Q & A (your questions answered)
Do you have a question that you always wanted to ask? Write me and I will answer it for you immediately!!! No need to post your name unless you want it posted (you just need to let me know either way) If your question is one I think others will enjoy - it gets published.
Q: do you have any tips for someone (me!!) on how to control talking too fast while addressing others? I also have a tendency, while I do this, to interrupt in order to get my point across.
A: Here are some tips for slowing down: BE SELF AWARE. This is the most important one. Before each interaction, recognize that you have a tendency to do this and focus on slowing down. Do a bunch of deep breaths which will help to relax you before you speak to someone. Practice speaking in slow sentences while you are alone – like anything else, practice makes perfect.
Q: Is it true that when a member of the opposite sex has the pupils of their eyes dilated this is an indication that they are attracted to you?
A: Yes. It can be an indication that someone is attracted to you. Eyes dilate in order to take more of something in. Of course, eyes automatically dilate in darker rooms as well as during moments of fear. They either like you or are intensely afraid of you .
Q: Every time I have to go on a stage or in front of a camera to make a speech or just recieve something I am always so nervous and I feel like everybody noices that, so i was wondering how should i hide that or what should I or should not do to act more confindent in front of people.
A: There are several ways to appear more confident – pull back your shoulders and push your chest forward, maintain eye contact with your audience, never speak behind a podium (your audience might get the impression you are hiding from them), keep your hands visible and your legs steady with equally balanced weight on each leg and finally SMILE…. A smile screams confidence and makes you feel better as well. In addition, you want to work on actually feeling more confident as well. Hypnosis can work wonders for confidence. I would suggest you look into purchasing a generic confidence CD from the bookstore.
Q: Every dating book says: "When you see a girl, look at her eyes. If she looks at you and meets your gaze, smile at her. If she smiles back, she's ready to be approached by you." Now I was walking and i saw one girl i looked at her and she looked at me, as I was pasing her I started smiling and she smiled too, but at the same time she turned her head to the side, looking down, almost touching her shoulder with her chin, but still kept smiling, so I'd like to know your opinion. What do you think she was showing. It really confused me. Was she saying something like "Don't look at me?"
Q: I'm curious if you are familiar with what Kenrick Cleveland describes as the unconscious hello.
Kenrick says that everyone has a "hello" gesture (usually in the face but can be elsewhere) that they fire unconsciously when they see new people (this can be across the room). Kenrick also talks about mirroring that hello gesture back right away to create what he describes as an amazing rapport and feeling of comfort for the other person.
A: An unconscious hello is typically a way of responding to or initiating a "hello" with your face and or head as well as your body. I have read some of Kenrick Cleaveland's thoughts about the "UH and I think the idea of mirroring another individual is a wonderful way to build rapport. To me, a "UH" is simply the nod of a head, a smile, eye contact, the turn of the body toward someone or even opening your arms or legs in the direction of someone who sees you. Typically these "hello's" are unintentional, though, they can make a very nice intentional way of breaking the ice.
Q: I am a scientist in and R&D for a major company. On occasion we scientists are asked to present our work to the division. Usually all the high level directors are there along with other management types including the VP: These are very sensitive questions, but I must ask:
Why will the VP will not keep his fingers out of his nose?
Is this a true display of body language, or just a very bad habit?
Is he feeling bored and showing subsequent disrespect for our research?
A: It's hard to give you an answer on this because I do not have access to any accompanying gestures, however, I will tell you that most often, nose pickers are just in the habit of picking their nose. It tends to occur most often when they are bored and to demonstrate that they are not intimated by social norms.
Q: I was impressed w/you on O'Reilly. But after reading your Q & A section, while I found you more people skilled than a couple of other body language "experts", I have to say, I have had it w/Bush bashers.
