Body Language Project Dictionary Index
Michael Thorne Smith movies. Females give lots of subtle signals, tend not to repeat them too often, and infer lack of interest in a male failing to respond. Direct eye contact is generally regarded as a sign of truthfulness, however practised liars know this and will fake the signal. The cause of the attraction depends on the situation. Pretend they are nude!
Nine Ways to Catch His Eye Without Saying a Word
Weak handshakes can be due to various aspects of personality, mood, etc. If, for example, one is speaking honestly with the palms up an honest gesture we can say that the body language and verbal language are congruent. Good video, specially about nervous body language tips. While this might seem obvious written in simple language, it's not always so clear if your attention is on other matters. A specific difference regarding eye contact can be found in some black Caribbean cultures however, whereby young people tend to be instructed not look at someone eye to eye when being told off or disciplined. The gesture is occasionally seen by a person doing the talking, in which case it tends to indicate that other views and opinions are not wanted or will be ignored. Halo effect, Handshaking, Hammer fist, Haptics, etc.
Sometimes the body language is a cry for attention and it is important to baseline the situation so that you are not a victim of the law of reaction. Learning how to read body language can take some time and whether it is to learn for fun or for business this is the best place to learn using this home study course.
As always I would like to thank you in advance for your comments and or questions about reading the body language of tapping feet. Body language expert Scott Sylvan Bell explains the body language of tapping feet: People ask about it, but I have no response other than that. Good to know it could mask lying, I should stop when I start going to job interviews. Mark Hogan Do you know how much reading body language can help you? Good video, specially about nervous body language tips.
Octavio Cintas Porta Credenciales. It seems that setting or finding the baseline is extremely crucial in being able to properly read body language. Wendy Kettlebells, Chiropractic, and Back Pain. Good points about the body language of tapping feet.
Michael Thorne Smith movies. I never knew tapping your feet could be indicative of lying. Thanks, Suzanne Aging and Driving. Your body language reader post reminds me of the Diane Keaton movie Baby Talk or something like that from the late s. Her Wall Street Investment Banker persona had a nervous bleed through leak of foot tapping! My brother was doing that tonigth for dinner!
I asked him and he said he was doing it for no reason. Dejar de fumar sin Ansiedad y sin Engordar. I never thought about the fact that some people use nervous ticks to mask their true reactions. Very interesting and useful information! I personally tap my feet when I am bored or inpatient. But i cannot really tell. May be there are other reasons I am not aware of. I had never before given much thought to what it could mean if someone was tapping their feet…but I will now!
I used to do that all the time in high school. I think it was just extra energy I was trying to spend. Your email address will not be published. Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. Mirroring in this conscious sense is not simply copying or mimicking. Mirroring is effective when movements and gestures are reflected in a similar way so that the effect remains unconscious and subtle.
Obvious copying would be regarded as strange or insulting. Lots of unnecessary friction is created in work and communications situations due to ignorance and lack of thought about seating positions. The 'science' of where people sit in relation to each other, and on what and around what, is fascinating and offers opportunities for improving relationships, communications, cooperation and understanding. These points are generally for the purpose of a leader or someone aspiring to lead, or coach, counsel, etc.
They also relate to one-to-one situations like appraisals, interviews, etc. Sitting opposite someone creates a feeling of confrontation. For one-to-one meetings, especially with emotional potential appraisals for example take care to arrange seating before the meeting to avoid opposite-facing positions. Do not place chairs so close together that personal space will be invaded. Sitting opposite someone across a table or desk adds a barrier to the confrontational set-up and can create a tension even when the relationship is good and strong.
It's easy to forget this and to find yourself sitting opposite someone when there are only two of you at the table. Sitting opposite across a table is okay for lovers gazing into each other's eyes, but not good for work, counselling, coaching, etc.
This seating arrangement will increase the defensiveness of anyone already feeling insecure or inferior. This positioning is favoured by certain bosses seeking to reinforce their power, but it is not helpful in most modern work situations, and is not a good way to increase respectful natural authority anyway. Incidentally the expression 'on the carpet' - meaning being told off or 'bollocked' - derives from the extreme form of this positional strategy, when the victim, called into the office would stand to receive their bollocking on the carpet in front of the boss who sat high and mighty behind his desk.
Sitting at a diagonal angle of about 45 degrees to another person is a comfortable and cooperative arrangement. This is achieved naturally by both sitting around the same corner of a square table, which also enables papers to be seen together without too much twisting. The same angle is appropriate for and easy-chairs around a coffee-table. A table ceases to become a barrier when people are sitting at a diagonal angle, instead it becomes a common work surface for studying papers, or exploring issues together.
