How you conduct yourself is as important as what you say.
The way you sit down, place your arms, hold your head and look at people can give away much, much more than you’re actually willing to share.
Don’t hold objects in front of you – Do you sit down with your handbag on your lap? Or do you grab the closest cushion and cover your belly area with it? When you do this, you’re putting across the signal that you’re either not comfortable with how you look or that you’re uncomfortable with the situation. Avoid this on dates and interviews, especially.
Don’t look down – When you’re speaking to someone, look them directly in the eye. Not doing so either tells them you’re disinterested or that you’re shy. At times, it can even make it seem like you have something to hide or that you’re lying.
Crossing your arms – This, once again, places an object between yourself and the person opposite you. Moreover, this can also mean that you’re bored or being defensive. Leaving your arm uncrossed shows openness and confidence.
Slouching – Bad posture automatically puts people off and there’s actually a psychological reason for this. Confident people sit and stand tall, with shoulders back and head held high. To avoid slouching while sitting down, sit at the edge of the chair. When standing, simply raise yourself to your full height. It may feel abnormal at first, but it’ll soon become second nature.
Fidgeting – Stop looking at your watch every five minutes, or playing with your hair, or playing with the fork. If you feel the need to have something in your hands, grab your drink and hold it firmly and steadily.
Shifting – Shifting your body weight from one leg onto the other tells the other person you’re bored or not comfortable with the situation. It’s okay to do it once in a while, particularly if you’re wearing heels, but be aware of doing it too often.
Leaning – Leaning too close to the other person makes them feel uncomfortable. Leaning too far away makes you seem disinterested. Instead, leave about half a metre between you and face them directly… And don’t forget to look them in the eye!
Eyes – If you’re in an important meeting or a date, avoid narrowing your eyes at the other person as much as possible. This is a universal action to convey disdain or disrespect and it’s picked up very easily.
Ultimately, always make sure you’re comfortable with what you’re wearing. This will make you feel better about yourself, increasing your confidence and lowering the risk of anything mentioned above. And remember: you’re in that meeting, you’re at that date, you’ve been given a chance in that interview: you are worthy of it, believe it.
What else puts people off?
Let us know in the comments section below.