Communication can be enthralling. For most people, information exchange begins and ends with words. There are, however, numerous other factors to consider. The tone of voice used to say a phrase can completely change its meaning. It has the ability to turn insults into jokes and jokes into insults. Looking for body language indicators is another way to determine the true intentions of what someone is saying or doing.
Body language is a fascinating idea. Depending on the situation, the human body makes a variety of unconscious motions. Body language indicators can be blatant and obvious at times. If you see someone crying, it's likely that they're upset about something. Body language indicators aren't always obvious. For example, if they aren't facing you, you might miss someone rolling their eyes at you in mockery.
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There are numerous ways to interpret body language, as well as numerous body language indicators. We'll show you 20 of the most popular indicators down below. These are useful in almost any communication setting, including business, relationships, and even meeting new people.
1. How close do they get?
Physical proximity is a common body language indicator that many people overlook. If someone is at ease with you, they will not mind sitting or standing close to you. So, if you want to see if someone thinks you're okay, go brush shoulders with them. If they back down, you've got your answer!
2. Gloomy eyes
We'll go over a lot of head and eye body language indicators because they're among the most common and easily recognized. Downcast eyes have become popular, particularly among younger people. You've seen it, I've seen it, and everyone else has as well. When someone is unhappy and tries to hide it by, say, smiling, their ruse may be revealed by looking downward. This can also be a sign of being uneasy or embarrassed.
3. Agitated hands
Have you ever seen someone drumming their fingers on a desk or a chair? What about people drumming on their legs? This can indicate impatience, restlessness, and, in some cases, anger. If you're lecturing your children and they're drumming their fingers on the table, you're probably not getting through to them. When you're speaking with someone and they're doing this, it's time to change your strategy.
4. Agitated legs
This is almost identical to restless hands, except it affects the legs. People may repeatedly cross and uncross their legs, tap their foot, or even tap their heels. Have you ever noticed anyone pacing? Restless legs are all over the place! Restless leg syndrome can cause people to have restless legs that aren't accompanied by any feelings. Alternatively, they may have to pee really badly.
5. Place your hands on your hips
Listen up, guys, because this one is primarily for you. When someone has their hands on their hips, it indicates that they have run out of patience. They're probably also enraged. You're in big trouble if you walk up to your boss or significant other and they're standing with their hands on their hips. This one is like a proverbial punch in the gut in terms of body language indicators.
6. Cocking one's head has multiple meanings
When someone cocks their head, most people interpret it as a sign of confusion. This is not always true. People will get into each other's faces and cock their heads as a challenge in places where violence is prevalent, such as prisons or UFC fights.
7. Place your hands behind your back
This is the most ambiguous of the body language indicators on this list. For a variety of reasons, people place their hands behind their backs. In any mafia film, the Don is seen with his hands behind his back as a sign of power. Military personnel are taught to do so as a sign of respect. People will sometimes do it just to be cute. When this happens, you usually have to rely on other indicators to figure out what emotion is being displayed. It is still widely used.
8. Hands clenched into fists
This is yet another widely used indicator. Unlike the previous one, this one has a single meaning. When people are frustrated and angry, they engage in this behavior. This is usually a sign of impending violence, as balled-up firsts frequently result in something being punched or hit. When you're speaking with someone and their hands are balled up in fists, things can quickly go wrong.
This body language has a universal meaning, but it can vary greatly. When someone touches you nonviolently, it's almost universally assumed that they're at ease around you. It can, however, manifest in a variety of ways. Your boss may pat you on the back. Your boyfriend or girlfriend may place his or her head on your shoulder. When someone touches you, it indicates that they are at ease with you.
10. Crossed arms!
People frequently misinterpret what it means to cross one's arms. People interpret it to mean that someone is enraged. In fact, it is used as a defensive posture. People who cross their arms unconsciously defend themselves. They may no longer wish to speak, or they may be concealing something they do not wish to discuss. However, crossing one's arms indicates that the person is trying to comfort themselves, implying that they are uncomfortable.
11. Look up the word joy
What is the first thing an athlete does after winning a match, scoring a point, or doing something amazing? Look straight up most of the time. This is a sign of happiness, joy, and relief. True, people can look up when they are frustrated, but there are often other signs that they are frustrated before they look up. However, there is a reason why they say “chin up!”