Sitting side by side on a settee is not a good arrangement for working relationships. It threatens personal space, and obstructs communications. Low settees and easy-chairs and low coffee tables cause people to sink and relax back are usually unhelpful for work meetings. For this reason much seating in hotel lounges is entirely unsuitable for work meetings. People naturally are more alert and focused using higher formal table and chairs.
Interviews and appraisals can benefit from relaxed or more formal seating depending on the situation. Importantly - make a conscious choice about furniture depending on the tone of the meeting, and how relaxed you want the meeting to be.
The degree rule is approximate, and anyway under most circumstances seating angles are influenced by furniture and available space. Importantly, simply try to avoid opposite or side-by-side positions. An angle between these two extremes is best - somewhere in the range of degrees if you want to be technical about it.
Round tables are better than square or oblong tables for group and team meetings. Obviously this works well because no-one is at the head of the table, which promotes a feeling of equality and teamwork. King Arthur - or the creator of the legend King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table - opted for a round table for this reason. The term 'round table' has come to symbolise teamwork and fairness, etc.
Unfortunately round tables aren't common in offices, which means thinking carefully about best seating arrangements for square or oblong tables. A confident leader will be happy to avoid taking the 'head of the table' position, instead to sit among the team, especially if there are particular reasons for creating a cooperative atmosphere. Conversely it is perfectly normal for a leader to take the 'head of the table' if firmness is required in chairing or mediating, etc.
It is usually easier to chair a meeting from the head of the table position. Theory suggests that when a group sits around a table the person sitting on the leader's right will generally be the most loyal and aligned to the leader's thinking and wishes. A likely mythical origin is said to be that in Roman times a leader would place their most loyal supporter to their right because this was the most advantageous position from which to attempt an assassination by stabbing given that most people then as now were right-handed.
Assassination by stabbing is rare in modern work meetings, so positioning an opponent on your right side instead of allowing the normal opposite positioning to happen can be a useful tactic since this indicates confidence and strength. In large gatherings of people or more, a 'top table' is often appropriate for the leader and guest speakers. While this seems like a throwback to more autocratic times, it is perfectly workable. Therefore seating arrangements for large groups should provide a clear position of control for the chairperson or event leaders.
I welcome refinements and additions to this section. It is also seen as respectful practice. Incidentally on this point, sideways head-shaking of this sort is not a vigorous twisting movement; it is usually more of a sideways tilting of the head from one side to the other. This point thanks R Fox concerns eye contact. Eye contact other than unwanted staring is generally regarded as a positive aspect of body language in Western cultures, which in this context typically refers to white European people and descendents.
A specific difference regarding eye contact can be found in some black Caribbean cultures however, whereby young people tend to be instructed not look at someone eye to eye when being told off or disciplined. When cultures meet obviously this provides potential for friction, given the 'Western' expectation in such situations, for example, "Look at me when I'm talking to you".
In some Australian Aboriginal cultures, it is disrespectful to look an elder, or person of a rank above you, in the eyes. It is a sign of respect to drop your eyes, whereas in Western culture not meeting somebody's gaze is commonly considered to be a negative sign, indicating deceit, lying, lack of attention, lack of confidence, etc. In Arab countries the thumbs-up gesture is rude. Feet are considered 'inferior' parts of the body compared with the dignity of the face.
In Arab culture the left hand and right hands have religious connotations which generally dictate that the left hand is not used for touching for example shaking hands or eating. Arab handshaking tends to be more frequent and less firm - on meeting and departing, even several times in the same day.
The eyebrow flash may be considered rude or to carry sexual connotations in Japanese culture. Informal male-female touching is less common and can be considered improper in Japan.
The American-style 'OK' sign - a circle made with thumb and index-finger with other fingers fanned or outstretched - is a rude gesture in some cultures, notably Latin America, Germany and the Middle East. Beckoning gestures in Eastern cultures are commonly made with the palm down, whereas Western beckoning is generally palm up. In Japan the male bow is still commonly used, when the depth of the bow increases with the amount of respect shown, and is therefore a signal of relative status between two people.
In The Netherlands people touch the temple with the index finger in order to indicate someone or an action is smart or intelligent. Touching the forehead with the index finger means someone or an action is stupid or crazy. In Russia these meanings are reversed. I welcome refinements and additions for body language in other cultures. Of course lots of flirting, and more, goes on at work, but for the purposes of this article it's easier to keep the two situations separate. There are some differences which can completely change the nature of a signal given in a sexual context.
