. A flared nose signifies agitation. Twisted nostrils indicate disapproval. A wrinkled nose indicates disgust.

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BODY LANGUAGE DIFFERENCES ACROSS CULTURAL BOUNDARIES
While it might stand to reason that everyday gestures—like those conducted to express greeting—are universal, that is not the case. In fact, making that assumption while on foreign ground could land you in an embarrassing situation at best and an obscene circumstance at worst. This aspect of body language is so exhaustive that author Roger E. Axtell has devoted an entire book to it: Gestures (The DO’s and TABOOs of Body Language Around the World). Misunderstandings abound when you don’t take a given culture’s personal nonverbal communication into consideration. To avoid such unpleasantness, always arm yourself with country-specific body language research before stepping onto foreign soil. When studying this section, keep in mind that no rule can be applied to any singular set of people. Even in America, nonverbal communication can vary widely from region to region and person to person.

Insulting Gestures
Let’s cut right to the chase and start this chapter with the gesture that could land you in the most trouble if inadvertently used in another culture. We’re all familiar with the American insult of giving someone the middle finger, or “flipping someone the bird” (which interestingly enough has been around for over 2,000 years!). Well, there are equivalent signals (some variations of this gesture and some completely different) in other countries that you will most certainly want to avoid if you hope to make friends and enjoy your experience.

(Please excuse us – for illustration only!)

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Arabs have modified the “single-digit salute” in this manner. Rather than having the hand and finger pointing up, they extend the hand outward, palm facing down and fingers spread apart. The middle finger is then extended straight downward. In the Soviet countries, while the hand positioning is the same as in America, the middle finger is bent backward with the forefinger of the opposite hand, a gesture that has been dubbed “looking under the cat’s tail.” It’s considered extremely vulgar. In Brazil, an upgraded variation on “the finger,” called the “forearm jerk,” is often employed. In America, this gesture is recognized as the “Up yours!” signal, but Brazilians refer to it as “the banana.” In this insult, the arm is bent at the elbow with the hand curled into a fist, knuckles facing out. In Yugoslavia, the forearm jerk is modified by shaking the fist once and in parts of North America, Latin America and Europe, a double-armed technique is employed, whereby the left hand chops down on the bent elbow of the right arm or slaps the right shoulder. At the same time, the right fist is jerked upward.

Two insulting gestures that are universally recognized are the “ear waggle” (indicating laziness and stupidity) and the “nose thumbing” (indicating disdain) and are considered obscene across the globe. Some obscene gestures, however, are unique to a specific country. The following are examples of such:
The French finger an imaginary flute when someone is going on interminably about a subject that is boring them. Jewish people will point to their palm when they don’t believe a word of what they’re hearing. Think of it as the equivalent of “when pigs fly.” Syrians convey “Go to hell” by picking at their noses. In Greece, the ubiquitous policeman “stop” hand signal is known as the moutza and stands for throwing fecal matter and dirt in the face of the person on the receiving end of such a gesture. In West Africa this same gesture is the equivalent of calling someone a “bastard.”

Greetings
Saying hello in a foreign country is not always a simple matter of a firm handshake and earnest eye contact. Greetings vary widely from country to country. The following are some examples:

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In India, the namaste is employed, where the hands are place in a prayer position at heart level and the head is bowed.

In Middle Eastern countries, the salaam can still be seen being used by the elder population, in which the right hand first touches the heart then the forehead, finally sweeping outward. A slight head nod and the equivalent phrase to “Peace be with you” often accompany this gesture. When a handshake is employed, it is done gently (rather than firmly) so as not to signal aggression. In Japan and Korea a gentle handshake comes without eye contact, which is seen as intimidating. The French are the most prolific hand-shakers and will even extend an arm or finger when their hand is dirty or occupied. They are also very likely to kiss in greeting. In Bolivia, the handshake is often accompanied with a hearty clap on the back. In Southern Europe and Central and South America, the handshake is often more intimate, with the left hand touching the greetee elsewhere on his body (arm, elbow, etc.). In Russian countries, the handshake is often followed up with a tight “bear hug.” In Latin American countries, you will often be greeted with an abrazo, or embrace. The Japanese will bow to you in greeting. While it is not necessary to return the favor, a slight bow of your head shows your respect for their culture.

