Body Language Decoded
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Body Language Decoded takes us in to the mysterious world of non-verbal communication, what do we say without realising and how can we read the signals others give us involuntarily? We look deep in to the science of Body Language as well as practical applications in law enforcement, romance, commerce, national security and more.
As human beings, our bodies communicate our inner emotions and feelings in ways that can often be easily seen by others, but at other times are barely visible. On every continent and in every ethnicity, expressions of emotions such as happiness, surprise, anger and fear are universally recognised. These expressions are hard-wired into our facial muscles for reasons that have everything to do with human evolution and survival of the species. To the trained observer, the way people move can be more revealing than the things people say.
Forensic Psychologist Dr. Stephen Porter describes how his team helped solve a murder mystery by accurately reading the body language of a key witness, and correctly concluding that she was not being truthful in a heart-rending television news appearance. In Amsterdam, we are introduced to a company that is engaged in cutting-edge research and development that is enabling computers to recognize the gender, ethnicity and facial expressions of human beings. And from Harvard University, social psychologist Amy Cuddy explains how it’s not just that our bodies display outwardly what we are feeling inside. In fact, the reverse is also true: we can actually influence the way we feel by changing the way we move.
We all use our intuition when trying to understand another person’s intentions or needs. We watch the way they walk, and how they stand. We look for their eye-contact, and whether they appear comfortable or anxious. But when intuition is augmented by scientifically based observational techniques, the picture becomes much clearer. These techniques are increasingly being used in the worlds of law-enforcement, surveillance and security, as well as politics and commerce. Understanding the ‘non-verbals’ of the people we encounter gives us an edge that can mean the difference between a sale or no-sale, between an election victory or defeat, between safety and danger, and even between a successful or doomed relationship.