Everybody knows someone who can walk into a room full of people and, within minutes, give an accurate description about the relationships and feelings those people are experiencing. This ability to read a person's attitudes and thoughts by their behaviour was the original communication system used by humans before spoken language evolved.
The Definitive Book of Body Language is by no means the last word on body language, nor does it contain any of the magic formulae promised by some books. Its purpose is to make you more aware of your own non-verbal cues and signals and to demonstrate how people communicate with each other using them.
This book isolates and examines each component of body language and gesture, though few gestures are made in isolation from others; and at the same time it tries to avoid oversimplifying. Non-verbal communication is a complex process involving people, words, tone of voice and body movements.
The book gives you greater insight into communication with your fellow humans, so that you can have a deeper understanding of other people and, therefore, of yourself.
The original book was intended as a working manual for sales people, managers, negotiators and executives and has sold five million copies worldwide. The Definitive Book of Body Language is the result of over 30 years of involvement in this field and has been expanded in such a way that any person, regardless of his or her vocation or position in life, can use it to obtain a better understanding of life's most complex event - a face-to-face encounter with another person.
Barbara Peaseis CEO of Pease International, which produces videos, training courses and seminars for businesses and governments worldwide. She is co-author of the bestselling book Why Men Don't Listen and Women Can't Read Maps, which has sold 11m copies worldwide. Their books were the subject of their first number one movie hit, "Why Men Don't Listen and Women Can't Park Cars".
Allan Pease's acclaimed Body Language has sold over five million copies. He has written five other No one bestselling books and has appeared on radio and television around the world.
Definitive Book Of Body Language
Harper Collins Australia
Author: Allan Pease and Barbara Pease
How can we use this book to our advantage?
Allan Pease: It will help any person who has to go face to face with any other person and make a good impression, it also allows you to be able to read how well you are going. It is beneficial for anybody who has to deal with other humans.
What are some of the most basic body language signals and what do they mean?
Allan Pease: 60-80% of all the impact that you make when you are face to face is the way you look, appear and behave, what is called body language and how you come across. Whereas 7-10% of the impact of the message, face to face, is what you said, the rest is tone of voice. It makes most of the face to face communication.
The basic body language gestures that is hard-wired into the brain, that you are born understanding and recognising these to be able to do them; include folding your arms on your chest, crossing your arms. The way we figure a lot of this out is we look at other primates, monkeys and apes. They do everything the same, including crossing their arms when they are being threatened, feeling intimidated or under attack. Crossing your arms on your chest protects your heart and lungs. What it means is that if you are with people and you don't know anybody or you feel a bit intimidated you are likely to stand with your eyes crossed. You don't cross your arms when you're with your best mates, it doesn't feel right. The problem is that when you cross your arms people give you up to 40% less eye contact they stand further away from you and they are less likely to touch you and include you in the conversation. There brain is able to decode that you are withdrawn and not accepting of what is happening. If you have a habit of crossing your arms you are going to get less jobs, sales, less 'yes's' and less dates.
I walked into Harvey Norman this morning and I looked around for someone to help me and I couldn't see anybody, anywhere! When I looked a second time, I saw two guys, sitting behind the counter with their arms crossed. The first time round my brain had selected them out because they had their arms crossed. My brain said they are non-participants so I didn't see them; I had to look a second time to see them. What we are looking for are people who are open and accepting.
What about if a person continually touches their face?
Allan Pease: The difficulty there is that every person has one or two repetitive habits that they do for a number of reasons that aren't necessarily linked to their emotions. I sat next to a guy a couple of weeks ago at function and he kept on rubbing under his nose all the time, over and over. I was going to get up and talk about that because people that don't tell the truth have increased hand to nose contact. The guy next to me looked a little edgy and nervous so I said "look, I need to talk to you about this" because I was going to talk about it in my speech. This guy had, had a big mustache for 20 years, he tried to play with it but it was gone!
The key is to not touch your face in any situation when you want to be believable or credible.
Secondly, if you're presenting your case and someone is touching and rubbing their nose you need to watch out for what could be going through their mind.
How does one show love through body language?
Allan Pease: There is seven types of love in human beings, if you're talking about the love between a man and a woman then we have attraction and courtship signals to show one is interested in another. If you see some guy you really fancy or he fancies you then his body will go through certain pre-programmed gestures that you can look at, it becomes quite entertaining. If a girl sees a guy she really likes then she sucks her stomach in, her shoulders go out and she stands straighter so she looks taller, healthier, more youthful and more reproductive. Therefore a guy is more likely to notice you because you have those things. What men do, stomach goes in, chest goes out and shoulders go back because they want to look like they are capable of chasing large animals and killing them. The back of the woman's brain is hard-wired to find a guy who is capable of doing that, even though essentially he doesn't do that, in the 21st century, it's like 'he brings home the bacon'.
Virtually all the woman in the world want a guy with a nice chest, nice arms and a 'V' shaped body, they don't want their body to be too big, but with nice definition. In reality what is the point in those to the modern guy? Nothing! If a guy is working on a computer all day he doesn't need a large body. It is appealing and the hard-wired woman's brain because it means the guy is capable of protecting, fighting and chasing animals.
When it comes to courtship woman have a whole range of signals that they use to attract men. Around 95% of all courtship first contacts in social locations are initiated by woman, men don't make the first move; men think they make the first move. If you have a guy that says he makes the first move because 'he was over there and I checked her out and walked across and talked to her' the only reason he walked across and talked to her is because she sent him some green light symbols to allow him to make that move. These symbols are eye contact, smiling, hair pruning, looking down towards the ground, all subtle things. The guy sincerely thinks he made the first move because he crossed the floor. A guy is less likely to get a knock back if those symbols are present. No guy wants a knock back, in public, especially in front of his mates.
A small percentage of guys play the numbers game and just put the hard word on everybody.
Interview by Brooke Hunter