This one is self-evident, but we're discussing popular body language indicators. When someone widens their eyes or raises their brows, it usually means they are surprised or shocked by something. There aren't any other explanations for why someone's eyes widen. So this one is not only very popular, but also very visible and easy to spot!
13. Looking for something more enjoyable to do
Boredom can be expressed in a variety of ways. Many times, they aren't trying to, but it just sort of comes out in different ways. When they are bored, one of their options is to look around. If you're talking to someone and they keep looking around, it means they're looking for something else to do other than talk to you. This is almost always a bad sign, especially if you're out at the bar talking to someone or, even worse, if you're in a board meeting at the office and everyone else is doing it.
Keep in mind that, now that smartphones are so popular, people may pull out their phone and check their social networking sites or email while you're talking to them. This essentially means the same thing.
14. The Stomp
This is mostly something children do, but adults are also prone to stomping around. It's usually done as an expression of rage, and most people associate it with that. However, there is a second reason people stomp, and that is to intimidate. Stomping toward someone can be used to frighten people or animals. How many times have owners stomped near their dogs in an attempt to scare them away?
15. Throat clearing
Clearing one's throat can be done for a variety of reasons. When you're sick, you might have some stuff stuck in your back. In a perfectly normal social situation, however, people frequently clear their throats when they are nervous or anxious. If no one is laughing at a stand-up comic's jokes, you'll notice them coughing or clearing their throat into the microphone. It is also used to express irritation in a second context. Most of the time, however, they are using it to demonstrate that they are uncomfortable in some way.
16. Protruding your chest means something
This is one that humans have learned from other animals on the planet. Proudly displaying one's chest is a sign of dominance and attraction. When men are trying to be intimidating or strong, they may jut out their chests. When they meet a woman they like, they frequently use this as body language. Women, you, too, are guilty of this, as you may jut out your chest to show off your assets.
They flip flop in terms of frequency. Men often jut their chest as an intimidation signal rather than to show attraction. Women use it more often to express attraction and less frequently to express intimidation. Both sexes use it for both.
17. Pay attention to how you walk
Body language does not only occur when you are sitting or standing still. Observing how people walk is often one of the most obvious, albeit less well-known, indicators of body language. People who walk quickly and purposefully appear more confident. Someone who is running is clearly in a rush to get somewhere (or get away from somewhere). Bad walking posture can indicate depression, while over-dramatic use of your limbs can indicate rage.
18. Putting your hands over your eyes
Closing your eyes has become a popular body language indicator thanks to today's sitcoms. People usually use it to express frustration, irritation, and impatience, as if they are mentally regrouping to deal with a problem again. But be cautious! People may be attempting to use it as a comedy tool as a result of its overuse in comedy scenarios. You can usually tell the difference.
19. Rubbing your eyes can send contradictory messages
If you're talking to someone and they take off their glasses, pinch the bridge of their nose, and rub their eyes, they're probably not pleased with what you just said. In general, this body language is used to express feelings of exhaustion. This is usually done from a young age, as children constantly rub their eyes when they are tired. When people reach adulthood, they frequently use body language to express their dissatisfaction with something.
So, who has fond memories of high school? Most people in high school were either staring or being stared at, so almost everyone is familiar with the stare. People stare for two reasons, believe it or not. The most obvious is attraction, as a man or woman may frequently gaze at someone they are attracted to. A lesser-known second reason people stare is to assert their dominance. If you are staring someone down and they are staring back, the person who breaks the stare is considered to be the less dominant one.
It was difficult to complete only 20 of these. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of different body language indicators available. The head, eyes, posture, torso, arms, legs, hands, and feet, as well as walking, talking with your hands, and pretty much every other movement your body makes, all have the potential to convey emotion. The main issue is that most people are unaware that body language can be so perceptive.
What's more amazing about body language is how it's used. You can use body language to determine whether or not someone you're attracted to is also attracted to you. In many cases, especially during job interviews, potential employers can read your body language to determine your level of confidence. To avoid sounding cliche, everyone, everywhere uses body language to express their true feelings. Actions, once you know what to look for, can literally speak louder than words.
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