Unveiling the Mystery of Body Language
It’s not what they reveal in their baseline behaviour, but the change from that behaviour to something quite different.
As a student of body language, people tend to ask me “what is my body language saying to you now?” They might cross their arms, or do something fairly common like that, then want me to basically give them a run-down on what that body language is revealing.
However, it doesn’t work like that. A lot of people think that by crossing their arms they are being defensive or closed off, and yes, that might be true. But that doesn’t really tell me much. Instead, it’s watching people that change from one behaviour to another that exposes what is actually going on.
That is why people in law enforcement talk so much about establishing baseline behaviour. It is crucial at any point if you’re wanting to find out if someone is lying or omitting something, that their baseline behaviour is first established. That way, when you go to the line of questioning you really want to address, you can immediately see a change of behaviour; and that’s what really gives it away.
Now, some people may ask, “well, if it’s that clear cut, then why doesn’t people in law enforcement immediately know if someone is guilty?”
Unfortunately, body language isn’t an exact science. Although, much can be revealed, people may still not know why that change occurred. But it can give an inkling that they need to dig further into that line of questioning.
So, how important is it to know more about body language? Well, 38% comes from vocal tone, while 55% comes from body language. It is even thought that at around 90% of our communication to others is through our body language, without even consciously knowing we are doing it.
A lot of people look for exaggerated displays of body language, but often, it is the subtle displays that are truly revealing.
Body language in relationships can even divulge what the other person is feeling. It may seem out of nowhere, your partner suddenly wants to end the relationship, while you didn’t even think there was a problem with the relationship. But think about it. Was your partner withdrawing? Does your partner sleep further away from you, or is less affectionate? Do they sit on another chair instead of being close to you? Intimacy seems to have gone out the window.
Although very subtle signs, they are also very telling, revealing that inwardly your partner is withdrawing; thus, revealing so in increasing the space between you. However, if this is recognised early on, you can then try to make changes to help the relationship, or at least be prepared for when the relationship is over.
In a dating situation, does the other person lean closer toward you when you speak? Are their hands on the table close to yours, or in their lap? Do their eyes dart around the room, or mainly stay focused on you? What about their feet? Are their feet pointed straight ahead towards you, or in another direction?
No matter how insignificant it may seem, never underestimate the small changes, words are only a very minor part of the overall picture.
Just by looking in one direction it can reveal someone is telling the truth, while another direction they are thinking up a story. Every little bit contributes to the overall picture.
And what may surprise many people, is that body language experts believe that the legs and feet are considered more accurate communicators than the face.
Think about it. What is your body language saying about you?