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Head tilt shows interest.

Head tilt shows interest.

The head tilted at forty-five degrees from the center line of the body indicates interest and intrigue. It says “I am receptive, comfortable, and friendly.” The head tilt is one of the very significant and prominent postures that everyone should be aware of, especially educators of any kind. A professor for example, can gauge his efficacy as an instructor by the degree to which his audience tilts their head. Head tilting is also very difficult to fake because our minds will resist the posture when we dislike what we are hearing or the people around us, making it a very honest and reliable gesture.

Head on, means passive listening for example, head slightly tilted shows moderate interest and head at its maximum forty-five degrees shows full immersion. A teacher might see variations across his audience, and also across the subject matter. Head tilting is not an all or nothing phenomenon. This makes it easy to measure the success of a presentation nonverbally and tweak it as necessary.

Dogs also tilt their head, usually by engaging them in human conversations, so the root of this mechanism could simply be the state of being confusion. The head tilt is also a submissive gesture as it exposes the neck making it vulnerable to attack. One of the more prominent courtship displays is the exposed neck, and when done by women, is particularly alluring. This is examined in a later chapter.