Tag Archive for Target

How Men Should Gaze

Positive gaze

The eyes are the windows to your soul.

As mentioned, men can use a variety of ways to attract subtle attention. In accordance with the rules of the mating dance, men can see these tactics to create interest and attract women. The real goal of male sexual body language is to induce a woman to look at him, to notice him, the rest is the responsibility of verbal dialogue. It doesn’t get a whole lot more extensive than that.

Once he has her eye, a man should use proper gaze patterns. Most men will make the mistake of smiling too quickly or smiling before she has even noticed him. Worse perhaps, is their grin will appear etched on their face which appears to women as gawking and is off-putting. Men should always limit gazing to three seconds or less, any longer than this comes off as staring or leering. To start, men should first try to establish eye contact, then once established, wait a fraction of a second then flash a quick smile before turning away shyly as if being busted with the hand in the cookie jar. If this feels uncomfortable, use what is called a “slow growing smile” where the smile is directed with eye contact and seems to grow in direct response to the woman.

Mutual gaze.

Mutual gaze.

Men should always wait until eye contact is established before smiling. This tells the target that he is smiling at her rather than smiling generally, or smiling at someone in her direction, or just smiling because he’s heard someone say something funny. Eye contact is the most reliable way to anchor a smile. The effect men are trying to convey is that he has noticed her, got caught looking, but isn’t apologetic because he sincerely finds her attractive. Whenever men hold mutual eye contact followed by a smile they should hold it for at least two to three seconds before breaking it by looking downward. Men should never look to the side when finishing an eye gaze pattern, or break eye contact immediately once established, since it will indicate to a women that he was merely stealing a look, or was just caught staring. In either case, it sends the message that no interest was present, he was just scanning the room, or he’s already in a committed relationship and was checking another women out, but isn’t capable or willing to act on his eye language.

Once eye contact is broken for the first time, it is important for the man to immediately reestablish it, followed by even more powerful smile. If this second bout yields a smile in return there’s a good chance an approach will be welcomed. Women need some time to decide if attraction is present, just like men need time to isolate interesting targets from all other women present. This is why the first sequence rarely produces a smile, whereas the second is a much better possibility. If a smile happens on the first try, it tells us that she was thinking about him even before their first glance, which is also a strong signal.

Grooming And Preening

A woman grooming a man is a good sign that she's trying to keep him looking good for her own benefit.

A woman grooming a man is a good sign that she’s trying to keep him looking good for her own benefit.

Grooming includes smoothing clothing, rearranging attire, rubbing the hands, glancing in a mirror and, applying lipstick, fixing the hair amongst many others. While not a grooming gesture per se, women can also provocatively leave buttons unbuttoned, especially a button-up blouse in effort to peek men’s curiousity. These are all signals of interest within the proper context. We all, men included, groom and preen ourselves in order to appear more presentable and attractive to others. The more concerned we are with our looks, the more it indicates our desire to show off and attract and the timing with which this happens is extremely important because it indicates to us the purpose of the adjustments and whom the fixes are meant for. For example, if a woman appears relaxed in her attire, perhaps wearing comfortable jeans and a sloppy sweat shirt rather than something more “put together”, and stumbles upon someone she feels is attractive, she might begin to panic and hyper groom in effort to minimize whatever damage she figures she has caused to her image. Grooming tells us that she feels his opinion matters which is no different from men. Men will smooth out ties or a shirt, button up a jacket to appear more formal, smooth out their pants or fix their hair.

Grooming gestures become particularly powerful delivered with eye contact too, not just with respect to proximity and visibility. Eye contact for example is an “anchor” for sexual signals as it hooks the signal to a particular target. Grooming absent of a target and hence eye contact, might mean, either, the desire to attract in general as we saw in the “parade” where women are just acting like magnets to see what sticks, or else a superficial desire to appear put together for it’s own sake. Grooming and preening can also be done on other people to indicate interest. A woman might pluck some imaginary lint from a man’s clothing that she fancies, while another she detests might go an entire evening with food stuck to the side of his face. She might also fix a man’s hair, straighten and adjust clothing or rub his back, all methods of showing interest. The touching and proximity that comes as a result of grooming is not just incidental, it’s the driving force. Touching is a strong indicator of interest especially when initiated by a woman.

