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The Body Language of Success: Tricks from Models

The Body Language of Success: Tricks from Models

Body language is so important. It can show how you’re really feeling about a person or a situation. A lot of times the way your body is talking says more than what you’re saying out loud. Your body language can give off vibes that others will pick up and sometimes that can help or hurt their first impression of you. Body language can make or break you: you can come across completely differently to others based on small things you do, i.e. you could come across as a nervous person by the clicking of your pen or you could be a confident role model by the way you present yourself to others.

Whatever You’re Feeling, You’ll Become

Naomi Campbell, who has been in the modeling industry for almost 30 years now, she stated this more than perfectly in a Huffington Post interview: “If you feel fear, fear will become you.” If you’re feeling scared then your body language is going to show that, other people will pick up on it and then what? They’re going to judge you. If you’re feeling confident, then people are going to pick up on that and think, “wow, I want to go talk to that person.” If there’s a way you want to convey yourself, do it through body language first. Watch people who have that sort of ardor about them. Observe friends, role models, people you meet on a train and imitate it. Stand in a mirror and try to practice the way you want to be. Watch the way you cross your legs, roll your eyes, or purse your lips, it all conveys a message of how you’re really feeling.

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Posture Is Everything

As stated, stand in front of the mirror and practice the way you want to be. Don’t slouch, sit up straight. Models don’t slouch, they lean. When you lean too much it’s slouching. Slouching shows that you’re really not committed or interested in whatever it is you’re doing. And it’s bad for your back.  Having good posture when you sit, stand, and walk shows that you’re not only confident in what you’re doing but that you know what you’re doing and you care about what you’re doing (even if you don’t). You don’t want to sit in an interview or stand around at work slouching, it shows that you don’t care about the important project that you’re working on or that you really just don’t want to be there. If a model slouched on a runway or in an interview with someone, they wouldn’t ever get a call back to do a new shoot or walk on the runway again.

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Keep Your Hands Calm

Models almost never move their hands when walking the runway or in interviews. A lot of them take this trait outside their careers as well. Being able to keep your hands calm show that you’re calm. Fiddling your thumbs, clicking a pen, tapping a table, biting your nails, and touching your hair or face a lot are nervous habits. A lot of the time we don’t realize we’re doing it, it’s just a natural reaction our bodies have when we’re nervous, feeling shy, or even angry. Keeping your hands still shows that you are confident and controlled as you go about your daily life.

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Where You Stand Is Important (Literally)

Have you ever noticed how models are spaced a certain distance from the other models on the runway or in photos? It’s important to show how close you’re willing to be and how you really feel about a situation. If you stand too far away from others then you can seem shy and really reserved. People aren’t going to want to talk to you. Taking up space is okay. I’m not saying stand in the way – I’m saying make a stance when you’re standing. It lets people know that you’re there, you’re in the room and you’re ready to be approached. Models don’t shy away and hide in corners, they make sure their presence is known by the way they stand.

Keep Your Head Up

Models aren’t known for being shy. They aren’t the girls you read about in books who hide behind an over-sized cardigan and layers of messy hair with their eyes looking at the floor. Anyone who actually does that may have difficulty getting ahead professionally. Push your hair out of your face, walk in a confident stance and make sure your head is held up. When you have your head down you look insecure, lost and shy. When you have your head up and you’re looking forward, you exert an amount of intensity that people want to be a part of.

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Last Updated on August 4, 2020

The Gentle Art of Saying No For a Less Stressful Life

The Gentle Art of Saying No For a Less Stressful Life

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here’s how to master the Gentle Art of Saying No:

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1. Value Your Time

Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”

2. Know Your Priorities

Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time?

For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.

3. Practice Saying No

Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.

4. Don’t Apologize

A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.

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5. Stop Being Nice

Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets.

Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.

6. Say No to Your Boss

Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no,” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning.

But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.

7. Pre-Empting

It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting,

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“Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”

8. Get Back to You

Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them:

“After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.”

At least you gave it some consideration.

9. Maybe Later

If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say,

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“This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].”

Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.

10. It’s Not You, It’s Me

This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often, the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time.

Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

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Featured photo credit: Kyle Glenn via unsplash.com

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