Body Language and Quick Case Study
I often use the picture to the left when talking with people about body language. You are looking at a picture of me the day before I gave birth to my beautiful daughter.
Stay tuned for further details about this picture and body language.
Coming across as confident in your conversation and body language — the result will make others feel comfortable with you. Being aware of your body language and others is like knowing a foreign language. A language that when understood, helps you read your clients and audiences better.
Here’s a case in point. Most people say when you cross your arms, it means you’re on the defensive. That may or may not be true depending on circumstances.
When you take a look at me in my ninth month of pregnancy, you’ll notice that I’m holding the fireplace with my right arm raised to hold onto the fireplace with my hand – probably attempting to stay balanced. And, my left arm is by my left side.
Being pregnant, only 5 feet tall and tipping the scale at almost two hundred pounds, I could not find many suitable positions for my arms.
There were only two spots of comfort for my arms:
- To put my hands by the side of my body in some fashion
- To cross my arms in front of chest resting them on my big baby belly
What does the above picture say about body language?
When speaking to groups and clients about body language, I like to use this picture to make this point: for some people, like pregnant women, they cross their arms not to be on the defensive; they just don’t have too many comfortable places to put their arms.
When it comes to body language, it’s important to look at people’s gestures in context of what is going on.
Some How-to’s of Body Language
When I work with clients and do speaking engagements, we discuss body language at length:
- How to read others
- How others read yours
- How to adapt your body language to what you are observing to ease any tension and move in the positive direction you want.
Good public speakers incorporate appropriate body language and gestures into their public speaking.
By the way, here’s another interesting post on body language from a past, yet important presidential election.