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What Your:Body Language Says About You

What does your body language say about you?

You may have the most impressive resume and keep pace with the current fashion but your body language depicts the real you, personally, professionally and socially.

Professionally, candidates for job interviews have been rejected on the basis of their body language. The industry seeks someone with strong character, integrity and self-confidence.

During an interview, do not cross your legs, just the ankles and tuck under the chair. Sit with each hand on the arm of the chair – this sends the message I am comfortable, self confident and open to suggestions.

Avoid folding your hands in your lap; it sends the message I am unable to think for myself and I am easily intimidated.

By the same token, the successful candidate has been known to decline a job offer because they were unimpressed with the Employer’s persona, as well.

Socially, it’s about fitting in. The attractive fashionista segment is merely window dressing; poor body language sends the message of uncertainty and possible interaction issues with fellow humans.

The Key Three
Eye Contact, the handshake and posture are the key three that determine a person’s character.

Eye-contact: Nothing screams insecurity or, disrespect, worse avoiding eye contact with the person to whom you are speaking. Your eyes are the windows of your soul, despite what your words may say. It is important to maintain eye-contact from start to finish

The Handshake: The handshake should be a firm grasp and match that of the person whom you are greeting. Too strong a handshake (just short of hurting) sends the message of empowerment and/or overly confident. Too weak sends the message of lay-back, somewhat insecure and indecisive or, as they say in the industry, “that of a dead mackerel.”

Best test for the right strength handshake: Try shaking hands with a family member or, friend. Remember to step slightly forward with the right foot while, simultaneously, extending your hand. This indicates your enthusiasm to greet the other person. Initially the family member or, friend will laugh at this concept; however, once they understand, their curiosity and interest will ensue.

Posture:  Poor posture (round-shouldered or, slumped forward) sends the message of withdrawing and ill-confident. Poor posture is also detrimental to one’s health.

Standing straight, shoulders back, tummy in, helps you look, feel and act confident. This also applies to sitting and walking, plus it enhances good mental and physical health.

What to do with your arms.
Do not cross your arms. This sends the message you are very self-conscious.

Try placing your hands in front of you, loosely folded or, place hands on your hips, palms flat, fingers pointed forward and thumb to the back. This sends the message the person(s) have your full attention.

Fists on hips is a "no-no". It sends the message you are argumentative, opinionated, controlling and manipulative.

Your Best Friend and Tool: The (full-length) Mirror
Talk to your image in the mirror, maintaining eye-contact. Sound crazy? Not really; please know models, actors and celebrities do this all the time before auditioning or, appearing on stage.

Now check your posture. Are you round-shouldered? Do you slump? This is also the reason your clothes may not fit as well as they should. Good posture is reflected with everything you wear.

The Handshake: As indicated above, practice stepping slightly forward with the right foot and simultaneously extending your hand. This will look more effective in the mirror.

For all you pros who already possess the above Key Three – just keep up the good work and continued success in all you do.