A: You must realize that we cannot always agree on everything. I am not a Bush basher in any way. There are certain things I agree with him on and certain things I do not. This goes with most political figures. Luckily, body language does not have an ideology.Q: I need to know if you can look at people ,unknown to you, without context, and tell what their body language is saying....When I see you on O'Reilley's show, ( you're great by the way) but I being an amateur body reader, can do the same thing as you, just by knowing a frame of political or social referrence on the people being scrutinized...So can you really tell???
You can surmise ALOT but it is difficult without context to be very accurate. BTW, even with context, it is difficult to know for sure. People say to me all the time, "he/she scratched his/her nose, are they lying?"... Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.... ALthough nonverbal communication/body language can be very telling, it is always open to interpretation. It is likely for body language readers to have several different opinions about the same segment.
I have probably made this more confusing than it needs to be.... Bottom line - body language is not a real language and has no definitions, therefore, readings are interpretations of clustered gestures and context is very important.
Q: What kind of body language could I use in order to appear more confident speaking in front of groups?
A: Take 10 very slow deep breaths right before going out, this will relax you so you are not shaky and your voice is not high pitched.
Do not lean your body to the side, stand with weight balanced symmetrically on both legs.
Make eye contact with participants, don't just glance at them, speak to them - eye contact with your audience is incredibly powerful.
Small gestures keeping your hands below your shoulders to avoid looking overly dramatic (of course, unless overly dramatic is the goal of your speech).
Shoulders down and relaxed - so many speakers I watch get nervous and their shoulders lift from the tension and they wind up looking like they have no necks.
don't fidget, don't keep anything in your hands. If you are using powerpoint and need a clicker, either make sure you don't play with it or, leave it down until you are ready to change screens.
Don't stand behind a podium (unless you have to). You never want anything between yourself and your audience. It creates a wall which inhibits rapport.
Q: I have this problem that ,in general people take an immediate dislike to me this is before I have even spoken, I can sense the atmosphere. Please don't say it's my imagination ,I often think maybe I give off bad vibrations and they detect it.
A: Usually when I hear people say this I look to see what kind of vibes they are sending out. What does that mean? Each person has their own look, their own tone, their own choice of mannerisms. When meeting people for the first time, the tone of your voice, the eye contact you make and the way you hold your body all make the difference between you making the cut as a "yes" or being discarded as a "no". In addition, there are studies out now which discuss the "smell of fear". If you feel intimidated when meeting new people, they might actually be able to subliminally pick up on that fear by a scent your body is releasing.
Q: What are your thoughts on those who chew gum as for as first impressions?
A: Chewing gum indicates anxiety and frustration. Does that mean everyone who chews gum is anxious and frustrated? No, however, it does mean a great many of them will be observed to be anxious and frustrated. The bottom line, use breath spray, suck on a mint or rinse your mouth before meeting others if you are concerned about your breath. If it is indeed a nervous habit, you need to break it.
Q: I am a poker player. Do you have any material that would help tell me when a person is being deceiving by their body language? The nature of poker is to deceive the other players about which cards they are holding? I am able to pick up tells to get a read on other players sometimes by being observant and using my experience, but I am always looking for new tells.
A: A poker player reader of mine just recommended Paul Ekman's "Unmasking The Face" which I believe is an excellent read for anyone interested in studying facial expressions. In the past, I have also recommended Mike Caro's books.
Q: My department at work includes people from several cultures, American, Vietnamese, Indian, Filipino, Irish and Belgian. I expect some body language elements are universal and others are cultural. Could you give some information on this?
A: This is a tough question because it is huge. Most nonverbal communication is considered instinctual and therefore universal. However, there are many body language cues which are cultural based. For instance, in certain countries nodding your head up and down is "No". The A-okay is a curse. There is an interesting book by Edward Hall on cultural differences and body language called "The Silent Language". If any of you pick it up, let me know what you think of it. Also, you can find tons of cultural information online.