While all of these gestures are welcoming and make use of open hands (a signal that equates to “no weapons”), there are other places on earth where the act of greeting someone is a lot stranger.
Some East African tribes spit at the feet of their counterpart in greeting. Sticking the tongue out is a sign of greeting for some Tibetan tribesmen.

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Finger Pointing
While the degree to which an arm is outstretched is indicative of the distance of something just about everywhere, the fingers are not universally used to point something out. For example, in Japan and China, finger pointing is considered disrespectful. Residents of these countries will usually point with their entire hand outstretched instead. In Malaysia, the thumb, rather than the forefinger, takes on the pointing role. Curiously enough, in some cultures, the hand is not employed at all in directional pointing. Filipinos, Native American Indians, Puerto Ricans and many Latin Americans employ the lip point, in which the lips are pursed and thrust in the direction of interest.

The Asian Handshake
As already pointed out, the Japanese bow rather than shake hands in greeting, but this is quickly changing as Asians are more frequently adopting to Western ways. While in Japan, you might just find a hand being outstretched to your respectful bow because the Japanese have become conditioned to greeting Westerners in their own manner. Interestingly enough, in other Asian nations, like Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and China, the conventional handshake is the

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accepted form of greeting. While it might be accompanied with a slight bowing of the head, the full body bow is uncommon.

Behaving Yourself Abroad
What follows are some general behavior patterns you should observe when visiting foreign countries. These recommendations are common acts of courtesy, and adhering to them will ensure you are positively perceived.

Europe
Rise when a woman enters the room, do not chew gum and keep your hands out of your pockets while talking with someone in Austria. Do not point with your index finger or snap your fingers at someone and avoid casual behaviors like yawning, putting your feet up or blowing your nose in the presence of others while in Belgium. In Bulgaria be aware that the yes and no head gestures are opposite of those used by Americans (nodding indicates “no,” while shaking indicates “yes”). Politeness and formality are important in Denmark. For example, you should not rise from a table before your hostess does and women should always go through a door first. Loud conversations should be avoided and line-jumping should never be done in The United Kingdom. In France, the following actions and gestures should be avoided when in the presence of others: resting feet on chairs or tables, personal grooming, chewing gum, yawning, scratching and loud conversations in public, talking with hands in pockets.

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In Germany, always knock before entering a closed door. Always shake hands with everyone in a group and never put your feet on furniture. Chewing gum while conversing is considered extremely rude. In Greece, avoid the OK signal as it can be taken as obscene. Instead, use the “thumbs up” signal. A note of caution, however; the “thumbs down” signal is considered rude. Always shake hands when greeting and departing in Italy. When visiting churches, women should cover their heads. Cover your mouth when yawning. In the Netherlands, always wipe your feet before entering someone’s home and maintain direct eye contact when conversing with someone. As in most European countries, do not chew gum or put your hands in your pocket when talking with someone. When in Norway, always rise when someone is introduced to you. Also, avoid using a boisterous or loud tone when talking. When visiting a Greek Orthodox Church in Romania, a woman should always dress conservatively in skirts rather than pants and she should keep her bare arms covered. Men usually do not seat themselves until all women have been seated in Spain. The OK sign is also considered obscene here. Pushing and shoving in line are considered acceptable behavior. Men can cross their legs when seated, but it is considered unladylike for a woman to do so.

Line-jumping is not appropriate in Sweden, and physical displays of affection are uncommon. When leaving someone’s home, you should not put on your coat until you step outside the doorway. Littering is an act that is met with extreme disdain in Switzerland. The Swiss also are extremely considerate toward the elderly. Never smoke at the Swiss dinner table.

