Being able to understand and use nonverbal communication is a great tool that will help you connect with others, express what you really mean, be proactive in challenging situations, and build better relationships at home and work. No one really understands just how important nonverbal communication can really be. Some people may think that communicating through words is the most important type of communication, but when it comes down to it, being able to express yourself through body language is what helps your words create a deeper meaning.

Perfect example. You are interviewing for a job and you are nervous, you are sweating and stuttering while answering your questions. Your interviewer will more than likely toss your resume off to the side and consider the interviewee who seemed confident, calm, cool and collected.

There are 7 types of nonverbal communication: facial expressions, body movement and posture, gestures, eye contact, touch, space and voice.

1) Facial expressions are extremely important. No matter how you may answer a question, your face is going to explain your answer more than your words. Try being honest, if you are asked a question tell how you are REALLY feeling instead of telling a white lie. If there is no avoiding it because you are scared of hurting feelings etc then try your hardest to keep a solemn face.

2) Body movement- keeping a straight posture, walking at the right pace and knowing how to sit the correct way are all important when it comes to nonverbal communication.

3)Gestures- when using gestures you must be careful. While people who “talk with their hands” may keep conversation more interesting it can sometimes be distracting. Try to keep hand gestures to a minimum in formal conversations.

4)Eye contact- This aspect of nonverbal communication is probably the most important. I do not know about you but I hate talking to people who do not look at me in the eyes. It is rude and it seems like they have no interest in what you are talking to them about. Make sure to look people in the eye when introducing yourself and when they are talking to you. Obviously do not stare at them intently as this would make them feel uncomfortable.

5)Touch- I would say that the only thing to really worry about when it comes to touch is having a firm handshake. My dad always told me that no one likes or respects a “limp noodle”. Grab their hand like you mean it. Do not give them a death grip but do give them a good shake, one they will not forget.

6)Space- when it comes to space you want to be sure that you do not get to close. People in todays world are very weird and protective of their “personal bubble”. Making sure that you give them that space will ensure them that you respect them.

7)Voice- maintaining a calm, cool, collected yet firm voice is important. Do not speak softly but do not yell. Be aware of your confidence and show it!

SOURCES:

Nonverbal Communication: The Power of Body Language

Communication Skills Training

Body Language and Nonverbal Communication

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