Body language is an important and powerful means of non-verbal communication that speaks volume about the personality and character of a person. You can actually pass on a lot of information using facial expressions, eye contact, tone of voice, body posture and motions, positioning within groups and so on. Body language is judged everywhere, be it an interview or a casual friendly get together or your workplace. Body gesture is a symbol of the confidence and self-esteem of a person. With your simple gesture, you can convey clearly what is running on your mind. For instance, when you are around with friends and people you like, your gestures are free and responsive, but when you are amidst strangers or people who you are not fond of, your body language is a reserved and aloof one. This article provides you with essential body language tips to help you maintain a proper demeanor within social circle.
Essential Body Language Tips
- Eye contact is the basic and most important aspect of your body language and can speak volumes about your character. A good eye contact portrays respect and interest. It is important to maintain eye contact when you are speaking to a person. Eye contact should be such that it makes the person sitting opposite to you genuinely comfortable and reflect your interest in the ongoing conversation. However, do not stare at the person as this might make him/her uncomfortable.
- Move, sit and stand tall. A slouched posture reflects uncertainty and low self-esteem. To portray confidence, keep your back straight and head high. Keep your posture straight and tall, as this will make people respect whatever you speak. Remember, a confident person is always preferred over an uncertain and hesitant person.
- Nod your head in agreement or disagreement, when a person is talking to you. Nodding your head slowly gives out a signal that you are listening and understanding the conversation. However, make sure not to over-do the movement, as it might display ridicule or mockery.
- Maintaining the right distance is crucial for emitting the right signals. If you sit or stand too close to a person, you will be termed as ‘pushy’. On the other hand, if you sit or stand too far away, you’ll be termed as standoffish. Therefore, it becomes quite important for you to maintain the right distance from people, especially when you are in a group. Make sure not to overstep the comfort zone of a person or make him/her feel ignored, at the same time.
- Your arms too play an important role in your body language as they give away the clues as to how open and respective you are to everyone you meet and interact with. The best place for your arms is by the side of your body or behind your back. This shows that you are not afraid to take on whatever comes your way and can handle things upfront. The more open and outgoing you are, the more you will use your arms while speaking. The quieter you are, the less you will be the arm movement at the time of expressing things. Strike a balance and keep your arm’s movement midway. Make sure that you don’t cross your arms when you are in a group, as this is a sign of disrespect and lack of manners.
- Did you know that your legs also communicate? You must be wondering how? Well, the answer is simple. The way you position your legs at the time of standing or sitting convey what is on your mind. While a cross legged sitting posture indicates your unconcern, wide open legs in public suggest your reduced sense of demeanor. Shaking of the legs is a sign of nervousness and anxiety.
- Hand gestures are also something that one needs to keep under check in order not to give out any wrong signals. If you keep your palms slightly up and outward, it is seen as openness. Palm down gestures are normally considered as dominant, emphasizing an aggressive approach. This palm up and down gestures plays an important role especially, while making a hand shake. A handshake should always be offered with a hand upright and vertical, conveying equality and confidence.
- Don’t be too serious or too smiley. Relax a bit, smile and laugh when necessary. Do not just sit like an expressionless log, as this gives out a negative impression to others. However, do not be the first one to laugh at your own joke as well, since this can indicate your nervousness. Wear a smiling face always, as this forwards your image as a positive person and one who is welcoming.
- The angle of your body at the time of conversation also plays an important role in defining your confidence. Our body angle towards a person is an indication of our attitude and feelings towards them. We angle towards the people whom we like and are friendly to. On the other hand, people whom we don’t like or are not fond of are usually ignored, as our body angles away from them.