Lost in translation, or what we actually know about body language?

09.04.2013

Many people think that they understand the non-verbal signals interlocutor. But from the look of the careful observer can escape the fact that, in reality, these signals are extremely contradictory.




Last year, when Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes announced the divorce, reporters rushed to assure each other that this was to be expected. "You just look at the body language" — screaming headlines, under which adorned with photos of gloomy Holmes, Cruise's holding at arm's length. And when Barack Obama last year, lost the first election debate with Mitt Romney, some commentators have pointed to the President for his "limp" gestures, habits lowered his eyes and prim lips. Like, it's indicative of the apathy and lack of preparation Obama.

Popular culture has accumulated vast experience in the interpretation of such signs. First, it is useful, because we are not interested in what looks like a companion, and that he is actually on his mind. Second, the more I see the hidden connections (rather than the more I convince myself in this), the more my self-esteem.

Is this true? Is there really a body language? And if so, can we use it to manipulate people?

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Psychologist Dan Carney of the University of California at Berkeley (USA) goes even further and suggests that the change in his body language we can help ourselves to change and internally. She and her colleagues asked volunteers to take two minutes to pose powerful man or some Akaky. In the first case, the participant experiment straightens his shoulders, lifted up his feet on the table, laid his hands behind his head and stood with legs wide apart and hands on hips. In the second — compressed, trying to occupy a smaller space. Then, the volunteers offered to gamble with absolutely equal chances of winning, but in the meantime, scientists took samples of saliva on the concentration of testosterone and cortisol (a hormone "strength" and stress, respectively). So, the first more often included in the game (86% vs. 60% of the latter), and they have a 20% increase in testosterone levels by 25% and reduces the level of cortisol, whereas in the second it was the opposite: 10% testosterone fell by 15 % grew cortisol.

Obviously, the decisions we pose not only affect our emotional, but also on the physiological state. Elevated testosterone is associated with better tolerance of pain, so we have really become stronger. Ms. Carney also points to the results of other studies: straight back leads to positive emotions, and stooped posture — a bad mood, through the power of a smile makes you happier, and the gloomy mine has the opposite effect. They say that Botox, which is difficult because of Crouching disgruntled face, and really improves the mood.

So what about the other judge with great care. Think better of yourself. In the words of a popular song, "Do not just stand there, take at least some position."

Prepared according to NewScientist.





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