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Being comprised of diverse republics, the former Soviet Union is a crapshoot when it comes to diehard body language rules. As a general rule, do not whistle in public and always turn to face others if you must pass them to get to your seat in a theater. Never butt into long lines, which are considered the norm for Russians.

Middle East
The following are some general customs that apply to the entire Arab world:
Maintain proper posture and do not put your feet up on furniture. Don’t lean or tuck your hands in your pocket while conversing with others. Since Arabs consider the soles of the shoe to be the dirtiest part of the body, avoid inadvertently pointing them or showing them to others. The right hand always prevails so use it in all social situations. Use a less firm grip when shaking hands than you would in America. Touching is widely accepted and is even common between men, but men should not touch an Arabic woman unless she extends her hand first. Public displays of affection are not considered proper. Personal distance is smaller than in other countries, so you will notice people standing much closer together. Since direct eye contact is important, staring is not necessarily considered rude. Never photograph someone without his/her permission. When Arabs visit, do not allow your household pets in their presence.

Asia
In Bangladesh, use only the right hand when eating. The left hand is reserved solely for personal hygiene purposes. Also, never visit the restroom during a meal. Be aware of the fact that the “thumbs up” gesture is considered obscene in this country.

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In Burma, never touch the head on a Buddha image. Shoes should always be removed before entering a mosque and usually before entering a home as well. Touching, particularly by visitors to the country, is not considered an acceptable behavior in China. Personal distance is much smaller and applause is a form of greeting, which you should acknowledge with your own round of clapping. Sucking in air through the lips and teeth represents surprise or indecisiveness. You can use this signal to your advantage to modify a request before it is outright denied. You should not begin eating until your host picks up his/her chopsticks first. As a former British colony, most English customs prevail in Hong Kong. Men should not touch women in India. Staring is also off limits. Ask permission before smoking or photographing other people. Public whistling is considered impolite. The head is considered a sacred part of the body and should not be touched. Shouting, raising the voice and other demonstrative behaviors are frowned upon in Japan. Here too, it is considered improper to show an open mouth (yawning, etc.). Listen carefully without interrupting. The OK gesture may be interpreted as “money” in this country. It is considered rude to blow your nose in public. In the Philippines you may be greeted with a flashing or quick lifting of the eyebrows. Loud speaking, staring and drinking too much alcohol are all considered rude behaviors. Standing with your hands on your hips is interpreted as anger or defiance. Observance of orderly lines is uncommon. Like in Hong Kong, people in Singapore follow most traditional British customs. Since it is regarded as the spot where the spirit lives, touching someone on the top of the head is considered improper. Also, littering of any sort is strictly forbidden.

Thailanders believe that a spirit resides in their doorsill. As such, you should avoid stepping on doorsills when entering homes. Never pat someone on the back or put your arm around the back of his chair. Both gestures are considered offensive. Also, never toss an object to someone else as it is considered rude.
Formatted: Bullets and Numbering

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• • • • • • • • • • •

Body Language Differences Across Cultural Boundaries Most body language cues are NOT universal. You should always arm yourself with wountry0specific body language research before stepping foot on foreign soil. Several variations on the American “middle finger” insult exist in other regions of the world. The “ear waggle” and “nose thumbing” are considered obscene around the world. The moutza (stop signal with the hand) is obscene in Greece and West Africa. Greetings vary from country to country. The namaste (hands in prayer position at heart) is the traditional greeting in India. The salaam (the Peace Be with You”signal) is the traditional greeting in Middle Eastern countries. The abrazo (embrace) is used in greeting in Latin America. In some countries, shaking the head means “yes” and nodding the head means “no.” The “OK” signal and the “thumbs up” gesture are considered rude in some countries.

