Many of us have spent months indoors, isolating to keep ourselves and our community safe. As the world starts to open up and people find themselves socializing in-person again, some of us are feeling a bit more socially anxious then we did a year and a half ago.
Tip 1: Dial Up the Eye Contact.
Despite the fact that we’ve spent more than a year covering half of our face, we’ve actually given less eye contact instead of more to compensate for our masked faces.
Often people feel slightly uncomfortable about covering themselves up, Mark said, or they’ve gone inwards to protect themselves more during this pandemic. Now, as some of us are starting to take the masks off and/or are going back into the office and other social situations, we need to break that habit of looking away, and concentrate on making a bit more eye contact with people while speaking with them.
Tip 2: Show More of Yourself
Often when we interact outside of screens, we are more expressive with our gestures. So, Mark suggests that we embrace that and show more of ourselves through bigger and open body language. This gives people the opportunity to make a better judgement of you.
For example, Mark says, place your coffee cup a little further in front of you so that when you grab it, you make a bigger movement and take up more of the space around you. People who take up more space are viewed as more confident. Don’t exaggerate, Mark warns, but be open to showing more of yourself through your body language.
Tip 3: Be Aware of Your Hand Placement
To avoid awkwardness is as simple as placing your hands in the right place when speaking with others. Do not just let your hands hang down by your side. This is inherently seen as awkward, and often makes you look sleepy and subdued. Instead, Mark says, bring your hands up to your stomach and clasp them together. This is a much more inviting and confident pose.
Tip 4: Be Clear About the Ground Rules
Hugging in a COVID-world requires us to determine each other’s comfort level. Often we have the flexibility of determining this before seeing each other through email, etc., so make sure to check-in with the person before meeting them. If you aren’t able to do this, Mark suggests that you become bigger and more certain with your gestures so that people know what you are trying to communicate and can let you know how they feel about it.
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Voted the #1 body language professional in the world for two years running, Mark Bowden is passionate about giving people the most influential and persuasive communication techniques to stand out, win trust, and gain credibility every time they speak.
Inspiring, energetic, and entertaining, Mark’s memorable talks and training programs not only provide top-tier education, but have proven life-changing for audiences, helping their businesses grow across all industries and sectors.
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