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The Importance Of Understanding Body Language Part 1 of 2


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Have you ever met a perfect stranger and just hit it off? Finding plenty to talk about, you almost felt as if you had met before. It just felt right. So comfortable were you in talking about practically anything that you lost track of time. You developed such a strong bond with that person that you knew what he was going to say. Everything just clicked between the two of you and you felt very close to this person. It might have been a physical attraction, or it might have just entailed being on the same wavelength. You felt your ideas were in sync and you enjoyed your time with each other. This is rapport. When there is rapport, we can differ in our opinions with someone else but still feel a connection or bond with that person. Rapport can even exist between two people who share very few similarities.

Whether we realize it or not, we are constantly reading and being read by others. Even without the utterance of words, the language of the body speaks volumes. Often, interpreting body language is a subconscious thing. We may not make a conscientious effort to think through all the details of why someone has just folded their arms across their chest and narrowed their eyes at us, yet somehow this body language registers subliminally and makes us feel uneasy. The subconscious instantaneously interprets these actions to indicate resistance, suspicion, or spite, even if we have not made a conscious study of the opposing person or their background.

Everything about you, be it outward or subtle, communicates something to somebody else. The words you use, your facial expressions, what you do with your hands, your tone of voice, and your level of eye contact will determine whether people accept or reject you and your message. To be persuasive, you have to present not only openness, but also authority.

Everyone persuades for a living. There’s no way around it. Whether you’re a sales professional, an entrepreneur, or even a stay at home parent, if you are unable to convince others to your way of thinking, you will be constantly left behind. Get your free reports at Success Advantage to make sure that you are not left watching others pass you on the road to success. Donald Trump said it best, “Study the art of persuasion. Practice it. Develop an understanding of its profound value across all aspects of life.”

Albert Mehrabian says we are perceived in three ways:

1. 55 percent — Visually (body language)
2. 38 percent — Vocally (tone of voice)
3. 7 percent — Verbally (spoken words)

Using body language to its fullest not only involves mastering your own use of outward gestures to create and maintain rapport, but also entails acquiring the ability to read the body language of another person. When you can effectively read body language, you can identify the emotions and discomfort of others. You can see tension and disagreement. You can feel rejection and suspicion. You have to understand that your body language adds to or detracts from your message. In other words, your subconscious gestures and expressions can either help or hurt your ability to persuade others. You can create rapport by understanding and adopting the right body postures and countenances for your prospect.

Touch is another powerful part of body language–important enough to devote a whole section to it alone. Touch can be a very effective psychological technique. Subconsciously, we like to be touched; it makes us feel appreciated and liked. It is true, though, that we do need to be aware and careful of a small percentage of the population who dislikes being touched in any way. In most instances, however, touch can help put people at ease and make them more receptive to you and your ideas.

Touch can create a positive perception in the person being touched. Touch carries with it favorable interpretations of immediacy, affection, similarity, relaxation, and informality. In one research study, librarians did one of two things when handing back library cards to university students checking out books: either they did not touch the person at all during the exchange or they made light, physical contact by placing a hand over the student’s palm. Invariably, those students who were touched during the transaction rated the library service more favorably than those who were not touched at all. Waiters/waitresses who touched customers on the arm when asking if everything was okay received larger tips and were evaluated more favorably than those waiters who didn’t touch their customers.

We know that certain areas of the body can be freely touched while other areas are off limits. Women don’t mind being touched by other women and they are fairly tolerant of being touched (appropriately) by men. Men usually don’t mind being touched by an unfamiliar female–but things get harder to predict in cases where men are touching other men. In general, men don’t like being touched by unfamiliar men. Safe areas of contact include the shoulders, forearms and hands, and sometimes the upper back. This all depends on the situation and relationship between the two parties prior to the touch.

Touch also induces customers to spend more time shopping in a particular store. In one study, physical contact on the part of salespeople induced customers to buy more and to evaluate the store more favorably.
In another example, touch was found to increase the number of people who volunteered to score papers, sign petitions, and return money that had been left in a telephone booth. Hornick discovered that touching bookstore customers on the arm caused them to shop longer (to be exact, 22.11 minutes versus 13.56 minutes), to purchase more ($15.03 versus $12.23), and to evaluate the store more positively than customers who had not been touched. Hornick also found that supermarket customers who had been touched were more likely to taste and purchase food samples than nontouched customers.

Conclusion

Persuasion is the missing puzzle piece that will crack the code to dramatically increase your income, improve your relationships, and help you get what you want, when you want, and win friends for life. Ask yourself how much money and income you have lost because of your inability to persuade and influence. Think about it. Sure you’ve seen some success, but think of the times you couldn’t get it done. Has there ever been a time when you did not get your point across? Were you unable to convince someone to do something? Have you reached your full potential? Are you able to motivate yourself and others to achieve more and accomplish their goals? What about your relationships? Imagine being able to overcome objections before they happen, know what your prospect is thinking and feeling, feel more confident in your ability to persuade.

Kurt Mortensen - EzineArticles Expert Author

About the Author:

Kurt Mortensen’s trademark is Magnetic Persuasion; rather than convincing others, he teaches that you should attract them, just like a magnet attracts metal filings. He teaches that sales have changed and the consumer has become exponentially more skeptical and cynical within the last five years. Most persuaders are using only 2 or 3 persuasion techniques when there are actually 120 available!

Kurt teaches over a hundred techniques to give you the ability to effectively work with every customer that walks in your door. Professional success, personal happiness, leadership potential, and income depend on the ability to persuade, influence, and motivate others. Learning how to persuade and influence will make the difference between hoping for a better income and having a better income.

If you are ready to claim your success and learn what only the ultra-prosperous know, begin by going to http://www.PreWealth.com and getting my free report “10 Mistakes That Continue Costing You Thousands.” After reading my free report, go to http://www.PreWealth.com/IQ and take the free Persuasion IQ analysis to determine where you rank and what area of the sales cycle you need to improve in order to close every sale!

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  • Posted On December 25, 2006
  • Published articles 283513

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