Q: Have you examined Patsy Ramsey's body language? I am still suspicious of her because of how she spoke when she said, "I did not kill that child." One does not speak of a recently deceased child as "that". "That" is used when speaking of the other woman. English English can give people away as well as body English.
A: I did not have an opportunity to review the body language of Patsy Ramsey. I did try to look up some YouTube videos, however, I did not find anything to comment on.
Q: Do you have your own radio or tv show?
A: Not yet but you never know what the future holds.
Q: What would really be helpful would to be able to read body language that might confirm or conflict with oral communication.
A: The first step to doing this is to recognize that we automatically "believe" the body language over the oral communication. How many times have you heard through gritted teeth and crossed arms "no. I am not angry". The signs are always there, however, we sometimes doubt our "instincts" because the words contradict what our instincts tell you. Start listening to those instincts and paying attention to what set the alarm bell off and you will begin to notice those sometimes subtle nuances that contradict verbal communication.
Q: Will I play better poker with enhanced skills in body language?
A: Absolutely. I received a lot of email about poker and body language. I will address this in greater detail next week. I will also recommend some books for you poker players to help you read the other players. :)
Q: On a first date, do you think that the man should pay, or do you think that the woman should pay, or do you think they should split the bill, or do you think that they should skip the bill?
A: On the first date I believe that the asker should pay for the askee (did I make that word up?).. However, having said that, if it were me going out on a first date, I would at least offer to pay half the bill. Of course, truth-be-told, it might turn me off slightly if the gent accepted my offer J .
Q: I don't think the fact that Bush crosses his legs and leans back when Pelosi is speaking reflects the fact that he DISAGREES with her; I think it's more of the defense posture of someone who is INTIMIDATED. Bush has had 6 years surrounded by Yes men and being lobbed softballs. Now, he's scared and defensive, because for the first time, he's going to have to represent a position without just repeating the same old catchphrases. He's going to have to think and reason. If I'm Bush's Brain, I'm worried about that prospect.
A: I agree with you.
Q: George Bush is right-handed. When he crossed his legs during Pelosi's words, he crossed his right leg over his left. Right handed people never do this naturally.
A: Although statistically speaking, more people do cross left over right, 30-40% of the population (left and right handed) cross right over left. If you look at previous footage of Bush, he does this quite often.
Q: I have told my husband many times when Bush was "selling" us the Iraq War, when he and Tony Blair were planning it that:
#1 His facial expressions indicated he didn't believe what he was saying and selling the public to be true. #2 He and Tony felt to me like two college kids who were plotting to put the Volkswagen on top of the Ad. Bldg. Unfortunately they never seemed to me to be embarking on something with such serious consequences. I would very much appreciate your comments on the above.
A: Yes, I agree with you. The problem is most Americans bought it and now have buyers remorse.
Q: The whole topic and study of body language has always fascinated me. I recently finished a book by Allan & Barbara Pease on the topic. Do you have any more that you can recommend?
A: Their new book is absolutely wonderful for someone looking to learn about body language. If you are looking for something with an academic spin, I would recommend Nonverbal Communication, The Unspoken Dialogue by Burgoon, Buller and Woodall. Also, be on the lookout for my upcoming book which will be coming out early next year.
Q: If a person scratches their head, and looks down after you ask them a question; .. Are they thinking how to lie, or are seriously contemplating the answer honestly?
A: Often times scratching the head, especially when done slowly and methodically, is part of the contemplation process. Generally, the head scratch and eyes cast downward would be indicative of accessing a feeling or memory of a feeling. However, without more clues, I would have to say there is also the possibility of it being indicative of feeling guilt.
Q: Is it true that men who put their thumbs in their belt loops are more prone to be perverts?
A: I think you are referring to the infamous "thumbs in belt gesture" which is rather aggressive. However, it is not an intentional sign of aggression. Typically a man will use this to emphasize the area he feels is significant for a woman to notice. It allows them to demonstrate what they believe to be their dominant status. It is not directly related to a man's level of perversion.