Sitting opposite someone is an example, which is confrontational at work, but is often intimate and enabling for sexual and romantic relationships: Personal space must also be considered in a different way in social-sexual situations compared to work and non-sexual situations: At work, the primary consideration is given to respecting the personal zones and not invading closer than the situation warrants.
In a sexual flirting context however, personal space becomes the arena for ritual and play, and within reason is more of a game than a set of fixed limits. Dancing is further example of how body language operates at a different level in sexual-social situations. Different tolerances and tacit implied permissions apply. It's a ritual and a game which humans have played for thousands of years.
This is also known as the Hierarchy of Effects, since steps must be successfully completed in order to achieve the sale at the end. For example, nothing happens without first attracting attention, a point commonly ignored by people looking for a mate.
The attention stage is even more critical in crowded and highly competitive environments such as nightclubs and dating websites. And while not technically part of body language, environment is a vital aspect of dating and mating. People seeking a mate are effectively marketing themselves.
Commonly people head to where everyone else goes - to nightclubs and dating websites - but crucially these environments are highly unsuitable markets for many people, for instance those not good at dancing, and those not good at writing and communicating online.
Just as a business needs to find the best markets and ways of reaching its target audience, so in dating people can seek environments where they can best display their strengths and where relevant 'buyers' will be. Females have very many more ways of attracting attention to themselves than males, and so are able to express interest and availability in far more ways than males tend to do.
Female interest in males is relatively selective. Male interest in females is by comparison constant and indiscriminate. This is due fundamentally to human mating behaviour, evolved over many thousands of years, in which essentially women control the chase and the choice, and men respond primarily to female availability and permissions. These differences in behaviour perhaps mainly exist because females produce one viable egg per month, about in a lifetime, whereas males make several hundred sperm every day.
Do the math, as they say. As with interpreting body language generally, beware of concluding anything based on a single signal. Clusters of signals are more reliable. Foot pointing, knee pointing, and leg-crossing signals can all be due simply to comfort, rather than expressions of interest or sexual appeal.
Aside from the specific flirting and sexual attraction signs below, females also express interest using the general signalling explained in the earlier sections, e. Here are the most common female flirting body language signals and meanings, according to experts on the subject:. Crowded environments distort the personal space rules, where implied permissions e. When employed flirtatiously, female leg crossing and uncrossing also has obvious sexual connotations and stimulates basic urges in males.
Pouting displays various emotions, not always a sexual one, for example projection of the lower lip indicates upset. An attraction pout looks more like the initial forming of a kiss. When considering body language in such detail, remember that males and females rely greatly on conversation and verbal communication to determine mutual attraction as soon as the situation allows.
Body language in flirting can be significant in indicating a strong match, but just as easily can merely be an initial filtering stage which progresses no further because other infinitely variable personal or situational criteria on either or both sides are not met. Also bear in mind that a lot of flirting happens for fun with no intention of proceeding to sexual or romantic attachment. The purpose of this page is chiefly to explain body language signals, not to explain human relationships.
As stated earlier there are reasons for the relative sparseness of male signals compared to female flirting signals.
Most men are interested perpetually in most women, and therefore male signals are generally designed to attract the attention of any females, rather than directed at one female in particular.
Male interest is basically always switched on and ready to respond to opportunity when female availability and interest are signalled and noticed. The most prevalent signals males use to announce their availability and attract female attention are summarised below. Under many circumstances these might be categorised under the headings 'pathetic' or 'amusing'.
The male of the species, despite a couple of million years of evolution, has yet to develop much subtle body language in this area. Answers on a postcard please. Tattoos have dramatically altered in society's perceptions in the past generation.
Previously considered indicative of lower class, lower intellect, sailors, soldiers, builders, etc. Tattoos have been a significant part of human customs for thousands of years. They are decorative, and also in evolutionary terms suggested strength and machismo, since the process of obtaining them was painful and even life-threatening.
Certain females are attracted by tattoos on men, especially extensive markings. It's a drastic step to improve one's love life, but worthy of note, because the subject is not as simple and negative as traditionally regarded. Tattoos are significant attention-grabbers, and given the variety of subjects featured, also provide interesting talking points. With the exception perhaps of pogo-ing and head-banging most dance styles replicate sexual movements - lots of rhythmic hip and leg work, contorted facial expressions, sweating and occasional grunting, etc.
For those blessed with a level of coordination dancing offers an effective way of attracting attention, especially in crowded competitive situations. For the less rhythmic, the lesson is to find a different environment. The initial stages of a usually male-female sexual relationship are commonly represented as quite a structured process, summarised below.