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MIRRORING BODY LANGUAGE
We’ve already discussed this topic in the Commanding Respect and Romantic Attraction sections of this book, but before we bring this idea to a close, let’s look at a few more specific examples where mirroring and matching of body language come into play.
Unconscious Mirroring: While mirroring can be manipulated to close a sale, find a date or command respect, it will sometimes be seen between two individuals who are not even trying to influence their counterpart. In such instances, it is likely that the two people involved are on the same wavelength. They may be a longtime couple, close family members or simply kindred spirits. Between Friends: Following the above logic, mirroring that occurs between friends of the opposite sex is not at all a clear-cut indication that they have romantic feelings for each other. More than likely they’ve just grown comfortable in each other’s presence and, over time, have naturally adopted each other’s nonverbal cues.

Mirroring isn’t always a conscious action, nor is it a decisive indicator of romantic interest.

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Body Language In Animals
Wouldn’t it be great if you could read your pet’s mind? Well, when you become adept at reading animal body language, you can almost do just that. Animals have a language all their own and because they cannot communicate via words like humans can, postures and physical behaviors actually become their main communication mode with both other animals and human beings. Moreover, the body language a person exudes is readily picked up by animals as they are already well attuned to interpreting such nonverbal cues in their everyday lives. That’s why people often correctly assume that animals can readily sense when someone is afraid of them, is happy to see them, is sad, etc. In the following subsections, the body language specifics of America’s three most popular pets will be examined in greater detail, along with some behaviors you should avoid so as to always ensure a pleasant animal encounter.

Cats
The flick of your cat’s tail or twitch of its whisker can be subtle yet quite illuminating indications of its mood. Let’s look at a few specific examples.
Ears Perked at Attention: If your cat’s ears are perked at attention, it is curious and attentive to what is going on around it. Ears Facing Forward: If your cat’s ears are facing forward, however, you should be on your guard. This is a strong indication that the feline is asserting its authority. This behavior is often exhibited when the cat is hunting or hears a disturbing noise.

Ears Twitching: Twitching the ears back is a clear indication of feline nervousness, while a frightened or aggressive cat’s ears will typically be flattened back almost completely against its head.

The positioning of your cat’s legs and paws can also cue you in to what it’s really thinking. While paws planted firmly into the ground indicate that a cat is being territorial and prefers that you not interfere with its space, crouched hind legs demand urgent caution. A cat in such a position is prepared to take action and will likely pounce at a moment’s notice. Do not make any sudden or overt movements when dealing with cats positioned as such.

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A cat’s posture is another strong indicator of its overall mood. When a feline is contented, it will exhibit signs of relaxation, the most obvious of which is partially closed eyes. A relaxed cat also:
stretches out, often in the most curious of positions flexes its claws, alternately extending then retracting them as it did while still a nursing kitten. treads its feet, frequently accompanied by the most obvious sign of contentment: purrs, which also often manifests itself in the happy cat.

If you want to decipher your cat’s mood, the eyes are the organs of focus. As previously pointed out, half-open eyes are usually an indication of relaxation, but this should not be taken as a hard and fast rule. That’s because all feline body language must be interpreted as a sum of all parts. So, if your lazy-eyed cat also lowers its head and flattens its body, it’s likely anything but relaxed. In combination, these nonverbal cues indicate that your cat is feeling threatened. (Dilated pupils are a sign that your cat is afraid). One thing you always want to avoid when dealing with an unfamiliar cat is prolonged eye contact. Felines see this as an assertive gesture and will feel threatened by it. The cat’s whiskers’ purpose is to measure depth and distance. Whisker positioning, however, also is indicative of a cat’s personality and mood. For example, curious cats tend to stretch out their whiskers so that they are pointed forward. On the other hand, anxious cats often tuck their whiskers against their face. Venturing further down, the way a cat carries its tail is also indicative of its mood.
High Tail: A tail that is carried high, with the end tip flicked over, is often a sign of welcome. You will see this behavior displayed in a lonely cat as you walk through the door at the end of a long day.

Rocking Tail Tip: The movement of the tail’s tip, however, must also be taken into consideration. While a gentle rocking denotes pleasure in a relaxed cat, it is also a sign that the feline is about to pounce. Tail Thrashing: Be especially attuned to gentle rocking that turns into more urgent twitching. Thrashing of the tail is a clear sign of an irritated cat, so stop whatever you are doing to incite this behavior and stand out of the way of a vengeful cat.