Q: I moved up from staff to supervision. Now, I am in charge of my old co-workers and they hate me for it - and, no one will listen to me. Any suggestions?
A: Start out by acknowledging the awkwardness of the situation and telling them that this is a learning curve for all and that you will all work together to acheive the common good. Over time, work to energize your staff and make them feel good about working with you. How? Practice what you preach. If you ask them to stay late and work, set a good example and stay late with them. Demonstrate teamwork
Q:My husband and I get into these really horrific arguments sometimes and then don't speak for hours. Later, after I calm down and look back and think how ridiculous they were. How could we love each other so much one minute and then hate each other the next?
A: When two people feel strongly about an issue - their ability to focus goes out the window. We become engulfed with emotion and we lose our capability to communicate rationally. Start recognizing the signs earlier on, stop yourself from losing control and take a moment to regroup. If you begin to make some changes, he will follow.
Q: Do you read photos of people?
A: I did this in the past - I might start again. I'll let you know in ATF.
Q: How do I read body language to know if a girl is flirting with me?
A: The easiest way is with her eye contact. If you catch her watching you wait to see if she drops her eyes down for a few seconds and then takes a quick glance up again. If she does, she is interested. Usually, she will also be smiling shyly.
Q: Is a person who wears glasses more likely to get a job over someone who does not?
A: You don't mention what field the job might be in. However, using generalities, in an initial impression, individuals who wear glasses are perceived to be more studious and intelligent. That first impression does tend to stick so they might have a slight leg up on someone without glasses. If someone asks me about the Halo Effect, I will discuss that next week!
Q: I have heard that first impressions are formed in just the first four minutes. How is it possible for us to judge that quickly if we like someone?
A: According to new research out of Princeton University our brains decide whether a person is attractive and trustworthy within a tenth of a second. Who has a full four minutes to waste?
Q: I feel like I have no friends. How do people make others like them?
A: You can't force people to like you, however, you can slightly manipulate the playing field so they see you in your best light. The quick and dirty answer is listen to them, smile at them, nod your head at them when they speak and show compassion - all the while keeping quiet. People can spend hours talking about themselves and will if you allow them to. People enjoy listeners and like others who are willing to be a captive audience. Keep checking back, I will write an article over the next couple of weeks which will discuss all the manipulative things you can do to allow others to see you in a positive light for the long haul. Friendships need to be 2 way. The quick and dirty way will help others to like you, however, you need to find friends whose company you enjoy as well.
Q: In one of your audios you indicate that women are much better at reading signals than men are. Why is that?
A: This is an interesting topic which I will explore further over the next couple of weeks. The short answer is that women have a bigger corpus collosum allowing women to transfer data back and forth between the hemispheres (using both sides of the brain to process information) much quicker and women have larger limbic systems allowing them to be more in touch with their feelings.
Q: You have not given us a list recently of your favorite books. Any good reads as of late?
A: New reads: How to Spot A Liar by Gregory Hartley and Maryann Karinch - interesting - lots of good information. The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls - very good. Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy by Noam Chomsky - enlightening.
Q: I have an employee who constantly blames everything and everybody else for his shortcomings. I am at my wit's end as to how to deal with him. Of course, he has to practically commit murder in order for me to fire him as you know.
A: Anger will only worsen this situation. First, speak directly to the employee keeping yourself completely in control, demonstrating body language that he/she will read as positive, sympathetic and caring (contact me if you need help in this area :). Focus only on the problem at hand (the worst thing people do when arguing is bringing up 3-4 other issues to prove a point). Listen to what the employee haws to say and then discuss options. Work towards solutions and leave angry emotions out of it. Put together a plan of action and keep a log to confirm it. Once the employee knows you will not stand for xbehavior, they might be reprogrammed after a month of working together to take the responsibility. If they are not, you have sufficient cause as well as evidence for termination.
Q: What is positive body language. It doesn't make sense to me that body language can be considered positive or negative.