Flirting is a common modern term for the early stages of courtship, or the beginnings of extra-marital affairs, which is misleading since most flirting happens for fun and rarely progresses beyond non-sexual touching. Significantly, women are said generally make the first move - by signalling interest through establishing eye contact, and then confusingly for men, looking away. The process can disintegrate at any moment, often before it begins, because most men are too interested in themselves or the bloody football on the pub telly to notice the eye contact.
Where the process reaches past the first stage, here broadly is how it is said by body language experts to unfold:.
A generation ago this process took a little longer than it does today. Alcohol accelerates things even more. You'll see variations of the above sequence in body language books, and no doubt in real life too. Males tend to react to obvious signs of availability shown by females but miss many subtle signals. Females give lots of subtle signals, tend not to repeat them too often, and infer lack of interest in a male failing to respond. Although now rare in Western society bowing and curtseying are interesting because they illustrate the status and relationship aspects of body language, which are so significant in one-to-one situations.
Bending the upper body downwards towards another person or group is a signal of appreciation or subservience. The bow was in olden times a standard way for men to greet or acknowledge another person of perceived or officially higher status. The bow is also a gesture of appreciation and thanks which survives in entertainment and performance.
Male bowing traditionally varied from a modest nod of the head, to a very much more pronounced bend of the body from the hips. Depth of bend reflects depth of respect or appreciation. For added dramatic effect the feet may be moved tightly together. A very traditional Western bow involves a deeper bend combined with the normally right-leg pushing backwards or 'scraping' on the ground, hence the expression 'bowing and scraping'.
The effect can be augmented by the bower's hand pressing horizontally on the stomach, and the other arm extended, or sweeping extravagantly in a circular motion, made all the more dramatic if combined with removing a hat. Such behaviour is rare outside of Christmas pantomimes these days, however interestingly even in modern times you will see men slightly nodding their heads in an involuntary 'semi-bow' when meeting a person and wishing to show respect or admiration.
As such, the small nod or bow of a head can be a clue to perceived seniority in relationships. Bowing has long been more significant and complex in Eastern cultures, where the gesture carries a similar deferential meaning, albeit it within more formal protocols and traditions. The fundamental body language of bowing is rooted in showing subservience by lowering one's gaze and body, literally putting the bower at a lower level than the other person. Bowing remains significant in Japanese culture.
A curtsey is a bend of the knees, combined with a slight bow of the head, and sometimes a lifting of the skirt or dress at each side, at knee-height, by both hands. This skirt-lift dates from olden times when this prevented a long skirt from touching wet or muddy ground.
The female curtsey gesture survives in traditional situations such as meeting royalty, or ending a stage or dance performance, in which you might see an older more flamboyant and deeper curtsey entailing one knee bending sideways and the other leg bending behind. Curtseying has effectively now been replaced by handshaking, although as with male bowing it is possible sometimes to see small head bows by women when meeting and shaking hands with someone regarded as superior or important.
Bowing and curtseying as conscious intentional gestures have effectively disappeared from Western behaviour, but importantly people's body language continues to give much smaller unconscious signals which can be linked to these old formal gestures and their meanings. This is not an exhaustive collection of body language terminology - just a summary of the main and most interesting definitions.
The posture is called the American leg cross because of its supposed popularity in the US compared to the UK, notably among males. The word anthropology is from Greek anthropos meaning human being. Anthropology, like psychology and ethnology and ethology, is a science which over-arches the study of body language, and provides useful and for serious students, essential context for understanding the reasons and purposes of body language.
Anthropology has been studied one way or another for thousands of years and became established under that name in the s.
The Human Genome project, which basically mapped the human genetic code started , completed in , and ongoing is probably the largest anthropological study ever performed.
Involuntary in the sense that it is virtually impossible to control these signals because they are controlled by the very basic part of the brain responsible for our most basic bodily functions. Breathing rate is perhaps the exception, which while in many cases will speed as a physiological response to stress, can often be controlled and slowed or deepened given suitable conscious effort. Regarded as a signal of reluctance or readiness to depart.
This is a widely used term in psychology and the effect arises very commonly in relationships and communications. Conflicting body language signals can sometimes indicate this attitude or reaction in a person. Courtship in olden times broadly since the middle ages up until the mid-late s referred to quite formal steps of increasing familiarity between male and female, through to intimacy, perhaps with a little touching of hands or kissing, and lots of going out for walks and visits to the cinema or theatre, etc.