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The feline image that probably arouses the most anxiety in cat-haters is that of a hissing or spitting feline whose teeth are ferociously bared. Such behavior, in combination with a sideways stance and fur standing on end, gives the cat an imposing appearance so as to ward off tormenters and threats. Needless to say, if a cat acts this way toward you, you are not welcome in its territory.

Dogs
Like cats, dogs communicate via bodily postures and facial expressions. By carefully examining a canine’s body language cues, you can recognize the signs of submissiveness and fear, aggression and playfulness.
Submissiveness: When a dog is frightened, it will display overt signs of submission. Among these signals are lowered bodies, ears flattened against the head, closed mouths and tucked tails. We’ve all heard of the person who “walks home with his tail between his legs,” perhaps when he bragged of being the best at something and then was handily beaten. This metaphor comes from the submissive dog’s posture. The tail tucking is an indication that you have control over him. When a dog is feeling particularly intimidated, it may even roll onto its back and lie still, belly up. Aggression: A dog that is feeling threatened prepares itself for attack, something you obviously want to avoid. The canine’s body language cues in such situations are similar to the feline’s and are what one often envisions when picturing a “mad dog.” Included in these signals are an upright posture, a head that is held high and perked ears. Bared teeth are a natural response to the imposed threat, as is the fur along the dog’s spine standing on end. Like the feline, this is the dog’s innate way of making itself appear more imposing to its tormentor. Finally, the eyes will be narrowed to slits and the dog may challengingly stare at you.

Never stare down an unfamiliar dog. The canine will perceive you as a threat and react aggressively. You should be particularly aware of this with young children whose size often puts them right at eye level with a dog. Many dogs that are not typically aggressive will act out on children. Always instruct your children to avert their eyes from a dog’s until it becomes more familiar and relaxed with them.

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Playfulness: As the animal that is frequently referred to as “man’s best friend,” this is the behavior we are most used to expecting from a dog. When your pooch is in the mood to play, it will often lower its front end and raise its back end as if bowing down to royalty (after all, in your loyal canine’s eyes, you are the king or queen!). While this pose may appear odd, it is actually just a combination of the two aforementioned moods: submissiveness and aggression. When your dog is ready for play, it may also swipe its paw at you to draw your undivided attention and interest. We’ve already mentioned the three most obvious emotions displayed by dogs, but canines also communicate a wide variety of moods and feelings via more subtle body language cues. While other dogs are attuned to picking up on these cues, you as a human may have to “do a little digging” to figure out your pooch’s emotions. As you become more aware of your dog’s postures and expressions, you’ll better be able to communicate with it. In turn, this will lead to a happier owner and a better behaved pooch. Let’s look at a few more canine behaviors and how to recognize them.
Alertness: When a dog is alert, it will pick up its ears to better hear the sounds that have sparked its interest. While its mouth will generally be closed, with no teeth showing, its eyes will be wide open in obvious curiosity. Posture will be normal with standing on tiptoe a real possibility, and the tail will be raised, possibly wagging. Anxiousness: An anxious dog will show more subtle signs of aggression, since aggression will likely result if the anxiety-creating situation is not remedied. Ears partially back, slightly narrowed eyes, a closed or partially open mouth, a tense posture and a partially lowered tail are all signals of canine anxiety. Friendliness: A friendly dog will exhibit similar body language to the playful dog. Its ears will be perked, its eyes will be wide open and alert, and its mouth will be slightly open with the appearance as if it is smiling. Posture will be normal but the extremely friendly canine may wriggle its entire hind end. Its tail will be extended out or up and will often be wagging. Caution: Never assume any unfamiliar dog is friendly.

For a short interactive quiz that matches canine postures with their relevant human emotions, visit the “Online Activity” section of the following site: http://www.lam.mus.ca.us/exhibitions/dogs/communication/bodylanguage.html# (Note – this link was current as of May 2004, but as we do not maintain this website, we cannot guarantee its continued activity).