A: Similarly to words, body language can leave a conversant feeling positive or negative. How does that work? In the same way we can verbalize "I don't like you" we can close off our body to allow the same message to scream out of us. For instance, approaching a stranger who is scowling at you and has his/her arms folded is a good indication that perhaps they are not interested in you. On the flip side, we can easily verbalize "I'm excited". We can also allow our body language to say it for us with a wide grin, crinkled skin around the eyes, forward lean and crunched up shoulders. When one discusses positive body language they are really talking about body language that indicates they are positive and indicates they want to allow others to feel positive.
Q: I want my bedroom to be as romantic as possible. Can you recommend a good color to use as a base for romance.
A: Heres a quick Feng Shui basic 101 about colors: pink is the true color of romance. The combination and red, which creates a mood of passion, and white which is the color of new birth and new beginnings, is considered perfect for a relationship, thus the bedroom should have some pink thrown in.
Q: I am training for the NYC marathon this year and I know you ran it previously. I am starting to get bored with running. I don't want to quit now but every run has become a struggle, even the short ones. Can you make any suggestions?
A: Do what I did. Hypnosis, hypnosis, hypnosis. It was very difficult for me to maintain my motivation for the marathon once the weather became really chilly. However, you only have a month left - a little motivation will go a long way. If you are unfamiliar with hypnosis, go to my other website: www.TonyaReiman.net and look under motivational hypnosis. You will feel 10x better - I know I did.
Q: I never sleep at night because I am constantly worried about my children's health. What can I do to distract my mind?
A: I would suggest hypnosis. It is very easy to make your own self hypnosis CD just by simply reading a script and playing it back when you have trouble sleeping. Hypnosis does wonders for sleep and relaxation.
Q: What is the difference between manipulation and your methods of building rapport?
A: Very little, actually.
Q: When is your book on body language for interviewing coming out?
A: The e-book version will be out by the end of summer - that's all I know right now.
Q: What body language signs can I look for that love may be fading?
A: The main sign I would suggest would be eye contact. Does the love of your life still maintain good eye contact with you? Is he/she able to look you in the eye and tell you they love you? Eye contact is usually the first thing to go when they are looking to leave.
Q: I attended one of your seminars where you spoke about pupil dilation. You can tell me a little more about this fascinating topic.
A: Pupil dilation is the natural response to seeing something you like or something that interests you. The pupils will dilate to let more of what you are looking at in. Pupil dilation is a physiological response to excitement and an excellent tool to use for monitoring arousal, interest, and liking. Interestingly enough, when you look at someone you are attracted to, your pupils will dilate. Subconsciously, the other person will perceive this and assume that you like them - what happens, they become more attracted to you because on a subconscious level they recognize that you are attracted to them and we like people who like us... Confusing?? It shouldn�t be after you read it once or twice. Many years ago, women used a plant extract known as belladonna because it caused pupil dilation and women realized men found this trait more attractive. I will follow this quick answer up with an article over the next few weeks. This subject is simply to irresistible to not delve into.
Q: How can I make myself more attractive to others?
A: Here are some quick tips to help others find you more appealing: Maintain eye contact, smile often, let others speak while you listen intently, hold your posture in a good upright manner, never get into someone's personal zone and finally, keep yourself in shape. If you are indeed overweight, join a diet group and give yourself a real challenge. Commit to change and good things will follow.
Q: In your opinion, do I need to have a degree in order to move up in the business world?
A: This depends on the career you are choosing. By and large, life experience is more significant than a piece of paper, however, sometimes you need that piece of paper to get through the door.
:Q: What does hypnosis feel like?
