Friday, 11 November 2011

Move, like you mean it.

Have you ever been in a situation where you just could not bring yourself to believe what someone was saying even though what was said was completely believable? Did you just have a feeling that something just doesn’t tally or that something was off? Was it the fidgety hands or the wandering eyes?

The difference between spoken words and the comprehension of it largely comes from nonverbal communication.

These days, people face machines more than they face another human. The modes of communication have increased intensely since a generation ago. This has resulted in a growing reliance of using a medium to transmit messages. In the face of another human, many have forgotten the basics of nonverbal language. How you say what you say. How you sit or stand while saying. It is what gives our words meaning when we speak. They say a picture paints a thousand words. An expression on the face or a slightest movement of where your body is facing tells a story that is not transmittable via a medium.

Different types of body languages are portrayed in everyday situations and they usually occur without the conscious awareness. The various means of nonverbal communication that are used according to the context, sends strong signals that could emphasize or contradict what is being said. By simply observing a person’s nonverbal language alone, you would be able to tell if he was talking to a superior or a colleague. You might also be able to decipher if he has positive or negative feelings towards his communicator.

As most of us are unaware of how our body reacts to certain context. It is often assumed that as long as the right words are carefully chosen and correctly executed, the coast is clear. But it is the nonverbal communication that transmits the clearest message. Non-verbal language will affect how you act and react to others, and how they react to you.

There are two parts to nonverbal language, the body and the voice. Body: Body movements and gestures, that ranges from the legs, hands and head, muscle tension, posture, eye movement, eye contact, skin colouring (pale or flushed), breathing rate and perspiration. Voice: Rate, tone, pitch, volume and timbre of speech all adds to words that used.

By developing keen awareness of the signs and signals of body language, it is easier to project the right message, decipher innuendoes, understand other people, more effectively communicate and react.

Chief Editor: Jeremy Chan

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