Sex might not rear its scary head for weeks, months or years; and sometimes, especially if the female was from an elite or religiously obsessed family, not until the wedding night. Nowadays 'courtship' is a much speedier affair and among modern young people can be started, fully consummated and effectively forgotten in a matter of minutes. The word erogenous derives from Eros, the Greek god of love Cupid is Roman , from which the word erotic also derives.
Erogenous zones contain high concentration of nerve endings and are significant in flirting and sex. Aside from the obvious genital areas and bottoms and breasts, erogenous zones include necks, inner side of arms and wrists, armpits and lips. Incidentally the G in G-spot is named after Ernst Grafenberg a German-born gynaecological doctor and scientist who as well as being an expert on the female orgasm, was first to invent and commercially market a IUD intrauterine device or coil for female birth control.
Ethnology is a branch of anthropology, concerned with ethnic effects, and where this involves behaviour it certainly relates to body language. The word ethnology is derived from Greek ethnos meaning nation. The modern study and awareness of ethnology is arguably hampered by sensitivities around racism. Ethnic differences between people obviously exist, and ironically where over-sensitivity to racism and equality obstructs debate, society's understanding of these issues remains clouded and confused.
The word ethology first appeared in English in the late s, derived from the Greek word ethos meaning character or disposition. Ethology became properly established during the early s. Austrian zoologist and Nobel Prizewinner Konrad Lorenz was a founding figure. Desmond Morris, author of The Naked Ape, is an ethologist. So is the evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins. Charles Darwin's work pioneered much ethological thinking.
An eyebrow flash can therefore also be a signal of positive interest. The word haptics in this sense entered the English language in the s, which indicates when human touch began to be a serious area of study. Hybrid expressions provide further emphasis of the need to avoid reading single signals. Combinations of signals and context are necessary, especially to make sense of hybrid expressions which contain different meanings.
The word kinesics was first used in English in this sense in the s, from the Greek word kinesis, meaning motion. The word labial in phonetics means closure or part closure of the mouth, and additionally refers to the resulting vowel sounds produced, like w, oo, etc.
When a person's signals are mirrored the unconscious mind thinks, "This person is like me and agrees with the way I am. Pacing refers to the mirroring of someone's speed of movements. Phallic refers to something which looks like or represents a penis, often called a phallic symbol. Phallic symbols are prevalent in psychology and aspects of flirting or sexual body language.
The female equivalent term is a yonic symbol, from yoni, Hindu for vulva and a symbolic circular stone representing divine procreation. Yoni was originally an old Sanskrit word, meaning source or womb.
Physiognomy refers to facial features and expressions which indicate the person's character or nature, or ethnic origin. The word and much of the fundamental theory was devised by Edward Twitchell Hall, an American anthropologist in the late s and early s. The pupil generally enlarges dilates in the dark, and contracts in brightness.
Enlarged pupils are also associated with desire and allure. Enlarged pupils are not a symptom of smoking drugs as commonly believed. This is probably a confusion arising from the fact that conditions are relatively dark when such judgements are made.
From Latin word meaning 'open mouth'. Various meanings very dependant on context and other signals. The term is slang really, not technical.
For terminology to become casually 'hip' in this way reflects the mainstream appeal of body language as a subject. May be conscious and formal as in bowing, or unconscious as in slightly lowering the head and stance. Synchronizing is technically more appropriate since it naturally includes audible signals voice pace and pitch, etc , whereas the mirroring term normally makes people think of visual signals only.
The principles of synchronized body language definitely include audible signals in addition to physical visual signs. The author Roger E Axtell writes entertainingly and informatively about international body language and behaviours. Words themselves convey their own meaning, which is another subject, not least when we think about vocabulary, grammar, word-choice, etc. But what about all the other noises and silences from people's mouths?
Other audible signals which are not generally regarded as part of body language or non-verbal communications include for example:. All of this audible signalling happens for a purpose. We might not easily know what the purpose is, but being aware of it is the start of being able to understand it better, in others, and possibly also in ourselves. Commonly the more noticeable unnecessary signals are embellishments or defensiveness - a kind of showing-off or protection.
Other aspects can be more subtle indicators of social background or aspiration, and thereby of relationship and attitude towards other people. These other audible signals represent a big and complex area which seems yet to have been researched and analysed to the extent that body language has.
Also cultural differences are potentially influential, which hinders translation and specific interpretation. Despite this, initially simply being aware of these signals will begin to shape an appreciation of their significance, and in many cases their underlying meanings.
The style and nature of our written and vocal expressions inevitably provide a reflection of our feelings and personality. About us Contact us Shop. Back to course 0.