A: I get this question on almost a daily basis from clients. Most people believe that once hypnotized they will enter into some zombie land during which time the hypnotist will have complete and utter control over them. This is not the case. Hypnosis is a natural state which we enter into almost every day. One of the best ways for people to easily relate to hypnosis is to remember a time when they were driving from one place to another while in deep thought. Suddenly, they were at their destination with little or no memory of arriving there. This is known in the field as "Highway Hypnosis". How does this happen? Remarkably enough, the mind gets divided between the task at hand (driving) and the deep thoughts the individual is contemplating. It is an everyday occurrence which people tend to overlook. In essence, one stream of conscious (some would say the subconscious) is driving the car while another stream of conscious deals with the thoughts at hand. If you have experienced this phenomena, you have experienced hypnosis and will know what it feels like. Usually, hypnosis will feel like a nice state of relaxation. Perhaps that state between awake and twilight sleep. First time hypnotees will usually return to the waking state suggesting they were not "under" only to be shocked to acknowledge the length of time that has passed (time distortion is a big tell-tale sign of hypnosis). In general, think of hypnosis as a journey of relaxation.
Q: I'm in sales and I have a hard time trying to convince someone that my product is better than product X, what is the quickest way to close the sale?
A: Well, since you don't mention what you sell, I will give you a generic answer. GAIN TRUST. Trust is one of the most significant traits an individual has to offer. People can be very suspicious of anyone trying to get their business and change their minds. You need to convince your clients/customers that you are genuine, knowledgeable and in for the long haul. What does this mean? It means you must know your facts. You must know all the information about your own product as well as your competitors products. Give them a reason to listen to you and have confidence in you and your sales will go up.
Q: My friend told me that if a person crosses their arms they are being unconsciously defensive - do you agree?
A: Here is the deal on arm crossing. Perhaps the individual is just cold. Perhaps this is a comfortable stance for them and it is just a habit. Can it mean they are defensive? Absolutely. However, you cannot use arm crossing as a sole basis for determining someone is defensive withouth looking for other signals. Look for clusters of signals and postures. Is their chin down? Are they leaning back instead of standing up straight or leaning forward? Are their eyes "slit-like"? Do they appear to be overly rigid in their stance? Are they standing with their legs crossed as well their arms? Linking signals together can let you know if an individual is agitated, uncomfortable or feeling defensive.
Q: At what age do children going from innocent to delinquent?
A: I would never go so far to say that children go from innocent to delinquent. They might travel quite quickly between naive and "knowing it all" as so many adolescents think they do. The answer to this is also area dependent. All children need love and caring and a watchful eye, however, where you are and how much parental involvement you require plays a very crucial role in what you are exposed to. Growing up by the housing projects in Brooklyn where my friends and I traveled wherever we wanted to go via foot and bus, I was probably witness to far more at an earlier age than my children who live in the suburbs will be (that is not to say that the suburbs are any less perilous, however, my children need me to take them where they are required to be therefore I have a stronger monitor on them than my parents did on me). By and large, roughly age 12 is when I believe children become more "spirited" and things begin to change significantly.
Q: What is the reptilian brain and why do I have one?
A: The oldest region of the brain that we know of is the brain stem or reptilian brain which is deep down in the brain extending up from your spinal cord. Why is it called reptilian? Because it is similar to that of alligators and komodo dragons. The reptilian brain has a single purpose and focus: survival. It is our instinct, our survival mechanism. This is the irrational and primal component of us. This is our fight or flight reaction. The part of us that loses control and overreacts to events. The nonverbal part of us that can be stimulated with the right words. The part of us that reacts with our heart instead of our head. The reptilian brain is obsessive, compulsive and paranoid. However, you need the reptilian brain to survive. This part of the brain controls breathing and heart beat.
Q: I am getting a sinking feeling that my husband is cheating on me but I don�t know how to confirm it. Can I do that with body language?
A: You can't confirm anything unless you have it on camera or video. However, there are a few signs you can look for: First of all, aside from body language, one of the biggest indicators of cheating is a change in appearance. If you notice your husband is suddenly taking much greater care of his appearance and adding in cologne when he never wore it before, start to question it. Also, subtle signs like when he hugs you is he pulling away or is he giving you a full frontal hug? Does he maintain eye contact with you (a very big sign of intimacy)? Also, are you in sync with him? Do you both sit or stand the same way while talking? Are you romantic? All these subtle cues can tell a story.
