There are various ways of reading body language
—you should know how to look for the telltale signs
— but at the same time, you should know that there will be exceptions.
In any case, these signs are almost universal and you can use your better judgment to find out how people tell what you want to know, most times without putting their thoughts into words.
Let us get started with the various tips and techniques on how you can read and interpret body language in the people that you meet.
For people who are interested in learning how to read body language, certain skills are necessary. First, one must be observant. Second, they must be willing to put effort into the learning process. They should understand that they will need real experience as their hands-on training, and that they will not master the art overnight or after just a few days or weeks. It takes careful study and much patience.
That said learning to read body language is not a very difficult task. One reason for this is that it has been studied for a long time by psychologists and scientists.
They have laid down the considerable groundwork to guide those who are truly interested in learning how to interpret nonverbal language. Another reason is that learning skill is inherently fascinating and useful.
All people want to know when someone is lying to them, or what real thoughts lie beneath a poker face. The study of body language is also naturally engrossing for someone who is interested in people and the dynamics of relationships.
Here are some tips to read body language:-
⦁ Note the facial features, especially the eyes.
These are the “windows to the soul” and they convey much of what a person feels inside. If the eyes are dilated or seem to be wide open, it means that the person is interested in the topic or in the person he is talking to. Dilated eyes also indicate focus or concentration. In other cases, they can mean that the person has been taking drugs.
⦁ Where the eyes are directed can also be significant.
If they are looking at the side, the person may be feeling guilty or wanting to hide something. If the eyes are looking down, he may be feeling shameful or subservient. But these interpretations are not correct one hundred percent of the time. It will take the experience to learn how to correctly gauge what the eyes are saying.
Here are a few facial gestures or movements and what they can mean:
⦁ Rubbing the chin
– The person is thinking or trying to decide on something.
⦁ Eyebrows raised
– These indicate shock or surprise. The greater the emotion, the higher the lift of the eyebrows.
⦁ Touching the eyebrows quickly
– This can mean a sort of a greeting, a sign to acknowledge someone who has just entered the room or started talking to the person.
Also, notice the general body position.
If one person’s stance or position is similar to that of the person next to him, this can mean that they both are comfortable with one another and that they are hitting it off. This is called “mimicking” or imitating the other person’s body position.
Observe as well the distance or space between two people.
The closer they are, the more affection, warmth or openness there is between them. If they are far apart, they can be recent acquaintances who are not (yet) very interested in one another.
If one person moves closer to another, but this second person moves farther away, this means he is turning away or refusing any further closeness. But if the second person moves closer too, he is reciprocating the first person’s interest or advances.
The hands, fingers, arms, legs, feet and other body parts can express so many things that it will take a whole book to cover all the possible interpretations. Learn more by reading on the subject, and observe people around you to become more skilled in interpreting body language.