Body Language How to read body language signs and gestures - non-verbal communications - male and female, for work, social, dating, and mating relationships. Table of contents 1. How to read body language signs and gestures - non-verbal communications - male and female, for work, social, dating, and mating relationships 1. Body language index 1. Body language warning 1. Body language - basics and introduction 1. Body language is more than body positions and movements 1.
Body language definitions 1. Body language - background and history 1. Body language and evolution 1. The six universal facial expressions - recognized around the world 1. Body language analysis 1. Body language is relative to age and gender 1. Boredom, nervousness and insecurity signals 1. Body language - translation of gestures, signs and other factors - quick reference guide 1. Body language signs translation 1. Eyes - body language 1. Mouth - body language 1.
Head - body language 1. Arms - body language 1. Hands - body language 1. Handshakes - body language 1. Legs and feet - body language 1. Mirroring - matching body language signals 1. Body language of seating positioning in relation to others 1.
Body language in different cultures 1. Flirting, courtship, dating and mating - sexual body language 1. Female indications of interest in a male 1. Male interest in females 1. Stages of courtship 1. Bowing and curtseying body language 1. Body language glossary 1. Body language references sources and books 1. Body language goes both ways: Your own body language reveals your feelings and meanings to others.
Other people's body language reveals their feelings and meanings to you. The sending and receiving of body language signals happens on conscious and unconscious levels.
Body language index introduction and basics body language definitions background and history nature or nurture? No single body language sign is a reliable indicator. Depending on context this can indicate lying, but in other circumstances, for example, storytelling to a child, this would be perfectly normal. Looking right and down indicates accessing feelings, which again can be a perfectly genuine response or not, depending on the context, and to an extent the person.
Whether the 'facts' memories are correct is another matter. Left downward looking indicates silent self-conversation or self-talk, typically in trying to arrive at a view or decision. Context particularly- and other signals - are important for interpreting more specific meaning about this signal. A reassuring sign if signalled when the person is recalling and stating facts. This therefore could indicate recalling what has been said by another person. Widened eyes with raised eyebrows can otherwise be due to shock, but aside from this, widening eyes represents an opening and welcoming expression.
If the signal is accompanied by a long pronounced blink, this tends to support the tiredness interpretation. Darkness causes pupils to dilate. So too, for some reason does seeing something appealing or attractive. The cause of the attraction depends on the situation. In the case of sexual attraction the effect can be mutual - dilated pupils tend to be more appealing sexually that contracted ones, perhaps because of an instinctive association with darkness, night-time, bedtime, etc.
Resist the temptation to imagine that everyone you see with dilated pupils is sexually attracted to you. Significantly more than this is a sign of excitement or pressure. Blink rate can increase to up to a hundred times a minute. Blink rate is not a reliable sign of lying.
An infrequent blink rate is probably due to boredom if the eyes are not focused, or can be the opposite - concentration - if accompanied with a strongly focused gaze. Infrequent blink rate can also be accompanied by signals of hostility or negativity, and is therefore not the most revealing of body language signals. It is a common signal of greeting and acknowledgement, and is perhaps genetically influenced since it is prevalent in monkeys body language study does not sit entirely happily alongside creationism.
Fear and surprise are also signalled by the eyebrow flash, in which case the eyebrows normally remain raised for longer, until the initial shock subsides. The fuss was made because a wink is quite an intimate signal, directed exclusively from one person to another, and is associated with male flirting. It is strange that a non-contact wink can carry more personal implications than a physical handshake, and in many situations more than a kiss on the cheek.
A wink is given additional spice if accompanied by a click of the tongue. Not many people can carry it off. Additionally - and this was partly the sense in which Bush used it - a wink can signal a shared joke or secret.
This typically indicates suppressed displeasure or forced agreement of some sort. The smiler has a secret they are not going to share, possibly due to dislike or distrust. Can also be a rejection signal. The jaw is dropped lower than in a natural smile, the act of which creates a smile. Bear in mind that people cry for reasons of genuine upset, or to avert attack and seek sympathy or kind treatment. In terms of body language genuine laughter is a sign of relaxation and feeling at ease.
Natural laughter can extend to all the upper body or whole body. The physiology of laughter is significant. Pain and stress reduces. Also vulnerabilities show and can become more visible because people's guard drops when laughing. Artificial laughter is a signal of cooperation and a wish to maintain empathy. Otherwise however can simply be to freshen breath, or as a smoking replacement. The pen is the teat. Remember that next time you chew the end of your pen Can also indicate anxiousness or impatience at not being able to speak.
Or quite differently can indicate upset, as if suppressing crying. The gesture may be extremely subtle. An extreme version may be accompanied by a wrinkling of the nose, and a squint of the eyes. The gesture is reminiscent of the 'speak no evil' wise monkey.
