- DEMONSTRATES – power, dominance, authority, in charge and superiority – on the offensive….it’s your fault not mine…
- VOICE – shrill, tight, loud voice
- AUDIENCE – feel told off/blamed
- USAGE – very sparingly – positively to empower an individual, punch a point home, to get through to someone who just isn’t getting the message or for short guilt trips. Soften by pointing above the audience or using two fingers.
- DEMONSTRATES – helplessness, pleading, dependence, vulnerability, begging.
- AUDIENCE – feel you’re a “Yes man”, can’t think for yourself, just want their approval, trying to please, run from conflict…
- WARNING – women should avoid this gesture – ingratiating, weakens your position.
- USAGE – men only, use when say something confrontational to soften the blow or for sympathy.
- DEMONSTRATES – frankness, truth, strength, honesty, openness, sincerity, calming.
- VOICE – slow, calm, includes pauses.
- AUDIENCE – feels you level with them – candid and forthright – tell them the truth.
- USAGE – good for giving impartial or factual information, use for believability, to convince an audience, bring them down to earth.
- DEMONSTRATES – intellect, thinker, professor, logical, sensible, considering, rational, analytical, unemotional and super reasonable.
- VOICE – slow/monotone voice and long words.
- USAGE – great to show someone you’re considering what they say, good diffusion tactic when challenged by the audience, use to separate your message from emotions or to buy time.
- DEMONSTRATES – fun, laughs, jokes, clown – literally distracting.
- WARNING – avoid for serious messages, always asymmetric in gesture/posture – switches continually between categories, never makes sense! Can seem panicky…
- USAGE – use only for fun and to create energy/surprise. Don’t overuse!
So next time you’re presenting, or even just talking to someone face to face, try these out. Computer is a perfect starting point and can be of value in a host of different situations. Are there any other gestures or postures that you use that you think are great for getting a certain message across?
[Picture credits - NLP THIRTEEN]
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