Above: Preening gestures indicate that a woman is preparing herself for someone else to touch her but when a woman plucks some imaginary lint from a man’s clothing she’s probably interested. She might also fix a man’s hair, straighten and adjust clothing or rub a man’s back to show interest. Back touching, scratching and massaging is an evolutionary throwback when we used to have totally hairy bodies and removing tics would have been a major hygienic necessity. It’s where “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” came from. Regardless, touching and close proximity when done by a woman to a man, can be taken as a strong sign of sexual interest. Learn how to build a proper foundation for dating and attraction by reading the Ebook Body Language Project: Dating, Attraction and Sexual Body Language!

The Room Encompassing Glance

Caught in a glance.

Caught in a glance.

The “room encompassing glance” is a body language sequence used to attract the attention of men. It is done subconsciously, yet in a very specific manner, by women who are available and seeking. To begin the sequence, woman look or scan the room, which is usually a club, bar, or other social gathering, containing plenty of likely targets. This first glance serves an assessment purpose to see what is going on, who is about, and to satisfy her curiousity. In other words, it isn’t anything unique as a sexual cue but does serve a sort of “shopping” or browsing purpose. More frequent shopping forays where eyes are cast around the room lasting five to ten seconds begins to have more meaning. This is a woman who is in a seeking phase and really wishes to find a solid target.

If she spots someone she is interested in she will quickly avert her eyes downward, to show that she isn’t a threat and to show submission, and then she will take a second look. This second glance is directed only toward a man of interest and is not cast around the room. It will be short and she will rotate her head twenty-five to forty degrees to the side then look away (usually downward) within about three seconds. Women usually continue this behavior until they meet their target’s eyes. At this point, the target and the woman will hold a mutual gaze lasting about three seconds. If eye contact isn’t met or the man does not properly receive the signal she will continue to repeat eye contact until he gets the idea. Sometimes it will require upwards of four to six times ladies, so be prepared! Eye contact of any kind is usually a signal of interest. On most occasions, this eye contact alone is powerful enough to entice men to approach, but not always.

Above: The room encompassing glance.

Summary – Chapter 11

This chapter focused on emotional body language. We began by discussing New York style body language called “displacement behaviour.” We saw that displacement behaviours include actions set to preoccupy in order to dehumanize the outside world – especially in more crowded areas. The list of behaviours included nail biting, gum chewing, grooming, tapping the does, head scratching or playing with jewelry, but can also mean looking and acting ‘out of touch’ or closed off.

Next, “fight or flight” was finally shifted to “freeze, flight or fight” finally putting it into the proper order. Following this was clenching behaviour where we found that actions such as gripping the wrist of the opposite hand in behind the back, or wringing the hands out like a wet article of clothing, are forms of restraint. We also hit on nervous hands and how shaking can tell us a lot about what sort of emotions a person is experiencing.

We then moved onto poor self image and the language that tells. Here we found that auto contacts including stroking the beard, rubbing the hands, tugging the ear, massaging the throat, pulling the fingers, rubbing the back of the neck and so forth, are linked to insecurity since they attempt to provide reassurance. We hit on eyebrow lowering and that when they are permanently lowered by the newly incarcerated it signifies easy prey for existing inmates. Interlaced fingers and palm finger stroking, on the other “hand”, were both labeled as emitted by those with negative thoughts. In the section on suckling and mouthing we saw that the mouth and lips provide a target for tactile gratification to provide comfort. Here we saw that anytime the fingers go to the mouth or lips to suckle, that our target is regressing to an infantile stage, and is trying to regain the security they felt as a child.

