Body Language – an element of Communication skills Introduction:

Body language is another means of communication. Sometimes it can send signals stronger than words. Body language is controlled by your subconscious mind, so a reader can actually understand if there’s a difference in what you are saying and thinking. In order to ensure that your words and body language compliment each other, you need to read and practice a bit.

What are the gestures which you should avoid while talking to some body? What gestures can make you sound more positive? How can you show your agreement/ disagreement without speaking out? Has this worked for you? It will be interesting to know your thoughts on this.

Impact of body language

Body language often has great impact in transmitting messages to the listener. Facial expressions and eye movements are very important while conveying your feelings. Smile on the face reflects confidence. If you are in meeting and you are not moving your eyes over all the participants, you will fail to add an impact. You need to maintain intensity of voice to match the heat of the topic. Good posture coordinates your verbal language. If you have right body posture, you can easily control your voice. Your body weight needs to be equally balanced on the feet to have correct posture. Try to notice your body posture when you are happy and confident. You will find that your body is equally balanced and consequently, you are taking full breath at ease and body is moving synchronously with your voice.

Body language plays an essential role in communicating with people. Body language comprises of the gestures and movements we make of the different parts of our body when communicating with people. Many a times, body language speaks more than words. Certainly, the body language must be in sync with the words.

Points to remember:

  • Never be up tied or stiff while making movements.
  • Avoid body language that may be misunderstood or look unprofessional. E.g. Winking
  • A consistent eye contact is a positive sign and must be used
  • Avoid fiddling with things around. It may distract the attention
  • Each body part movement signifies something and helps in interpreting. E.g. Standing with hands on hips signifies aggressions, nodding signifies agreement and active listening, biting nails signifies nervousness.
  • Unlike emails, body language does not give time to think. Hence they must be used appropriately.

Why body language

  • Body language can instantly help to evaluate the interest of people
  • It is a personal way of expressing emotions when words don’t help
  • It can make communication interesting and non monotonous
  • Positive body gestures

Positive body gestures are a sign of confidence and security. They are a sign of active participation and leave a good impression. Positive gestures include:-

  • Walking upright
  • Shaking hands confidently
  • Having a pleasant face.
  • Nodding head is a positive gesture
  • A steady eye contact
  • Negative body gestures

Following negative gestures are a sign of insecurity and restlessness. Such gestures show a lack of confidence. Such gestures should be avoided in interviews or meetings.

  • Being up tied
  • Biting nails
  • Getting distracted
  • Faking a smile
  • Looking at something else while talking instead of the speaker
  • Proper etiquettes should be followed.


Akshita Sharma 

Assistant Professor, Department of Commerce & Management, Kalinga University 

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