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language is fascinating. People rarely recognize how much information
they give off and how noticeable it is to the human eye. Even to
the untrained human eye. It is said that no less that 50 percent
of information on a person s character, impact and credibility
is conveyed through no verbal communication.
following list takes some common body postures and states the persons
Arms crossed: Defensive and cautious.
Resting chin on palm: Critical, cynical and negative towards
the other person.
Dropping eyeglasses onto the lower bridge of the nose and peering
over them: Causes negative reactions in others.
Slowly and deliberately taking off glasses and carefully cleaning
the lens: The person wants to pause and think before raising
opposition or asking for clarification.
Pinching bridge of the nose: Communicates great thought and
Nose-rubbing or nose-touching: A sign of doubt, it often reveals
a negative reaction.
Rubbing around ears: Performed while weighing an answer, commonly
coupled with 'well, I don't know'.
Resting feet on a desk or chair: Gestures of territorial hegemony.
Swaying back: Weak ego.
Retracted shoulders: Suppressed anger.
Direct Eye Contact: Interested, likes you
Smiling Eyes: Is comfortable
Relaxed Brow: Comfortable
Limited or No Eye Contact : Lying, uninterested, too confined,
Tension in Brow : Confusion, tension, fear
Shoulders hunched forward : Lacking interest or feeling inferior
Rigid Body Posture : Anxious, uptight
Crossed arms : Can be just cold, protecting the body, or defensive
Tapping Fingers : Agitated, anxious, bored
Fidgeting with hands or objects (i.e., pen) : Bored or has something
Leaning forward : Interested
Fingers Interlocked placed behind the head leaving elbows open and
armpits exposed : Very open to ideas, comfortable
Mirroring you : Likes you and wants to be friendly
Still : More interested in what you are saying than anything
Eyes open slightly more than usual: Gives people the impression
that they are welcome.
Breath faster: Nervous or angry
Inhaling loudly and shortly: Wants to interrupt a speaking
Loud sigh: Understand the thing that is being told.
Twisting the feet continuously : A person is nervous
or concerned, but can also mean that a person is stressed or angry
and that he don't want to show that to everybody.
Legs wide apart or Sitting straddle-legged: Shows that a
person is feeling safe, and is self - confident. Can also show leadership.
A big smile that goes on longer and disappears slower.: Unreal
or fake smile
Crossed legs with highest foot in the direction of the speaker.:
Relaxed and self-confident and they are listening very carefully.
Rapidly nodding your head : Shows impatient and eager
to add something to the conversation
Slowly nodding: Shows interest and that they are validating
the comments of the interviewer, and this subtly encourages him
Dangling the loose shoe from the toes : Signals physical
Rubbing your collar: Nerves
Adjusting your tie: Insecurity
Pressed Lips: Pressed lips convey disagreement and disapproval.
It communicates a desire to end the discussion. A raised chin implies
aggression that may be acted on if the conversation is not ended.
Pursed Lips: This is also a sign of disapproval. It indicates
that the person has fixed views that cannot be changed. This usually
reveals an arrogant and superficial character.
Biting the Lips: The person expresses embarrassment when
he bites his lips. He also communicates a lack of self-confidence.
Reading Hand Signals: People have been granted with two hands:
the left and the right hand. The left has been dubbed as the "emotional
hand since an imaginary line can be drawn from the third finger
leading directly to the heart. This is why the wedding ring is placed
on this finger. The right hand, literally on the other hand. has
been named the "proper hand since it is with this hand that people
communicate a blocking or stopping signal.
Open Hands: Open hands may be demonstrated by showing the
palm of one s hand, especially in a conversation or an argument..
This expresses a trust in other and an interest in their opinions.
It also offers an opinion and invites the sharing of the other person
Covered Hands: This is expressed by raising the back of one
or both hands against others. This indicates the setting up of barriers
or the keeping of distance. It is an act of concealing feelings
and covering insecurity
Clinging Hands: Those who cling to objects, such as handbags.
files or tables. show a need for support. This action conveys confusion
or insecurity. It expresses fear and difficulty in coping with the
Twisted Hands ( crossing both hands then clasping the palms together)
: Expression of a complex personality. It may indicate a difficult
emotional life. The way the palms are held together conveys a need
to hide something.
Clasping the hands : indicates defence.
Shrugged shoulders: You can recognize stressed shoulders
by the fact that they are a bit shrugged, which does make the head
look smaller. The meaning of the signal comes from crouching in
dangerous situations. The meaning of this posing depends on the
combination. In combination with big eyes it means that someone
is concerned about something that is going to happen. In combination
with a face that is turned away it means that the person wants to
be left alone. An introvert person has nearly always those stressed
Difference in level of both shoulders: By most of the people
the left and the right shoulder are of the same height. When they
are not, it often means that someone is doubting about what he is
going to do. With this movement we simulate (unconscious) that we
are weighing the possibilities. Sometimes when someone makes this
movement, his head will move a little like he is looking above.
Crossed arms: There are a lot of different explanations of
the meaning of crossed arms. When someone has crossed arms and he
is shaking his head it means that he does not agree with you. But
he can also cross his arms when he is frightened, then his arms
give him some protection. Another option is that he is feeling cold
and he is trying to hold his body-warmth with him. When someone
is sitting in a chair with his arms crossed, it indicates that the
person is relaxed.
Making a fist from your hands: A fist is a sign for aggression.
It comes from hitting someone. But it is seldom used with a threatening
meaning. Most of the time it is used to indicate that you are angry
Holding the hand before the mouth: Holding a hand before
your mouth means that you are hiding something. In western countries
it is impolite to belch or to hiccup. So someone can hold his hand
before his mouth to hide that he is hiccupping. When someone puts
his hand before his mouth when he is talking it indicates that he
is saying something or has said something that he did not want to
Making the eyes look larger: The meaning of making the eyes
look larger can be that someone is astonished. In that case he opens
his mouth a little. It can also mean that he is happy or that he
likes the thing that is talked about. And because it means that
you like something, you can use it on purpose. It pleases people
when you have your eyes opened a bit further. When people open their
eyes a bit further it can also mean that they are unhappily surprised.
Then they will frown their eyebrows.
Raising the eyebrows: Raising the eyebrows shortly means
that people are surprised. They raise their eyebrows to allow them
to look better. But it can also mean that somebody is looking at
you, and that he likes you.
Raised forehead: A raised forehead often means that someone
is remembering something he has seen. This often happens very quickly.
It can also be a sign of a certain emotion. It is a biological reflex
that you raise your forehead a little when you are crying so the
tears can move easier.
Pursed lips: When somebody purses his lips it means that
he has to make a decision and is thinking about that. Sometimes
he also moves his lips, like he is saying the possibilities. When
somebody purses his lips, he often looks a bit upward.
Firm Handshake: The strong, firm handshake usually is given
by a person who is sure and confident of themselves.
Weak hand shake: People who give these types of handshakes
are either nervous, shy, insecure, or afraid of interaction with
Cleared your throat: Nervousness.
Bitten your fingernails: Nervousness.
Wring your hands: Nervousness.
Paced the floor: Nervousness.
A person is bouncing their legs and their arms are crossed over
or their torso is slumped: Closed off
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