We found that compressed lips indicate stress, down-turned smile unhappiness, anger or tension, and lip pursing indicates that a thought, usually negative, is being processed. We found that tongues can depict deep concentration or a cheeky attitude, and that sneering signals contempt, disapproval and disrespect the world over. Ear language was covered next and we learned that ear grabbing refers to “hearing no evil” showing disbelief or an attempt to close off communication by blocking the ears. Hostile body language, on the other hand, was found to be more similar to sexual body language, but only in so much as the body language showed through figuratively onto ourselves when we would much rather inflict it onto others. Examples of such hostile body language included pulling or pinching at one’s own ears, cheeks, hair, or face. Next we covered the sequence by which bodies reject and then how they relax.

We discovered that the neck becomes particularly sensitive under pressure and like the cheeks, it becomes red and engorged with blood when we become nervous. Thus when people are under pressure they tend to touch or cover it so as to pacify. Women also tend to cover their “suprasternal notch” when they are experiencing anxiety. We found that people who don’t cross their legs are generally uncomfortable because crossing significantly reduces the ability to act quickly during confrontation and exit. Next we found that the eyes and the body can block unwanted thoughts and images, that blushing indicates emotion and anxiety, and that asymmetry can show when emotions are faked, gravity defying behaviours means people are happy, and that there are six universal facial expressions. We learned that asymmetry is what tells us honest expressions from fake ones. We also discovered that everyone, no matter how extroverted, requires emotional downtime, that timid people will cocoon and that guilty people will turtle. We also found in this chapter that full body hugs, where the chest and hips make contact, shows sexual intimacy, and that light hugs, where the shoulders touch shows friendship. Lastly we covered the “hug-ender cue” or the “tap out” that tells others that the hug has run its full course and one party wishes to submit. We concluded with a list of additional emotional body language.

Introduction – Chapter 10

Trying not to pay attention.

Trying not to pay attention.

It’s not a stretch to say that reading attentive and evaluative body language is a useful skill for everyone at one time or another. For teachers, attentive and evaluative body language cues are useful to read student interest and their level of active thought, for sellers it provides a gauge to the efficacy of a pitch, and to acquaintances at a social even, the level of engagement.

A presenter at a conference might want to measure his story telling skills and so might look for cues to “undivided attention”. He might therefore be interested in shortening presentation points that create fidgeting and shuffling. The salesman, on the other hand, also wants to avoid boredom, but needs to watch for evaluative gestures such as chin stroking, flared nostrils, pinching the bridge of the nose and rubbing the back of the neck to see how close he is to closing the sale and what level of decision making is at hand in his target. Does a chin stroking mean he’s already made up his mind and is mulling things over, or is he just satisfying and itch?

Naturally, as the stakes rise, so too does the importance in reading evaluative and attentive body language accurately, so it is important to keep these cues at hand. In this chapter, “attentive” refers to the level of interest expressed during an interaction whereas “evaluative” delineates indicators that a decision is in the process of being made. This chapter, while brief, covers a significant subset of the body language that happens as people are in thought, give undivided attention or lack thereof and show that they are preparing to reach a decision. We also hit on the hidden meaning of glasses, hand steepling, neck rubbing and a subset of additional evaluative gestures we might encounter in our daily lives.

Environment Plays On Height And Dominance

Standing up while others are seated instantly creates dominance.

Standing up while others are seated instantly creates dominance.

If your goal is to gain the dominance advantage, but nature dealt you the short stack, there are several ways to use your environment in your favour. One of which is to create a scenario where it is natural to present to a seated audience. Obviously this particular example is more suitable to a boardroom business meeting, but can also be amongst friends by roaming a room, rather than taking a fix seat while entertaining. When created an artificial scenario it would be wise to include ample comfortable seating to provide an incentive for people to plop themselves down. A man might use the standing advantage at a bar to pick up women by waiting for her sit instead of approaching her while she dances. Present to the seated naturally gives you a large height advantage.

This cop knows his game.  By keeping the suspect in his car he gains height-authority over him.

This cop knows his game. By keeping the suspect in his car he gains height-authority over him.

