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Nonverbal communication speaks volumes. Our facial expressions, posture, eye contact, gait, and proximity to others all give valuable clues to who we are. Who do you want to be?

Body Language Matters

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Body language performs a number of functions. It can repeat a verbal message or contradict it. Gestures can accent, substitute or complement the spoken word.

There Are Several Ways A Person Signals

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  • Space: Personal space demonstrates everything from intimacy to aggression to dominance. It should be noted different cultures view personal space differently.
  • Eye Contact: The eyes are a crucial form of nonverbal communication. They show a wide range of emotions.
  • Eye contact is a basic way of maintaining communication and gauging responses.
  • Facial Expressions: Facial expressions are universal. Happiness, sadness, surprise, fear, disgust, and anger are feelings we humans all experience.
  • Body Movement: How you carry yourself speaks volumes. It’s that simple.
  • Gestures: They’re a worldwide phenomenon but vary vastly from culture to culture.
  • Touch: A lot is conveyed through this simple gesture. A pat on the back, a grip on your hand, or a warm bear hug all signal different feelings.
  • Voice: We’re not talking about what you say but how you say it. Timing, tone, inflection and volume all send messages to the receiver.

 

Be Aware

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Although nonverbal communication can’t be faked, it can be confusing. Here are a couple of ways to help you signal who you are.

  • Everyone has their own body language. Ask your friends what you convey.
  • What non-verbal communications do you admire? Start incorporating those into your day. For instance, a slow walk indicates approachability.

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