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Horses
As mentioned in a previous section of this chapter, a single body language cue is not enough to make a final determination of an animal’s overall mood. This rule holds true with horses as well. To glean a horse’s temperament, you must examine both its front and rear quarters for signs then group them as a whole in drawing an emotional conclusion. That’s because equines communicate with both their heads and their hindquarters. What follows are some of the signals you should be on the look out for when dealing with horses:
Ears Back: Because horses can move their ears so readily, you can learn a lot about your animal by watching these features. Ears that are perked back can mean one of several things. Like in dogs and cats, it may indicate that the equine is afraid of you or the animal may just be listening attentively to something. It may also indicate that the animal is getting sleepy. As you get to know the animal better, you’ll be able to differentiate between these motivations.

What you should be most wary of is a horse that puts its ears flat back to its neck. When this gesture is accompanied by wide eyes with the whites showing, you can be certain your horse is highly agitated and feeling threatened. If this happens, the equine is ready to act out, so beware of kicks or bites! Tipped ears, however, in and of themselves are not always a sign of a threat. They may also indicate that your horse is paying attention to what you are doing or that it is bored or sleepy. These latter moods are typically conveyed with tipped back ears that are gently angled out to the side. Ears Forward: As with ears that are tipped back, forward bent ears can mean several different things. Most often they simply indicate that your horse is friendly, but the direction in which the ears are pointing is most telling. Keep in mind that your horse’s ears will also point in the direction to which its interest is drawn. By being alert to this fact, you can divert your horse’s attention from something that is agitating it—before it turns into a dangerous situation—or you can draw its attention back to you, the rider, so that your journey is a safe one. Intensely perked ears are a clear indication of shyness or mischief-making and so too should be dealt with before the events causing this emotion turn into threatening or biting situations.
Formatted: Bullets and Numbering

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Facial Expressions (Eyes): Believe it or not, like humans, horses convey how they’re feeling by the look on their faces. For instance, if your horse is in a bad mood or is experiencing pain, you might notice that its eyes are narrowed and its mouth is pinched tightly shut. As alluded to previously, when a horse rolls its eyes back until the whites are visible, it is expressing fear. When you see this happen, you should be alert to the fact that your horse might be preparing to flee the perceived threat. Facial Expressions (Mouth): The way your horse is moving its mouth can also be a subtle indicator of its mood. A relaxed horse will exhibit eased or slackened jaw muscles with its tongue quietly working the bit. A nervous or anxious equine, on the other hand, will display a tightly closed jaw.

The Body: The head alone is not enough to make an overall determination of your horse’s overall temperament. Its body posture must also be taken into consideration. Tense muscles, as might be expected, indicate apprehension. A horse that is concerned with what is occurring around it will also shirk its hindquarters away until it feels it has put enough distance between itself and the perceived threat. A horse that hunches its back as you mount is unhappy with you being aboard, so prepare for the possibility of being bucked off.

Your Body Language and Your Horse
Just as you can figure out your horse’s mood and emotions by its postures and expressions, the opposite also holds true. The body language you give off in the presence of your horse is readily picked up by the animal. That’s because horses, like other animals, communicate with each other via body language. As a result, they’re already well attuned to picking up on its cues. A human’s close-set eyes automatically make him/her a predator in the wide-set eyes of the equine. That’s because our eyes appear much more like a lion’s or a tiger’s (the horse’s nemeses) than another horse (a friend). As such, staring at an unfamiliar horse or walking toward it purposefully and directly will instinctively arouse fear in the animal. Seeing you as a threat, the horse may flee, buck or kick. To avoid this, always approach an unfamiliar horse tentatively from the side with your eyes averted. Also, avoid any sudden movements so as not to startle the animal. Always approach the animal calmly, speaking soft words of reassurance. Talking soothes a wary animal as you will sometimes see in a familiar horse who becomes so relaxed at the recognition of your voice that it drops in its stall.