Stages by their nature are designed to give power to the speaker. Fewer interruptions from the audience is the direct result of being higher than them. It is very unnatural to address someone with any degree of authority from a lower position and we instinctively know this. If there are height differences and levels about a room, such as split levels or stairs, and your goal it to intimate or dominant someone, then use them. For example, standing on an upper step with your target below you will give you the upper hand every time. Addressing someone taller than you from an elevated position such that their height is negated will make them feel very uncomfortable and uneasy. They aren’t used to playing short stacked and they will probably do their best to rebalance the field in their favour when the opportunity arises. Try this experiment on door-to-door solicitors the next time they interrupt you. First, be sure to use the door as a barrier never quite opening it fully, and never ever invite them in. If you have a glass portion of your door, close the door slightly so as to be speaking through the glass. Ideally this will force them to address you from the next step which will be lower giving you at least a six inch height advantage. This is usually enough to stifle their pitch or at least annoy them. Next close and re-open the door at random intervals. This might seem cruel, but remember you never invited them, so they brought it upon themselves!

While lifts in shoes are out of style for men, there exits shoe brands and inserts that can add up to two inches of height. If you are 5’8”, then two inches can make a big difference in the height game, and put you into or above the average. Women know the power of heels all to well, and should use it to their advantage whenever possible in business and even in dating. The exception though is when the purpose is to build cooperation rather than asserting competence. Women should use heels in dating to set their benchmark height. It is universally recognized that women prefer men to be two to three inches taller than they are. By simply using a heel of that height and eliminating men who don’t stack up, they can immediately thwart unwanted advances. Most men won’t solicit from women taller than they are.

As we saw, forcing others to sit while we stand can helps neutralize height differences, but so too does mutually sitting. If both parties are forced to sit, the advantage is given to those that have the biggest rear ends rather than those with the longest legs. The extra cushion serves to prop them up! The largest differences in heights is largely due to the biggest bones in our bodies which is our legs, not our spines, although they do play a part. Sitting down, takes our legs out of commission. Next we should try to hold good posture and if our company has poor posture, we can negate all or most of the height difference. Sitting on opposite sides of the table negates height differences even further because separation makes it difficult to make the height comparison. The same tactic can be used while standing just by taking a step back.

An advanced, although cruel tactic includes sabotaging others by providing them with lower chairs. It’s not uncommon in the interview process to give prospects unpadded chairs with short legs. When multiple people are present, just claim the tallest chair! A chair with an abnormally tall back commonly used by royalty will make someone appear shorter due to perspective, but will also serve to make them appear more dominant and authoritative.

If presented with a power player who insists on interrupting and talking over you or others especially while seated, play their game. Instead of taking it sitting down, stand up, walk about the room, move away from the situation or move to the opposite side of the desk or table or use misdirection by looking out a window pretending to ponder his position. Each of these actions will unnerve them forcing them to up their game or concede. The simplest and most honest tactic is to hold better, more upright posture, which in and of itself can add inches over people with poor posture. Most people have a bad habit of slouching, so using better posture on its own makes you appear more confident by comparison.

If your objective is to maintain common ground instead of exploiting it, then the best bet it to try to level or lessen height differences instead of exploiting them. Tall women know this all to well, and can be found with poor posture usually because they stand out from the crowd and get teased as teenagers. Unfortunately, instead of walking tall, they hunch up trying to appear subordinate so they fit into the crowd unnoticed. Obviously, tall women who slouch are self-conscious of their height.

This not-withstanding reducing height differences fosters cooperation and reduces tension. Tall people should take notes and reverse all that was said above with respect to exploiting height differences. Most of what was mentioned was methods to use height to manipulate or create power imbalances. If the goal is to achieve cooperation, then we should be careful to try to level height differences instead of maximizing them. We should rarely show submission though, as it can be as disastrous as showing dominance when trying to build cooperation. We never want to appear weak even as we seek common ground.

Standing Positions And Their Hidden Meaning

There are four main ways in which a person might stand [a] Straight up with their feet together [b] feet slightly apart, but parallel [c] one foot forward and [d] legs crossed at the ankle.

