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How to Connect through Open Body Language

1. Be sensitive to body space. Don’t stand too far away from the person, or fold your arms across your chest. That sends the message “I don’t want to get close”. At the same time, don’t invade the person’s space – as standing too close is highly threatening.

2. Maintain steady but soft eye contact. If you avert your gaze that says you’re insecure; but staring for too long is intimidating. Eye contact should be confident and comfortable.

3. Invite the other person into your thought processes. Share your ideas, and think aloud. Also, welcome their comments – and don’t just brush them off.

4. Watch out for quick and stilted body movements as those create discomfort in relationships. Instead, run your hand through your hair, or use your hands when you talk as that creates a more dynamic interaction.

5.  Related to this, minimise distracting movements like biting your nails as those usually turn the other person off.

6. Speak slowly and clearly in a varied and interesting voice.

7. Express emotions through your face as that makes you seem much more genuine.

8. Match your pace to the other person’s pace. If they are slow and hesitant then slow your pace down; if they are quick and lively then try and match that pace.  

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    I suck at every single one of these except number 7.
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