Body Language is Your Secret Superpower
If you could have any superpower, what would it be? You may be imagining yourself flying through the room. Or maybe you’re teleporting to space. You may in fact be invisible.
We all dream of having a superpower as kids, but what if I told you that you already have one?
Body language is your secret superpower. The ability to read and understand nonverbal behavior in both yourself and others will radically change the way you interact.
I’m Vanessa, and I run a human behavior research lab called the Science of People. I’m also the author of the best-selling book, Captivate: The Science of Succeeding with People. Our goal is to teach you how people work through easy-to-implement tips, quizzes, and experiments—and a whole lotta fun.
Research has found that 60-93% of our communication is nonverbal—the how we say something behind the what we say. And further, nonverbal communication is 12-13 times more powerful than accompanying words.
Crazy, right? Think about the last time you gave someone good news. Maybe you got a promotion at work or aced a test or discovered the best burrito place down the street.
Your friend, colleague, or partner reacts with, “That’s great.” And even though “that’s great” is an acceptable verbal response, their body is telling a different story. Maybe they roll their eyes or turn away or cross their arms. This type of incongruence between verbal and nonverbal communication is why body language is so important. It reveals the hidden emotions and feelings of those around us.
You can also use body language and nonverbal communication to change the way others perceive you.
Psychology professor Stephen Ceci did just that. He wanted to know if his body language could affect his student evaluations at the end of the semester, so he taught one class with his regular (dare I say boring) body language and another class with power body language, which you’ll be learning a lot more about in Day #4. He scripted his class so the verbal content was exactly the same.
In his power body language class, the students rated him higher in every single evaluation area, including instructor knowledge, accessibility, and organization. They even rated his class higher in textbook quality. Ceci’s body language made even his textbook more impressive!
This is one of many examples of the power of body language, and I will teach you much more in the days ahead.
Here’s a little sneak peek of what’s to come:
Day #2: What Signals Are You Sending?
Day #3: The Power of Presence
Day #4: Power Body Language
Day #5: Body Language + Attraction
Day #6: Beware this Microexpression
Day #7: The Nod
Day #8: Negative Nonverbal
Day #9: Lean with Me
Day #10: Your Body Language Action Plan
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