The action can be observed very clearly in young children when they witness something 'unspeakably' naughty or shocking. Extreme versions of the same effect would involve both hands. Later nail-biting becomes reinforced as a comforting habit, again typically prompted by frustration or fear.
Stress in this context is an outcome. Stress doesn't cause nail-biting; nail-biting is the outward demonstration of stress. The cause of the stress can be various things stressors. Nodding is confusingly and rather daftly also referred to as 'head shaking up and down'. Head nodding when talking face-to-face one-to-one is easy to see, but do you always detect tiny head nods when addressing or observing a group?
As with all body language signals you must look for clusters of signals rather than relying on one alone. Look at the focus of eyes to check the validity of slow head nodding. Fast head nodding is rather like the 'wind-up' hand gesture given off-camera or off-stage by a producer to a performer, indicating 'time's up - get off'.
Head tilting is thought by some to relate to 'sizing up' something, since tilting the head changes the perspective offered by the eyes, and a different view is seen of the other person or subject.
Exposing the neck is also a sign of trust. Head forward and upright is different to head tilted downward. Obvious of course, but often ignored or missed where the movement is small, especially in groups seemingly reacting in silent acceptance.
This is an immensely powerful signal and is used intentionally by some people to dominate others. Head down when responding to criticism is a signal of failure, vulnerability hence seeking protection , or feeling ashamed. Hence the expressions such as 'don't let your head drop', and 'don't let your head go down', especially in sports and competitive activities.
Head down also tends to cause shoulders and upper back to to slump, increasing the signs of weakness at that moment. Holding the chin up naturally alters the angle of the head backwards, exposing the neck, which is a signal of strength, resilience, pride, resistance, etc.
A pronounced raised chin does other interesting things to the body too - it tends to lift the sternum breast-bone , which draws in air, puffing out the chest, and it widens the shoulders. These combined effects make the person stand bigger.
An exposed neck is also a sign of confidence. The head and face are seen to respond fittingly and appropriately to what is being said by the speaker. Nodding is relevant to what is being said. Smiles and other expressions are relevant too. The head may tilt sideways. Silences are used to absorb meaning.
The eyes remain sharply focused on the eyes of the speaker, although at times might lower to look at the mouth, especially in male-female engagements. This can be due to various causes, ranging from severe animosity or concern to mild boredom or being too tired to be interested and attentive. Crossed arms is a commonly exhibited signal by subordinates feeling threatened by bosses and figures of authority. People also cross arms when they are feeling cold, so be careful not to misread this signal.
Self-hugging is an attempt to reassure unhappy or unsafe feelings. Men tend not to. It's a 'barrier' protective signal, and also self-hugging. Another 'barrier' protective signal. A common gesture with various meanings around a main theme of openness. Can also mean "I don't have the answer," or an appeal.
An easily faked gesture to convey innocence. Outward open forearms or whole arms are more extreme versions of the signal. The signal is one of 'weighing' possibilities. Hand on heart can be proactive, as when a salesman tries to convince a buyer, or reactive, as when claiming innocence or shock.
Whatever, the sender of this signal typically feels the need to emphasise their position as if mortally threatened, which is rarely the case. Commonly adults do this to young people. Adult to adult it is generally unacceptable and tends to indicate a lack of social awareness or self-control aside from arrogance on the part of the finger pointer.
The finger is thought to represent a gun, or pointed weapon. Strongly associated with anger, directed at another person. Like when a computer or elevator won't work, as if pressing the button lots of times will make any difference.. Logically a clenched fist prepares the hand and mind and body for battle of one sort or another, but in isolation the signal is impossible to interpret more precisely than a basic feeling of resolve.
In this gesture only the fingertips touch - each finger with the corresponding digit of the other hand, pointing upwards like the rafters of a tall church roof. Fingers are spread and may be rigidly straight or relaxed and curved.
Alternating the positions pushing fingers together then relaxing again - like a spider doing press-ups on a mirror enables the fascinating effect nothing to do with body language , which after enough repetition can produce a sensation of having a greased sheet of glass between the fingers.
Try it - it's very strange. Very brainy people probably don't do this because they have more important things to think about. The action is one of suppressing or holding down a rising pressure.
Teachers use this gesture when trying to quieten a class. Meaning depends on context. No-one knows still exactly how the noise is made, but the notion that the practice leads to arthritis is now generally thought to be nonsense.
