Mirroring is one of the quickest and most efficient ways to build rapport with other people. It can be done consciously to gain an advantage, and if done properly will go without notice. It is effective to create liking, acceptance and formulate bonds. Mirroring can help find common ground during negotiations by creating cooperation and empathy. Unconscious mimicry of postures, mannerisms, facial expressions, and other behaviours occur between people of like minds. This is called “the chameleon affect.”
In various studies, researchers have shown that even purposeful mirroring has positive effects, creates and reveals liking in others, and helps gain approval. Proper mirroring works best by subtly picking up on unconscious gestures such as foot shaking, body scratching, face or hair touching or changes in posture. Mirroring that includes more dramatic gestures like leaning in, crossing legs, or folding arms, must always be done undetected lest it cause irreversible damage or negative thoughts.