The first posture with the legs straight and feet together is an attentive pose seen in obedient children when speaking to their parents. It is a neutral, honest pose and is found in adults of differing status like a boss and his employees. The second pose, as we saw earlier, where the legs are spread at shoulder width while standing, is a form of crotch display. This posture says “I’m going nowhere, and fast.” The standing crotch display can be made even more powerful by adding the thumbs in a belt loop, called the “cowboy pose.” The cowboy pose was made famous by old Western movies. The third posture where one foot is moved forward, with respect to the other, indicates subtle interest toward the direction in which the foot is advanced. To show interest, the foot will be moved toward the speaker, but it can also be moved away from the speaker toward someone we would rather have speak, or to the door when we wish to end the conversation. The foot takes the “first step” toward where the mind wishes it where.

The final pose where the legs are crossed at the ankle is a submissive posture. It reveals that the target isn’t ready to commit to a proposal, and shows reservation to the situation, but also that he isn’t ready to leave. The ankle cross is figurative denial of access to the body and mind. Our minds and bodies are linked so when we uncross our bodies we show others that we are willing to hear them out, which is an excellent indication that, our opinions either already match, or that there is at least a willingness to consider the facts.

An open posture while standing shows supreme confidence because it exposes the midsection to attack. When people meet for the first time, they will show timidity by crossing at the ankle. In fact, this is the most common way in which people will stand when meeting new people, those exempt will both, carry a higher status, and be aware of it.
Arm crossing, or tucking the hands in pockets, are two other ways to raise barriers when uncomfortable. These posture don’t mean negativity per se, they are simply indications that someone needs more time to acclimatize themselves to new people. Introverts over extroverts, will be found to hold this posture for much longer and more frequently than extroverts. In fact, extroverts might warm up to people so fast that they never show timidity at all, they usually jump right into any group and feel at home. When dealing with an introvert, on the other hand, offer to take them to a quiet and less busy environment to make them more comfortable. Offering a drink too, can give their hands something to do to breaking their rigidity. Providing an environment where your ideas might stick, first begins by removing barriers, even if they are nonverbal.


Feet together - attentive.

Feet together – attentive.

Normal standing posture with feet at shoulder width apart - shows calm confidence.

Normal standing posture with feet at shoulder width apart – shows calm confidence.

One foot pointed away - shows disinterest.

One foot pointed away – shows disinterest.


How does this posture appear fully nude?

How does the ‘cowboy posture’ appear fully nude?

Legs crossed at the ankles says I'm not happy - but I'm not going anywhere.

Legs crossed at the ankles says I’m not happy – but I’m not going anywhere.


Breaking The Mold – How To ‘Close’ The ‘Closed’

Handing someone a drink, papers, anything, can be an excellent way to open someone up for a sale.

Handing someone a drink, papers, anything, can be an excellent way to open someone up for a sale.

The research shows us that a significant amount of information is inhibited from reaching the brain when our bodies show closed body language. In one such study, two groups of students attended the same lecture. One group was instructed to hold their arms and legs crossed throughout, while the other received no such instructions. The group instructed to hold closed body language was found to have retained forty percent less information than the group that held open body language. The lecturer was also rated far more critically. Therefore, when presenting to someone with their arms crossed it is vitally important to use tactics that help them open up and drop negative cues. Not only will the retention of your message increase significantly, but so too will the probability that any agreement will take place.

It’s nearly impossible to formulate agreements with others who have their arms crossed or a myriad of other closed body postures. By simply opening your objective, they will be more receptive to your thoughts and ideas. This is why is it important, as closed body language arises, to immediately re-calibrate your tactics. If your target’s legs cross, have them stand up and move to the same side of the table to get a closer look at the material, or have them reach forward for something, forcing them to take a ready position with their bodies leaning toward you. If their arms are crossed, have them jot down notes on a piece of paper which you can express as being important for later, or have them examine a document which you can hand to them. You will want to carefully monitor their post position to see if after the item is discarded they return to their original closed body position. If they are adamant in keeping closed, they probably aren’t receiving the message to your favour.

