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How Body Language Helps You Communicate

two couples gathered in a well lit restaurant for brunch and cocktails

By now, you’ve probably read or heard that only seven percent of communication is conducted verbally. Therefore, body language plays a huge role in our interactions with other people. It’s something you will almost certainly gain a deeper appreciation of if you experience hearing loss and an audiologist can help you understand the different components to help manage your daily situations.

Body language is crucial for everyone, including people who have not experienced hearing loss. For individuals that do wear hearing aids or need a little extra help to follow conversations, the following pointers should work wonders.

Head Movements

A person’s head movements can provide telling insights into what a person is saying. For starters, they may nod or shake their head in answer to your questions. This, combined with facial expressions like smiling or frowning, can be very useful when trying to comprehend their response – not least if hearing loss means you didn’t quite catch everything they said.

Meanwhile, if a person’s head movements contradict their words, it could mean that they are telling a lie or simply do not have any real conviction behind their words. Whether you experience hearing problems or not, this can be a powerful asset for managing future social interactions. Consistency between head movements and spoken words is king.

Facial Movements

The influence of a smile or a frown has already been discussed. However, facial expressions can tell us so much more. If a person constantly looks away it could mean that they are shy, ashamed, guilty or telling a lie. Meanwhile, if their eyes keep subverting away from you while you talk, they could be looking for a way out of the conversation.

An audiologist can provide further insight into facial movements and what they mean. Facial expressions that convey happiness, sadness, anger, surprise and fear are universal too. While some are obvious, other signs are a little more subtle. Learning to read them can be very useful for someone with hearing loss.

Hand Movements

The hands are an integral part of communication. If you experience hearing loss, learning to use sign language can yield life-changing results. However, sign language isn’t the only way to analyze hand movements. Simple gestures like a thumbs down or an ok sign are universally known. But there is so much more to consider. 

If a person touches their face with the palm of the hand in a light manner, it could show interest or intrigue. Conversely, if they are using the hand to support their head, it suggests boredom or tiredness. Scratching the forehead, meanwhile, can be a show of confusion or disbelief. Ear touching could be a visual clue that the person wants you to listen to.

Feet Movements

If a person’s feet are pointed towards you, it shows that they are interested in your conversation. This can be a positive sign when dating or can simply express a friend or colleague’s trust in you. Conversely, when the feet are pointed away from you, it’s a negative sign of body language. It could mean that they are looking for an exit.

Foot tapping can convey anxiety or be a sign that they are not listening properly to your conversation. As well as foot positioning and movement, posture can be a key feature. When the back is straight and the shoulders are straight, it shows confidence. Conversely, drooping shoulders can equate to sadness or negativity.

Body Movements

The influence of a person’s posture will give you visual indicators. However, it’s not the only way to read a person’s body movements. When someone turns their back to you or turns to the side, that’s a clear and obvious sign. However, there are several others that an audiologist or body language coach can help you dissect.

Physical space between different people can express a host of emotions. Communication in this way will rely heavily on the situation. However, being stood close or far apart can convey everything from happiness and intimacy to displeasure and aggression. It is, therefore, a significant aspect of human interaction.

Body language is an integral part of human communication, irrespective of whether you have hearing loss or not. Appreciating the different indicators, along with factors like a person’s tone of voice, will help you follow conversations with far greater clarity. In turn, it will enrich the interactions and give you the best shot at expressing yourself too.

To learn more about the importance of body language and how it can support your hearing loss management strategy contact Advanced Hearing Services at 970-221-5249 now!