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10 Body Language Secrets Every Successful Person Knows

10 Body Language Secrets Every Successful Person Knows

If you want to become successful, then it is imperative that you hone in on your bodily-language. I’d go as far to say that it’s just as important — even more important at times — than vocal language because it subconsciously conveys how you really feel, even when your words might not. Since the emergence of this fact, people have been polishing their own body language as well as their ability to detect them in others.

This has sprung popular TV shows such as Lie to me, best selling books like The Definite Book of Body Language, and numerous websites dedicated to the cause. We thought that since everyone with their eye on success — whether in business, relationships and so on — is capitalising on this new wave of non-verbal’s, we should compose a list of 10 body language secrets every successful person knows, and give them to you. Apply these in day to day life and you’ll be rocketing to success without having to say a word.

1. Do: Smile When Appropriate.

smile

    Some call this basic, I call it fundamental. We all know that smiling is a great tool in gaining instant trust and acceptance from others, however the key is knowing when it is appropriate. When meeting someone new or giving feedback to a boss, yes. When discussing why you failed to hit your quota for the month, or why your relationship isn’t working, no. Smiling when inappropriate conveys insecurity and a lack of confidence. Know when to smile, a fundamental key.

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    2. Don’t: Give a Weak Handshake.

    handshake

      If there is anything which shows submission when first interacting with someone, it’s this. A weak handshake shows a weak person, and weak people are rarely successful. A job interview, a business venture, meeting possible partners, you name it, just don’t take this to an extreme and turn it into a squeezing match. Bonus tip: when shaking hands with someone rotate your wrist so that your hand is slightly on top of theirs, a subconscious display of dominance.

      3. Do: Utilise the Facial Triangle.

      triangle

        People sure love to be listened to, it shows respect, interest and trust. Now whilst solid eye-contact can be great, it can be overly-intense. Using what’s called the facial triangle not only helps to lower the intensity of a gaze, but by rotating between the two eyes and the mouth, you show that you are reading their lips, a sign of intimate attention. What’s great about this is that it applies to every direct communication scenario you can think of. Watch as peoples trust in you rockets.

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        4. Don’t: Rub Your Palms, Face or Neck.

        anxiety

          We all know this one, the universal sign for anxiety and stress. This displays that you can’t handle the work set out for you, or are worried about how your work/image/business is being received, and if you lack confidence in yourself, others will lack confidence in you also. Successful people don’t do this (not publicly at least), they show security and strength even when the odds are against them.

          5. Do: Steeple Your Hands.

          steeple

            If you want to come across as interesting, intelligent and confident, then you should adopt this trademark gesture. Also known as the “Merkel-Raute”, this is a favourite amongst politicians as it shows that they can (according to them) be trusted with important duties. This works better in more formal environments, use it when talking to your superiors and watch your credibility go skywards. Tip: Don’t lower your steeple mid-conversation as this shows a sudden loss in confidence.

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            6. Don’t: Look Overly-Agreeable.

            fake smile

              Whilst it’s great to be on equal terms with people, whether they are your boss or your employees, it’s damaging to pretend that you agree, when in truth you completely disagree. This is the employee who nods uncontrollably whilst their boss lay’s blame on them. Don’t be afraid to show a curious, or even a bewildered expression when a false statement is made, then follow it up with your reasons. There are some crazy people out there, if you’re not disagreeing with some of them then you’re probably doing it wrong.

              7. Do: Strike a Power Pose.

              power pose

                Yes, this is the superhero’s go-to pose — and for good reason — because it literally powers you up! Research has shown that they not only make others perceive you as confident and powerful, but that it makes you feel just that. Practising power poses before a high-stakes scenario raises your bodies testosterone levels, whilst decreasing cortisol levels (your stress hormone). In business, successful people know the incredible power of this pose, a confidence booster not only in yourself, but in others opinions of you.

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                8. Don’t: Face Away From Whoever You’re Engaging With.

                ignorance

                  This one can mean a multitude of things, and they’re all negative. From fear, anxiety, distrust, ignorance to contempt, not facing someone — let alone making eye contact — when you’re engaging with them will see that your success stays a product of your imagination. Success is more often than not a team effort, and if you can’t build a team who is even fond of you, the only way you’re going is down. Don’t be ignorant, you wouldn’t appreciate someone doing this to you.

                  9. Do: Maintain Good Posture.

                  posture

                    Nothing says sloppy like someone who can’t even carry themselves physically, let alone mentally. Poor posture is often a product of our lifestyles, too much time sitting or craning your neck over your phone for instance. Not only is it bad for your health but it’s bad for your appearance and your respect. It’s hard for others to see you as equal or as a superior when you’re foreheads facing the floor. You’ll add a couple of inches to your height, and perhaps some zero’s to your pay-check.

                    10. Don’t: Exaggerate Your Gestures.

                    exaggerate

                      It’s hard to take someone who is overly flamboyant seriously, exaggerating your gestures in an effort to come across as enthusiastic or confident will only cause others to think the contrary. There is no shame in remaining reserved, in fact it is often a sign of maturity and mystery. Successful people know not to be boisterous if they want to remain respected. Though you may want to appear energetic for that job interview, too much is overkill.

                      Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

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                      Last Updated on May 21, 2019

                      How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

                      How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

                      For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

                      If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

                      Example 1

                      You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

                      You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

                      In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

                      Example 2

                      You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

                      People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

                      You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

                      Example 3

                      You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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                      The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

                      Example 4

                      You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

                      Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

                      If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

                      Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

                      • Understand your own communication style
                      • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
                      • Communicate with precision and care
                      • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

                      1. Understand Your Communication Style

                      To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

                      In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

                      Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

                      2. Learn Others Communication Styles

                      Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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                      If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

                      “How do you prefer to receive information?”

                      This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

                      To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

                      3. Exercise Precision and Care

                      A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

                      On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

                      Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

                      I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

                      I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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                      In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

                      The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

                      Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

                      4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

                      Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

                      In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

                      “Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

                      Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

                      Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

                      It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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                      It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

                      It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

                      Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

                      Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

                      The Bottom Line

                      When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

                      I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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                      Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

                      Reference

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