Other ways to open people include handing them a cup of coffee, or glass of water, show them photographs of family or pets, handing them model cars or any other office artifact you might have noticed them examining with some interest. Handing them any object forces them to uncross their arms to reach for it thereby opening them. The object used isn’t vitally important, it just needs to be interesting enough to motivate them to reach for it. By doing a bit of research beforehand, you can probably find a mutual interest that can be exploited during the pitch to build rapport. This will prove especially useful if the meeting takes a turn for the worst. Being creative to re-open the conversation is an important tactic for everyone in business.

Put-Down Humour

Even when we laugh at the expense of others and their misfortunes we create togetherness and solidarity. Putdown humour is any humour that derives amusement at the expense of others. It can be demeaning jokes, teasing, sarcasm or even self-deprecating remarks. While putdowns can be effective to build bonds and friendship there exists certain rules of engagement. For example, a putdown must be within a friendly framework and we must follow certain agreed upon rules. Taking putdown humour too far can be hurtful, and particularly harsh putdowns can be used to elevate ourselves at the target’s expense, or equally, we too we can become victim of putdowns. For example, in a study by Susan Martin in 1978 out of American University it was shown that police officers who use putdown humour against female officers tended to use it because they felt uncomfortable with the notion of having females in a male dominated workplace. However, humour among, say men at a weekly poker night can foster belonging. Overall, men will use putdown humour more often than women and also tend to expect it. Practical jokes work similarly, and sporting teams frequently use pranks to welcome new members.

The real key is to avoid hitting on truisms about a person that can be hurtful. Making fun of someone for being ugly when in fact it is well known that they are confident beauty pageant winner or making fun of a sprinter for being slow, is in good fun, and will be well received. However, poking fun at someone who is rigid or uptight, by including this trait in a joke, it is sure to offend them and while it might have a leveling effect between two people, it serves no unifying characteristics. In fact, the only result likely is to outline key differences between people and help others see this disagreement making everyone involved look bad. Harsh putdowns only serve to disassociate a person from others.

Dr. Terrion of the University of Ottawa who followed a group of police officers through training found that the development of putdowns followed a rough pattern of progression from putting down oneself, to putdowns of shared identities or groups, to putdowns of external groups and finally to putdowns of each other within a group. She also found that officers tended to putdown members of the group that had higher status, and members tended to poke the most fun at others whom they liked most and that using putdowns when members were absent was seen as backstabbing so was frowned upon. One of the cardinal rules of putdown humour, is to only poke fun at people who are present. The study also showed that members that are willing to laugh at themselves tended to be taken into the group more readily. Laughing at oneself shows others that we see ourselves as equals and shows that we can be trusted. Another general putdown rule follows that members that don’t take well to putdowns shouldn’t be targets because it tends to elicit an uncomfortable feeling within the rest of the group.

Putdown humour, when it is framed properly, indicates belongingness and also a desire by others to welcome someone in given that all the rules are properly followed. Conversely, a lack of inclusion into humour, even putdowns, can alienate us just as much as particularly negative humour. The next time someone pokes fun, roll with it and either laugh heartily or joke back, as humour can help break down boundaries and create inclusiveness.

The Room Encompassing Glance

There's no mystery in these eyes.

There’s no mystery in these eyes.

The room encompassing glance is a sexual signal performed by women interested in being pursued. More specifically, it is done by women who are “checking out” potential suitors and it is done totally unconsciously as is most all other body language. It is very subtle and also very specific. The glance occurs by first casting her eyes around the room for five to ten seconds. If she spots someone she is interested in, she will take a second look. This second glance is not directed at the entire room, but rather in the direction of a specific man. It will be short, and she will rotate her head twenty-five to forty degrees to the side then look away, usually downward, within about three seconds. Women usually continue this behavior until they meet their target’s eyes. At this point, the target and the woman will hold a mutual gaze lasting about three seconds which is normally broken by the woman. It should be noted also that most men are fairly clueless in reading this signal and usually miss it. If women wish to make it more powerful and obvious they should add a slight smile. The light bulb usually goes off with this more overt signal.