Q: Is everyone hypnotizable?
A: The majority of the people are hypnotizable to one degree or another. Hypnosis can be described as easily as being thoroughly engrossed in a book and not hearing another individual speak to you. Some will have a greater ability to experience hypnosis right out of the gate but just like riding a bicycle you can improve your hypnosis capabilities with practice.
Q: Do you believe in the NLP eye accessing cues?
A: Some studies have completely debunked the eye access cues. However, I think the jury is still out. Down the road I will do an entire piece of eye access cues and you can try them out for yourself.
Q: I have been watching the president and based on his body language, I believe he is covering something up. What do you think?
A: I think you are probably right.
Q: What are some of your favorite TV shows?
A: There are only a few shows I actually make time to watch - Sopranos which I look forward to each and every week and NOW with David Brancaccio. I thoroughly enjoy comedies so you might catch me watching a sitcom now and then but no regulars.
Q: What is the best color to wear as a woman to a job interview?
A: Any dark colored suit should be fine. Truth be told, unless you are headed for a very trendy office, make sure you are wearing a skirt suit. Pant suits have not been fully accepted by the more traditional companies yet. I would suggest a navy or black suit with a white blouse.
Q: I'm interested in a guy at work but every time I go to speak to him he backs up away from me. What can I do to see if he likes me?
A: First, I would never recommend dating someone at work. Secondly, if you want to maintain even a work environment I would suggest keeping some distance. Whenever I hear someone is backing away I automatically assume you have entered into his personal space which is a definite no-no.
Q: How can you tell for sure if someone is lying?
A: You can never tell anything for sure by reading body language. You can, however, pick up on subtle cues that might indicate a person is lying. What you are looking for, in essence, is incongruency. Is there a part of the facial expression, words or body language that doesn't mesh? Do they have their hand covering their mouth, are they avoiding eye contact (a skilled liar may be able to maintain eye contact), scratching the nose() or any portion of the face as if to hide the part of the body that is lying. There are also the more obvious body language cues such as sweating, trembling voice, gulping, blushing, nervously doodling, etc.
Also, you can watch their eyes. Typically, when a person is constructing something in their mind, they look up and to the right (this is not always guaranteed but put in place with other cues and you chances of being accurate get higher and higher).
There are a couple of variables you need to take into account before you can deduct a reasonable assumption - such as how well you know a person, perhaps they are just nervous (some of these body language signals would be present in a nervous person as well) and not lying.
Note: All body language is subject to variables. Body Language Experts can take a gesture, and combine it with other gestures and movements to get an idea of what frame of mind a person is in. There are some obvious body language signals that individuals use, however, even these can be open to interpretation
Q. I have a relationship with someone who walks away every time an argument is started. He will not even discuss things with me - just leaves. How can I get him to listen to my needs?
Most of the time, men and woman will have different attitudes about "arguments" . Remember, men are from mars - woman are from venus - we really do think differently and this stems mostly from the childhood occurrences that we each experienced. Maybe he is afraid of confrontations. Maybe he does not know how to fight fair. Whatever the situation, avoidance can only last so long before a relationship begins to deteriorate.
I would first try to calmly tell my mate that we needed to discuss xyz situation (said in a calm, positive manner) and explain to him that you it bothers you the way he avoids the situation at hand. Show him the serious repercussions which might develop from avoiding a specific subject. You can do this in writing if need be (sometimes this can be tough as the written word can appear much harsher than the spoken word). However, being able to read and then having time to think about what you have written might make things easier on him when the time comes to actually discuss it. Make it clear that you are not looking for a brawl, you want simply to express yourself and have him express himself without fear of humiliation, rejection or punishment
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