Ways to Improve Your Body Language Omaha NE
Ways to Improve Your Body Language
5 ways to improve your body languageAuthor: projectmanuk
Your body language is an integral part of your interpersonal skills. Understanding and controlling how you use your body to communicate is essential to working in a team, managing your staff, contributing to meetings and confronting difficult colleagues.
1. Slow down
Speed generally indicates nervousness or impatience. Garbled speech doesn’t just make you sound anxious, but it also means that people have a harder time understanding what you are saying.
Sudden, expansive movements can suggest tension, or sometimes even aggression. Smaller movements might come across as a nervous twitch. Even nodding is affected. Slow nodded suggests attention, while quick nodding suggest impatience.
Learn to speak in slow, measured tones, to keep your hands, arms and feet still when listening (to show attentiveness), to concentrate on deep and steady breathing. These may seem like small changes, but they will have a profound affect on the impression that you give of your state-of-mind.
2. Open up
Crossed arms and crossed legs make you look defensive, secretive and unapproachable. A frown, even if you are just concentrating, could make people think that you are angry or in a bad mood. This will affect that way that they treat you, and the way that they treat you will affect the way that you feel about them and the body language that you use ... and so on.
It is essential to break this cycle by deliberately opening out. Raise your chin, uncross your arms and legs, turn your palms face up. This will show that you are ready to listen to what people want to tell you, and will reassure them that you are not about to attack.
3. Walk well
How you walk affects how you think about yourself and how others react to you. Keeping a firm stride and swinging your arms demonstrates that you are active, alert and in control.
If you are with a group then walking in front and opening doors will put you in the position of guide, as will ushering people out of the door and leaving last when closing a meeting.
4. Use barriers
A desk or other physical object positioned between two people creates a barrier. People use barriers when they are nervous or defensive and want to keep something between themselves and the object of their nervousness. Look out for times when you use barriers, and learn to deal with your emotions in a less explicit way.
You can also use barriers as a tool when dealing with nervous subordinates. By ensuring that a barrier is in place you can allow them to relax their defences and to feel less under the spotlight.
5. Use levels
Standing or sitting higher or lower than others creates a hierarchy. Being aware of this hierarchy will prevent you from unintentionally making a staff member feel inferior, and will allow you to take an assertive position when faced with aggressive or domineering behaviour.
Again, you can also use barriers as a tool when dealing with nervous subordinates. By ensuring that a barrier is in place you can allow them to relax their defences and to feel less under the spotlight.
Simon Buehring works for KnowledgeTrain which offers Time Management Training in the UK and overseas. He can be contacted via the team building training website.
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