It is a well-known fact that having effective communication skills is indispensable in our professional and personal life. However, not everyone recognizes that we do not only communicate verbally but a great part of our daily communication is through non-verbal reactions: facial expressions, gestures, eye-contact, posture and tone of voice. The ability to comprehend and use non-verbal tools and body language can help us to become a better communicator and build better relationships.
When it comes to interacting with others, we continuously send and receive non-verbal signals. We send out these messages both when we actually talk and when we are staying silent. Sometimes, our verbal and non-verbal signals form a contrast and the receiver has to choose which one to believe. People tend to lean towards accepting the non-verbal message if it contradicts the verbal one, as that one can seem more natural, an unconscious language that communicates our true thoughts. Therefore, it is very important to know how to send out the correct message which we wish to get across. If you thrive to be a better communicator, it is necessary to become more sensitive to others’ and your own body language and non-verbal signals.
There are many different ways of non-verbal communication and it is important to be aware of how you are utilizing these in order to improve upon your communication skills. Firstly, facial expressions, the human face is extremely expressive countless emotions without uttering any words. Facial expressions are probably the most easily to recognize as they are mostly universal across cultures. Thus, it is significant to make sure that what you are trying to communicate is not contradicted by your facial expressions.
Body movements, posture and gestures are probably less easy to read. Considering how your perception can change of people by how they sit, walk, stand up or hold their head can help you understand how your own bodily reactions influence the way in which you are seen by others. Probably the most influential way of non-verbal communication is eye-contact. Since the visual sense is dominant for most people, maintaining an attentive but not too intensive eye-contact with the other party is crucial to build relationships and to maintain fruitful conversations. Another factor to which it is useful to pay attention is the way in which we manage space. We all have a need for a certain amount of personal space during conversations; however, recognizing that there is a great a great cultural difference in how we interpret this amount is crucial. For example, in Europe or in the USA this space tends to be smaller than in Great Britain. Keeping all these factors in mind can influence and enhance the effectiveness of communication and relationships