Imagine a world where you’re never misunderstood, where you never send or receive mixed messages, where you never have to backtrack and say, “Hey, that’s not what I meant!”
Some people view body language as a luxury, something they’ll learn about if and when they have the time. These same folks would probably be surprised to learn that experts estimate that a full two-thirds of communication is nonverbal. (Makes learning body language seem like a bit more of a necessity, doesn’t it?) So when you are speaking with someone, you’re not just processing what they’re saying, you’re subconsciously picking up on their movements as well. If their actions jive with their words, then you’re likely to decide—again, subconsciously—that this person is on the up-and-up. If something is off between someone’s words and movements, however, there’s a good chance that you’ll hold that person at arm’s length, possibly without realizing why.
Most people want to learn body language for a specific event in their life, like a job interview, a first date, or turning the tables on a big old liar. But what you learn about nonverbal communication can be used in all kinds of situations, from work to school to interacting with your neighbors. It’s one thing to know how to charm people with your words; fortifying those words with the right unspoken cues really sells you and your personality to the people around you.
Reading body language can help you navigate your way around almost any situation where you feel you need a key or legend to understand the other person’s intention. Think of the information in this book as your Rosetta Stone for decoding your interpersonal relationships. In these pages, you’ll read about every part of the body, and the subconscious signals hidden there. Along with this information, you’ll take a look at different scenarios where having an intimate knowledge of the meaning behind the gestures will give you a definite advantage and make your life significantly less stressful.
Be prepared: Friends and family will marvel at your newfound confidence and your ability to defuse the people who frustrate you the most. Tempting as it may be, don’t keep the secret to yourself—let them know that anyone can get an inside scoop on human behavior by simply reading up on nonverbal cues. Don’t stand there wearing a frown and pursed lips (two sure signs of confusion or disbelief); not only is this true, it’s very possible in your own life. So get going and learn this incredibly useful skill. You’ll kick yourself (a sign of anger) if you don’t.