They say a picture is worth a thousand words; now picture yourself, approaching a woman or a prospective client, walking into a board meeting or a party. How do you look? What message do you communicate the moment you walk into a room? What are your eyes, hands and shoulders saying? What information can people gather about you before you ever say a word? Never thought about it? With a little practice, we can learn the tips to show confidence through body language so that we always appear confident, capable and ready
Avoid your pockets
The first tip on our list of the top 10 tips to show confidence with body language is to keep your hands out of your pockets. We put our hands in our pockets when we’re uncomfortable or unsure of ourselves. Keeping your hands out in the open indicates confidence and shows people you have nothing to hide. As an alternative, try putting your hands on your hips; it’s a far more confident posture.
Fidgeting is a clear sign of nervousness. Anyone who can’t keep still is a man who is worried, tense and certainly not confident. Your hands can be your worst enemies — fight to keep them still and steady. You can talk with your hands, but keep your gesticulations calm and under control. Also, when seated, avoid that rapid leg-vibration.
Keep your eyes forward
When you’re walking anywhere by yourself, it often feels natural to lower your head slightly and watch your step, but this posture communicates to others that you don’t want to engage in conversation or interact. Keep your chin up and your eyes forward, even when you’re walking down the street by yourself.
Stand up straight with your shoulders back
It can be a challenge especially if you’ve been a sloucher all your life, but get over it. Standing up straight is perhaps the most important means of communicating confidence. Concentrate on pushing your shoulders back slightly when standing and walking. That one simple motion does wonders for your posture.
Take wide steps
A confident man will never be described as “scurrying,” “creeping” or “sneaking,” so pay attention to the way you walk. If you want to show confidence with body language you want to take large steps. Wide steps make you seem purposeful and suggest a personal tranquility, which denotes confidence in a man.
Grip the other person’s hand firmly and confidently. If shaking hands with someone you’ve already met, you might even consider the two-hand grab: placing your free hand on the other person’s elbow adds warmth and enthusiasm to the handshake. Just don’t get carried away. A handshake is not a contest. Don’t try to crush the other person’s hand and don’t hold on too long.
Imagine yourself walking into a room, maybe where there are lots of beautiful women or maybe the room is filled with respected colleagues. Grooming is an essential component of communicating confidence through body language. You want your hair, face and even your smell to work for you, not against you. Don’t be afraid to experiment with new products to find the ones that work for you.
Confident people smile because they have nothing to worry about. Try this as an experiment: smile at someone as you pass them on the street or walking around the office. Chances are good that they’ll smile back. Now wouldn’t you like to have that effect on people all the time?
Don’t cross your arms when socializing
Crossing your arms is a protective posture. We do it when we’re cold, nervous or on guard. Think of those big, burly nightclub bouncers, crossing their 26-inch pythons while standing guard at the door to a club. Do they look like guys you want to talk to, joke with or work with? No, right? Their job is to look intimidating. Your job is to look likeable, open and confident. So relax a little and keep your arms uncrossed.
Use contact to show appreciation
Don’t be afraid to pat a buddy or a colleague on the back when he or she delivers a perfectly timed punch line or nails the big presentation.
People read your body language, often via instinct and without thinking. It’s because our poses and postures are a great source of information. They reflect our mood and our confidence level. We stand and walk a certain way when we’re confident and another way when we’re nervous. In a glance, most people can discern if we’re apprehensive or outgoing, relaxed or aggressive.
This article was originally written by Andrew Moore and published at www.askmen.com