Sharon Sayler

Member: Video Tips 1 – 10

Video Tip #1 – Breathing

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Breathing seems simple enough, so why would we bother covering it in a video about nonverbal communication? Because the most useful nonverbal I’ve learned is how to control my breathing. Breathing naturally and comfortably, no matter the situation, delivers a nonverbal message of confidence and poise. Breathing is more than supplying oxygen to your lungs. It profoundly influences your mood, how your brain functions, how sensitive your nerves are, and how tired or alert you feel, as well as those around you.

Video Tip #2 – Gestures

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A gesture is a movement or series of movements used to communicate a message. Gestures and nonverbal movements or behaviors are part of who we are. Most often our movements are organic and spontaneous. Sometimes they represent what we are saying, and sometimes they don’t. We often display emotions and thoughts nonverbally. You want to be sensitive to the power that nonverbals have and deliberately choose those that support your message. Match your words with intentional gestures, those gestures made for a specific purpose.

Video Tip #3 – Eye Contact

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Eye contact is the easiest and most immediate nonverbal that people notice. It can be subtle or direct, and knowing how to mix the two is a major part of the art of building relationships. How much is too much or too little varies with the culture, gender, and context. Eye contact works best when both parties feel it is just right. Therefore, take your cues from the other person and match their preference for how much direct eye contact to use.

Video Tip #4 – Context Rules

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Because people are so adaptable, it is usually less accurate to evaluate small snippets of body behavior without knowing how someone usually behaves (baseline behaviors), the context of the situation, or his or  her current emotional state. We all act differently in different situations. We are one way around our siblings and another way around our coworkers; therefore, blanket statements about behaviors are not recommended. No one is always or never one way.

Video Tip #5 – People love to learn from other people

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People love to learn from other people. These nonverbal movement and gesture sequences tell a story or show step-by-step directions. They are most often used to answer questions or problems of what, how, how much, and where. Gestures that teach are not about how perfect your representation is. They are about how comfortable most people are with visual learning. Attention goes where it is directed. The key to successful teaching gestures is the ability to keep listeners’ eyes where you want them. Consistent and logical motions are an essential component of facilitating learning and the listener's long-term memory.

Video Tip #6 – How To be Taken Seriously

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This video has a bit of over-exaggeration to emphasize how we can use our voice to be taken seriously. The higher your position, the more permission you have to use the credible voice. This is the voice pattern to use when stressing or sending information and working with issues. This voice pattern maintains the same flat sound almost until the end of the phrase or sentence where it drops as if you were creating a period at the end of the statement.  Think "Bond, James Bond".

Video Tip #7 – How To Build Relationships

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People who naturally use this voice pattern are often described as easy to get along with and helpful, and they develop rapport easily. In business, you most often find, people in support and service positions using the connection voice pattern. No matter your position within a company or hierarchy, it is important to know the role both the credible and connection voice patterns play though.  In this 32-second video, you’ll learn to create a connection voice pattern.

Video Tip #8 – Foster good feelings in your listener

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This is one of my favorites! A gesture of Positive Relationship.  I say positive because all gestures must be viewed in context. A palm facing up can make a person feel good, appreciated, listened to, or encouraged, or you can look like a beggar….  This positive gesture of relationship looks natural and fosters the personal side of the relationship as nonverbally you just assigned positive words such as "perfect", "wonderful" and "amazing" to the listener.

Video Tip #9 – Manage with eye contact

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Managing with eye contact send all sorts of messages, this one has to be used with intention and the right context. It will either get them laughing or upset – so FAIR WARNING – use this one with caution… Managing others through eye contact can be more effective than a verbal reprimand; it can also help a person save face in a group. If you are in an authority position and this approach does not work, consider withholding eye contact, but only do so if you are in a position of authority. If you use management by eye contact or withhold eye contact and are in the lower position, you are sending out a message of pouting and pettiness.

Video Tip #10 – Those Pesky Fidgets…

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Even though fidgets can calm us, those pesky, jerky movements or anxious behaviors often make others uneasy. Because they often become habits, they can be difficult to stop, so people usually try to disguise them. Adjusting a cuff link, rubbing an earlobe, and picking lint off clothes are just a few examples of the infamous fidget. While they’re a comforting behavior, they send a clear, nonverbal signal of nervousness.

 

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