Did you just say something? No? You know what, it might have just been your hands, or the shape of your mouth, or even your eyes. Your body says a whole lot without you even trying. That’s the magic of body language, when actions literally speak louder than words. Welcome to another episode of Whack & Epified. This week we dive into the science behind nonverbal communication or as we know it, body language.
And how you can begin to read these signs better.. First of all, body language isn’t really a language. There is no grammar, no rules.. Some things don’t even mean the same thing to different people… So what are we talking about here? Taken along with what people say, little little body movements can reveal how they really feel. For example, folded arms is universally understood as a sign of a closed mind. Open palms, on the other hand, that’s an invitation to talk.. Gestures become even more important in the workplace.. While presenting your idea to an audience, people who use more space and bigger gestures are considered confident. On the flip side, fidgety hands and feet taps are a dead giveaway of nervousness. Facial microexpressions are an even clearer signal of how a person feels. As hard as we might try to hide our true thoughts and feelings, the mask does come off for a split second. There are seven universal microexpressions. Disgust, fear, happiness, sadness, hate, anger and surprise..
These are expressions that last for as little as 1/25th of a second… But they can be easily spotted. In fact, researchers have compiled a Facial Action Coding System, a list of human expressions broken down into action units, or muscle movements. It’s the first step in getting machines to recognize expressions… Scientists at Beilefeld University in Germany are also trying to build a robot bartender, who will look at your face and know when you need a drink.. That’s almost like the spouse we all would all like to have. Being able to read microexpressions accurately can help make your social interactions better..
Another crucial bit in social relationships are the haptics, or the science of touching.. A little pat here and a hi five there can be worth more than all kinds of congratulatory messages.. Touching, when used carefully, can subtly establish either dominance or convey a sign of affection… How close you choose to stand to someone also conveys a lot about you. People we are close to, well, are closer to us when we interact than people we don’t know… Edward T Hall actually created a diagram to show how relationship changes with distance… The study of body language has got even more scientific because cops realize that its the best way to catch criminals.
After torture techniques, they are now trying to spot facial twitches that show a criminal is lying. It’s all in the eyes, apparently. Police have devised a rough guide on how to tell if a person is lying. When people look to interviewer’s left and up, it indicates they are cooking up a story. But when they stare to the right and up, they are trying to remember something that actually happened.. Animals don’t lie, but they too convey feelings through body language.. And quite often, we get it totally wrong… For example, not every dog that wags its tail is happy to see you, nor does every dog who rolls on its back need a tummy rub… If your dog is wagging his tail more to his right, he’s not really happy..
He’s stressed out.. When the tail wag is more left sided, that means he likes you… Likewise, if your dog shows his teeth, it means its time to leave him totally alone… Body language is created and understood subconsciously, which weirdly makes it both, more trustworthy and more confusing… But you can’t really escape it, because 60% of our conversation take place through hidden gestures and expressions.. Understanding body language can help you be a better communicator.. You will be able to figure people’s motives and what they really mean when they say something.. Besides making sure they get your point clearly.. So look closer and listen more carefully.. It’s time to up your body language game.. That’s it from us this week on Whack & Epified.. Subscribe to our channel, share this video.. Tell us what your fingers want to say in the comment section below….