Some tricks, like remembering to smile, are easy to implement in your everyday life.
Some tricks, like remembering to smile, are easy to implement in your everyday life.

8 body-language tricks that are hard to master but will pay off forever

Aine Cain
Sunday 24 September 2017 11:02
Comments

As Ursula the sea witch famously said, "Don't underestimate the importance of body language."

Some tricks, like remembering to smile, are easy to implement in your everyday life.

However, other techniques, while relatively common sense, are somewhat trickier to tackle.

Still, they can make a huge difference.

Here are eight body-language hacks that can be tricky to master but will pay off forever once you do:

1. Mirror the person you're speaking to.

Mirroring -- aligning your body to match the position of whoever you're speaking to -- can be a tough skill to master. But doing it shows admiration and agreement, says Rosemary Haefner, the chief human-resources officer at CareerBuilder.

It can be hard to do this subtly, without looking like you're mimicking or mocking someone, but it's a good trick to employ if you're trying to make a good impression.

2. Walk with purpose and energy.

Not everyone walks with confidence. Some of us shuffle through life with a slumping, awkward gait.

And it can be tough to change the way we walk. But if you take some steps to improve it, you can help to ensure that people don't make snap judgments about your confidence, attractiveness, and trustworthiness, according to Scientific American.

3. Maintain good eye contact.

You'll immediately see an improvement in your face-to-face communications with others.

It's all in the eyes.

People with a shaky gaze often come across as anxious, distracted, or dishonest. It can be tough to master the skill of maintaining eye contact, since it's an uncomfortable and unnatural thing for some people. But it's a practice that can help you immensely in life.

Luckily, there are some simple techniques for maintaining better eye contact if you feel your stare isn't cutting it.

In "How To Talk To Anyone," the author and communication expert Leil Lowndes advises you should "pretend your eyes are glued to your conversation partner's with sticky, warm taffy."

Once you master this trick, you'll immediately see an improvement in your face-to-face communications with others.

4. Keep your hands visible.

It's hard to know what to do with your hands sometimes, especially if you're a somewhat nervous person.

As a result, you might take to compulsively jamming them in your pockets or crossing your arms. Those moves are understandable, but they also project a somewhat negative image.

As Business Insider previously reported, it's important to keep your hands visible, lest you look like you're hiding something.

Invite people in and allow them to trust you by using more open body language. Avoid positions that make you appear defensive -- even if that's how you're feeling.

5. Don't fidget, but don't be too stiff.

Some people are just a bit twitchy -- always drumming their fingers, tapping their feet, or twirling their hair. Some people are almost unnaturally still. The problem is that others may mistake that for dishonesty or fear.

That might be common knowledge, but Lillian Glass, a behavioral analyst and an expert on body language who has worked with the FBI on unmasking signals of deception, previously told Business Insider that you should also watch out for people who are not moving at all.

"This may be a sign of the primitive neurological 'fight,' rather than the 'flight,' response, as the body positions and readies itself for possible confrontation," Glass said. "When you speak and engage in normal conversation, it is natural to move your body around in subtle, relaxed, and, for the most part, unconscious movements. So if you observe a rigid, catatonic stance devoid of movement, it is often a huge warning sign that something is off."

If you can strike a balance between swaying and stiffness, you'll be able to make a better impression with others.

6. Sit up straight.

Correcting your slouch is not always easy, but it's worth it in the long run.

Your parents were right to constantly bark at you to adjust your terrible posture when you were a moody teen.

"If you lounge back in your chair, recruiters interpret it as a sign of your disinterest in the open position or that you're not taking the interview seriously, neither of which will help you land the job," Amanda Augustine, a career-advice expert for TopResume, previously told Business Insider. "In addition, slumping over in the chair can indicate a lack of confidence."

Instead, she suggests sitting as if there were a string tied from the top of your head to the ceiling. Sitting up straight is seen as a sign of intelligence, confidence, and credibility, she says.

Anyone with bad posture can tell you that correcting your slouch is not always easy, but it's worth it in the long run.

7. Work on your handshake.

No one wants to receive a "dead fish" handshake. Writing on LinkedIn, Ashish Arora, a founder of InfoShore, says that "a weak handshake equals a weak person" in most people's minds.

So how do you give a great handshake?

Arora breaks it down: "When squeezing your hand you want the grip to be tight enough to feel the bones of the other person's hand lightly pressing into your skin and then keeping the same amount of pressure while you make two to three moderately strong shakes in the vertical plain. Maintain eye contact and a smile throughout."

8. Slow down.

When you're nervous, it can be easy to speed up everything, including your speech and movements.

However, as Peter Economy, an expert on leadership, writes in Inc., it's far better to try to slow things down.

"When we have precision in our movements, it's more powerful than simply doing something for the sake of the action," Economy wrote. "Our own brains know it, and the brains of everyone else know it too."

So take a deep breath, slow down, and be more deliberate about your movements at your next meeting. You'll look far more confident and competent.

Read more:

• The 2 worst mistakes you could make in a job interview, according to an ex-Apple recruiter
• This is why narcissists are so cruel to the people they date
• Inside the daily routine of billionaire Bill Gates

Read the original article on Business Insider UK. © 2017. Follow Business Insider UK on Twitter.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in