The signal may be to oneself quietly, or more pronounced directed to others. There is also the sense of this suggesting something being 'just right' as if the finger and thumb are making a fine adjustment with a pinch of spice or a tiny turn of a control knob.
The circle formed by the joined finger and thumb resembles the O from OK. The remaining three fingers are spread. It's a very positive signal. Two hands is a bigger statement of the same meaning.
Rightly or wrongly the thumbs up and down signals are associated with the gladiatorial contests of the ancient Roman arenas in which the presiding dignitary would signal the fate of the losing contestants.
Also thumbs are potent and flexible tools, so disabling them logically reduces a person's readiness for action. Can also indicate mild embellishment or fabrication. The children's story about Pinocchio the wooden puppet boy whose nose grew when he told lies reflects long-standing associations between the nose and telling lies.
Often exhibited when recounting an event or incident. Pinching the nose physically obstructs breathing and speech, especially if the mouth is covered at the same time. Rather like the more obvious hand-clamp over the mouth, people displaying this gesture probably have something to say but are choosing not to say it yet. When observed, nose-picking can signify various states of mind, none particularly positive.
The gesture is occasionally seen by a person doing the talking, in which case it tends to indicate that other views and opinions are not wanted or will be ignored. People who display this signal are commonly assessing or evaluating next actions, options, or reactions to something or someone. If the resting is heavier and more prolonged, and the gaze is unfocused or averted, then tiredness or boredom is a more likely cause.
A lighter resting contact is more likely to be evaluation, as is lightly resting the chin on the knuckles. Normally the supporting elbow will be on a table or surface. The middle finger commonly rests horizontally between chin and lower lip. Who knows - whatever, the signal is generally due to doubting or distrusting what is being said. Observable in various situations, notably sport, and less pronounced poses in social and work situations.
In social and flirting context it is said that the hands are drawing attention to the genital area. Those who stand with hands in pockets - in situations where there is an expectation for people to be enthusiastic and ready for action - demonstrate apathy and lack of interest for the situation. Other alerting signals include raising the hand, taking a breath, moving upwards and forwards in their seat, etc. The 'air violin' is not typically included in body language guides; it's here as an amusing gesture which demonstrates our conscious practice and recognition of certain signals.
Insulting gesture if directed at a person, typically male to male, since it mimics masturbation, like calling a person a 'tosser' or a 'wanker' UK or a jerk-off US. This is obviously rude and not used in respectable company such as the queen or a group of clergymen. The gesture is also used as a response to something regarded as poor quality, which might be a performance or piece of work or a comment on a product of some sort. The allusion is to masturbation being a poor substitute for sex with a woman, and that those who masturbate are not 'real men'.
Unsurprisingly the gesture is mainly male, directed at other males, especially in tribal-like gatherings. Rare female use of this gesture directed at males can be very effective due to its humiliating value.
For obvious reasons the gesture is unlikely to be used by females or males directed at females. How all this ultimately translates into the subsequent relationship and outcomes can depend on more significant factors than the handshake.
There is a sense of attempting to transfer energy and enthusiasm, literally, from the vigorous handshaker to the shaken person, hence the behaviour is popular in motivational folk and evangelists, etc. Weak handshakes can be due to various aspects of personality, mood, etc. People who use their hands in their profession, for example, musicians, artists, surgeons, etc.
Strong but passive people can have gentle handshakes. Old people can have weak handshakes. A weak handshake might be due to arthritis.
Young people unaccustomed to handshaking can have weak handshakes. It's potentially a very misleading signal. Firm handshakes are a sign of outward confidence, which could mask deceit or a weak bullying nature, or indicate a strong solid person.
Imsges: body language in dating
Commonly the more noticeable unnecessary signals are embellishments or defensiveness - a kind of showing-off or protection. The pen is the teat. Body language is relative to age and gender 1.
Of course lots of flirting, and more, goes on at work, but for the purposes of this article it's easier to keep the two situations separate.
Some will explain that a person with the palms of their hands up is a dating websites for friendship of honesty or it could just be part of the shoulder shrug. Rightly or wrongly the thumbs up and down signals are associated with the gladiatorial contests dating sunbury the ancient Roman arenas in which the presiding dignitary would signal the fate of the losing contestants. The head and face are seen to respond fittingly and appropriately to what is being said by the speaker. Arguably this last point should be encompassed by body language, because a lot happens here which can easily be missed if we consider merely the spoken word and the traditional narrow definition of body language or non-verbal communications. If the knee points towards a person then it signifies interest in or enthusiasm for that person; if it body language in dating away from a person it signifies disinterest in or a perceived threat from that person. Crossed arms represent a protective body language in dating separating barrier.
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