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Body Language of Hands: Crash Course
To know a person’s personality, intent and level of honesty, learn to study the body language of hands.
Hands are man’s greatest tool. There are more connections between the brain and the hands than any other part of the body. And for those able to read the body language of hands (which, at the end of this article, will include yourself), the hands can reveal valuable clues about personality, intention and mood. Learning to be able to correctly interpret signals in the body language of hands will give you the upper hand (pun absolutely intended) in relationships and negotiations (indeed, handshakes are a focus of negotiations training courses). So, let’s learn to master the of hands.
How to tell if someone is lying, through theof hands
The number one thing to know about theof hands is that showing the palms indicates honesty and openness, where hiding palms means a person is concealing something and possibly lying.
Now, I know what you’re thinking, and the answer is yes; it is possible to intentionally look more honest by revealing your palms, but there are two important things to know about this. Firstly, showing your palms to somebody will naturally make you want to be honest because your own brain will be interpreting your. If you reveal your palms, you yourself will feel more honest and open, and your changed mood will alter how you behave.
Secondly, it’s very difficult to fakefor a long time. We have a great deal of awareness of our hands (compared to our legs and feet, for instance) and so have a high degree of control over the of hands, but even this is hard to maintain, because fake always feels unnatural. You’ve become accustomed (without knowing it) to using natural . Changing such a deeply engrained language will not be easy and, should you try to do so without much practice, you’ll appear unnatural, insincere and dishonest. People will be aware that you’re not being yourself, and that is bound to adversely affect the relationship.
How theof hands conveys authority
When giving commands or directions, there are three main hand gestures which reveal different levels of authority.
The open-palm gesture (palm pointing upwards): This
The palm down gesture shows authority: Giving commands or directions with the palm down will make the receiver feels as though you’re bossing them around. If you’re in a position of authority, the palm-down gesture is acceptable, but at other times it will be considered offensive.
The hand-closed, finger pointed gesture: This body language of hands gesture is negative and aggressive. It’s the sort of gesture you might have seen your parents using when you were young and had behaved naughtily. This one simple gesture could easily cause people to dislike you very quickly.
Body Language of Hands: Handshakes
Handshakes are usually seen as being friendly, but this isn’t always the case. Try calling on a strangers house and offering a handshake before they even know who you are. They’ll immediately be weary of you, wondering why you are trying to force them to welcome you. No, a handshake is not always friendly. Here’s a look at the three basic forms of handshakes.
Dominant Handshakes: The dominant handshake is performed by turning your hand so the palm faces down in the handshake.
Submissive Handshakes: The submissive handshake, naturally, is the opposite, and is performed by turning the palm up during the handshake.
Equal Handshakes: Equal handshakes have both hands on the same level. It should be one of the rules of negotiations to always use this handshake.
The Ideal Handshake
The ideal handshake, the handshake which will build rapport and start a relationship off on the right foot (hand?), is to have both people’s hands vertical (so neither is turned to submission or dominance) and to shake with equal power. This will help establish equality, which is the best base to build a positive relationship on.
What to do when you’re forced into a negative handshake
In some cases, you’ll have to correct for the other person’s behaviour in order to be able to communicate equality through your handshake. Some people will try to dominate you, others will be submissive, but the right handshake is one of equality.
Try to be aware when someone is deliberately trying to force you into an unequal handshake and subtly, politely correct the shake to create one of equality. This will let the dominant person know that you’re not going to be pushed around or forced to be the submissive person and will appear friendly and respectable to someone offering you a submissive handshake.
Ignore all the fuddy-duddy advice about corrective manoeuvres
There are actually some advanced techniques that body language teachers use to correct another person’s hand gesture. Unfortunately, most of these are incredibly unnatural (for instance, grabbing at the wrist instead of the hand—which would never appear natural or comfortable for either person and is certainly not the best way to kick off sales, negotiating or any other form of meeting for that matter. The best bet is to simply be aware of whether the other person is trying to be dominant or submissive and, if you consider it necessary, subtly correct the gesture. To be honest, however, most of the time so long as you know that the other person is trying to assume dominance, you can usually make clear that you are not submissive later on (through the way you speak to them and other communication factors, all of which are far more natural than grabbing someone’s hand and twisting it into the correct gesture).
Important note: All body language gestures should be taken in context. Body language is not a “one size fits all” deal nor can body language be read like an A-Z. For more on this read: Body Language: Explained
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