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• • • • • • •

Body Language in Animals Because they can’t communicate with words, animals “talk” via bodily postures and facial expressions. If you want to decipher your cat’s mood, the eyes are the organs of focus. Avoid prolonged eye contact with an unfamiliar cat. Never stare down an unfamiliar dog. Never assume an unfamiliar dog is friendly. Horses communicate with both their heads and their hindquarters. You should be wary of a horse that pulls its ears back against its neck.

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SOME VERY SPECIFIC POSTURES AND MOVEMENTS
Before we draw to a close, let’s briefly delve into some lingering topics that don’t quite fit into any of the previous chapters.
Back Stroking: When someone strokes her own back it may be a way of hiding her hands. Hence, she may be attempting to close herself off or avoid the situation. When a person strokes someone else’s back, its meaning is dependent on the situation. In an emotional circumstance (for example, grief), it is a sympathetic gesture to replace the words that are so difficult to find under such predicaments. In a social situation between a man and a woman, stroking another’s back is equivalent to touching the face. Either the individuals are already intimately involved, or the person doing the stroking wishes they were. Hugging: The intensity of the hug is what gives this gesture meaning. For example, cursory hugs are just a polite gesture and are given out only because the hugger feels the situation warrants extending one. Contrarily, tight bear hugs are indicative of a warm person and are usually extended between individuals who have a close connection with one another, be it a blood relationship, a strong friendship or a romantic relationship.

Polite Disinterest: If a person crosses her arms and leans back at the same time, she is saying she’s not interested. While this stance is often seen in conjunction with a smile, the fact that the smile remains on her lips is just her way of being polite. Recall that the smile is the most unreadable of all body language cues because it has become so socially expected. Arms Behind Head: When a man in a chair responds to a question by stretching his arms above and behind his head and leaves them there while conversing, it is an indication that he wishes to exercise control or power over the situation. Cheek Kissing: Like the weak hug, cheek kissing is often just a polite gesture, and a practice that is common among the elitist. If a guy you know touches and hugs you but avoids kissing you on the mouth, opting for your cheek instead, he might just be shy, but more likely he just wants to take things slow. Don’t push him into more, but make sure your own body language is open and inviting so that he knows you’re ready for more when he is.

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Leaning in Close: Suppose there’s this girl you know and every time you meet her, you stop and carry on a conversation with her. As you are talking, she always leans right into your face as if she wants to kiss you or see if you’re sporting a new after-shave. This is a tricky one to call. She’s invading your personal space, which would indicate she’s trying to intimidate you. Given that you’re longtime friends, however, it’s more likely she’s testing her bounds with you. She might be wanting to take things to the next level so she’s safely crossing normal boundaries. She isn’t, however, willing to put the friendship at stake over a rejection, so she might just be inviting you to make the next move. Body Language Games: There are a host of activities and quizzes that will help you learn more about body language. Here are just a few online resources (note: these were current as of May 2004 – but as we do not control these websites, we can not guarantee their ongoing active status … if a desired link is broken, we suggest typing the title of that link for example “Body Language Games” into your favorite search engine to find more current links) Body Language Games: http://www.aber.ac.uk/education-odl/motivelearn/bodylang.html; Body Language Exercise: http://www.rider.edu/~suler/bodylang.html; What’s Your Body Language Style: http://www.thirdage.com/cgibin/qdisplay.cgi?qfile=/www/docs/qfiles/BodyLanguage.q&qtemplate=/www/docs/qfiles/bod ylanguage.html; What Does Your Body Language Say About You?: http://www.flare.com/stylemakers/article.jsp?content=20040413_144209_4864; Female: What Is Your Body Language Saying That You’re Not?: http://www.rateyourself.com/poll.cfm/Subject_ID/3/Poll_ID/1101. Body Language at Sleep: A CNN News story recently revealed these facts about a person’s sleeping position: “Fetal sleepers tend to be shy and sensitive while people who assume the soldier position, flat on their back with arms at their sides, are quiet and reserved. Sleeping on one's side with legs outstretched and arms down in what Idzikowski (the researcher) refers to as the log, indicates a social, easy-going personality. But if the arms are outstretched, the person tends to be more suspicious.”

