Micro Expressions and Body Language – from Read People Like a Book Audiobook by Patrick King

We all know how to read macroexpressions—those facial movements that last up to four seconds in duration—but there are quicker, more fleeting expressions that are so fast, they could easily be missed by the untrained eye.

01:28 Within the brain, there are two neural pathways related to facial expressions. Remember that analyzing facial expressions is a powerful method of understanding others that’s more than “skin-deep,” but it’s not foolproof.

11:00 Body Talk

Body language, for instance, may be just as powerful a language to learn to read and comprehend as facial expressions. After all, the face is simply a part of the body. Why focus on just one part when people’s postures and general movements can speak just as eloquently? These days, our world is very abstract and the things that threaten us are more verbal and conceptual—but the old machinery for expression, fear, aggression, curiosity, etc., is all still there, only perhaps expressed a little more subtly.

16:49 Let’s consider what are called “pacifying behaviors.” These can offer a key insight into someone who is feeling stressed, unsure, or threatened. Essentially, a pacifying behavior is what it sounds like—the (unconscious) attempt to self-soothe in the face of some perceived threat.

23:27 What about the legs? These are often overlooked since they might be concealed under a desk, but legs and feet are powerful indicators too.

A lot of the art of body language is, once pointed out, rather intuitive. This is because each of us is actually already fluent in its interpretation. It is merely allowing ourselves to de-emphasize the verbal for a moment to take notice of the wealth of nonverbal information that’s always flowing between people. None of it is really concealed. Rather, it’s a question of opening up to data coming in on a channel we are not taught to pay attention to.

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Categories: Voice over Work