What Every BODY is Saying

Title: What Every BODY is Saying
Author: Joe Navarro, Marvin Karlins
Type: #litnote #book #todevelop


Human body is a billboard that is constantly displaying what one thinks and feels. The subtle non-verbal behaviors can be used to decode ones intentions and thoughts in a particular circumstances. Humans have evolved to use certain body parts in a particular way in order to avoid the danger. And these behaviors are hardcoded in our system that its very hard to fake them unlike our words. Learning to decode these non-verbal behaviors can help you understand a persons feelings, intentions, and action he migh take.

Non-verbals are powerful. Learning to decode non-verbals is hard. But with deliberate practice you can automate this process. And this skill can give you an enormous advantage over other people when navigating this complex world.


10 Commandments for Decoding Non-Verbals


The Limbic Brain

We like to think that we have full control of our brain but we don't. We know very little about how our brain operates. Our brains have evolved to operate in a certain way. Its sole aim was our survival. Our limbic brain never sleeps. It never take breaks. And it has the largest role in non-verbal communication.

The limbic brain has especially evolved for three responses: Freeze, flight, Fight

Pacifying behaviors & Others

Pacifying behaviors are the behaviors displayed by people when they are stressed. These behavior aim to calm them down. They occur as a result of the limbic brain sending a message to the body,"I'm stressed. Please pacify me!".

Pacifying behaviors can be in any form. For example, smokers may start smoking more. An individual who is chewing gum will chew faster. When you are stressed, the brain tells you to do something, anything. Pacifying behaviors soothe us in the presence of negative stimulus.

Some of the examples of pacifying behaviours are:

When someone is pacifying, you should ask yourself,"Why is this person pacifying? What caused this person to be stressed". The higher the stress, the greater the amount of facial or neck stroking.

Non-verbals of the feet & leg

Legs are the most hones part of our body. And the honesty decreases as we move up towards our heads. We evolved to react with legs fast. Whenever we sense danger, we freeze, distance ourselves from the perceived danger and use kick in the last stage.

Our legs react without conscious thought because the reaction is hard-wired. Leg behaviors is also influenced by the vigiliant action of others. Here are important non-verbals of the legs:


Torso Tips

Torso involves hips, abdomen, chest and shoulders. It prevents the important organs of body. Therefore, our body evolved to respond in certain ways to perceived dangers and comforts. Following are the different torso tips:


Non-verbals of Hand

Our hands serve a purpose. They are reactive and oriented to protect us. They will rise up to protect us even whend doing so is illogical. Some non-verbals of the hand are:


Fingers & Hands

Hands are one of the most important body part. They are more expressive, skilled and more dangerous than any other body part. Magicians, speakers and influencers take advantage of this body part to create great presentations. Using your hands freely helps you to be more expressive. People will treat you as more honest and genuine than the person who is not using.

Hiding hands can give negative impressions about you to others. It can make people feel uncomfortable and feel less honest about you.


Non-verbals of The Face

Our face is the canvas to our mind. It serves as a universal language. Although faces can be honest in dispalying how we feel, they don't always represent our true sentiment. Because we are trained from our early age to fake our facial expressions. Concentrate on what you see and not what they say and you can learn a lot more than what the person is saying.


Detecting deception

Deception is worth the study. Deception is difficult to detect because lying is used as a tool for social survival. When there is discomfort in conversation, its a probable sign of deception. The other person trying to distance and seperate is an uncomfortable sign of deception.

Liars will rarely make physical contact when making false statements. False smile is a discomfort display. Pacifiers and discomfort