Rocking with Eyes Closed: You may find that you rock when you close your eyes to pray or meditate, whether sitting or standing. This is not so much a reflection of your personality but more a fact that your body loses its sense of balance when the eyes are closed. To compensate for this unexpected circumstance, your body naturally sways. Fidgeting: Pacing, repetitively moving a particular body part, toying with objects and drumming the fingers are all signs of boredom, impatience or nervousness. Hence, the child seated in a swivel chair who is in constant motion while talking likely wishes s/he could be elsewhere.

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SOME FINAL MISCELLANEOUS THOUGHTS
Signs That You Are Invading Someone’s Personal Territory:
rocking leg swinging tapping

Theses are the first signals of tension and indicate that your presence is unwanted, that you are intruding; these signals are often followed by:
closed eyes tucking of the chin into the chest shoulder hunching,

… all of which are cautionary signs that you should “go away” (or adjust your approach to put the person more at ease – see the chapter on same please)

Body Language Clichés
Common phrases such as “shoulder a burden of responsibility”, “face or chin up”, “grit your teeth”, “keep a stiff upper lip”, “bare your teeth”, “catch someone’s eye”, “shrug it off”, etc. not only convey an emotion but also point to an actual nonverbal gesture that indicates that same emotion.

The Impact of Body Language on Mood

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If a person’s body language (the way she walks, sits, stands, moves) is indicative of her mood, then it stands to reason that by changing such postures, one can affect one’s mood. For example, adopting a confident, accepting posture when one feels depressed can actually serve to lift the depression.

In Conclusion
Kinesics is a science that has undergone major developments in the last thirty years. Although it will never be an exact science, the serious student of body language obtains a significant advantage in both social and professional settings. We sincerely hope we have provided you with a solid foundation from which you can continue to explore this exciting field!

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APPENDIX A – PERSONALITY TRAITS OFTEN ASSOCIATED WITH PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS
IMPORTANT NOTE: Exercise extreme caution when making sweeping body language generalizations such as these, but have fun with some of the following personality cues, over which a person really doesn’t have much control. Please also note that much of this research is controversial and inconclusive – we present it here for the interested reader only:
Lips—Open lips often indicate that a person is straightforward and is not hampered by societal rules. Tightly closed lips, on the other hand, are many times a sign of courageousness, lack of humor and reliability. Thick lips are thought to evoke sensuality while a protruding lower lip is presumed indicative of a good listener. Eyebrows—Close-set eyebrows can denote someone of a suspicious nature. On the contrary, wide-spaced brows signal frankness. The curve of the brow can also provide insight into an individual’s personality. A gentle curve of the brow denotes tenderness and artistic talent while high arches more likely signify weakness and indecision. Low-set brows that lack curve indicate determination and strong will.

Ears—Small ears are a sign of shyness while larger ears signify a gruffer demeanor. Eye Color—If a person is born with a particular eye color, they are likely to exhibit the following personality traits: Black—passion, arduousness, craftiness. Brown—gentleness, unselfishness, irritability. Blue—affability and an easygoingness in terms of life’s demands. Green—jealousy and a keen ability to judge other people. Gray—a poetic temperament and romantic disposition. Nose—A straight, Grecian nose indicates refinement in all areas of life. Such individuals are also highly success-oriented. Because individuals with large, drooping noses are often the subject of

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ridicule, it is not surprising that they come across as sarcastic or bitter. In actuality, they are usually quite friendly. A pert nose, often associated with the pretty young woman, signifies vivaciousness, playfulness and strong willfulness. Finally, a short, snub nose is indicative of a good sense of humor but a lack of practicality. It’s not unusual for the “class clown” to have this type of nose.

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