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Insecure Body Language: Standing with Confidence

You can tell a lot about a person when you notice his or her body posture, the way people hold themselves gives off important information. For instance a lot of people feeling down, will give that information by way of their shoulders sagging and head down, but also in the way they have very little eye contact. They say to the world that they are not interested in their environment nor the people in it. Your body posture often reflects how well you feel.

The angle of a body in relation to others gives an indication of the person’s attitude and feelings. You are more likely to angle toward people you find attractive, friendly and interesting and angle yourself away from those you don’t. Angles includes leaning in or away from people, as you tilt from the pelvis and lean sideways to someone to share a bit of conversation. For example, think of your angle at the movies because of the seating or at a concert when you stand shoulder to shoulder and are packed in like sardines. In these situations you tend to lean over towards the other person, making a sort of half circle to remain close and show interest despite the surroundings.

A body posture can be closed or open. Someone who does not feel too comfortable when they are with someone else will often assume a closed position. He or she will possibly have crossed arms or legs or will hold an object such as a bag in front. The bag as well as the crossed arms and legs provide a bit of a barrier and protection for feeling vulnerable. Trust has a lot to do with it. It is natural with someone you do not know to have a bit of a closed body position, until you have established some level of trust and comfort that goes with that.

There are all sorts of levels of trust that get established by your body language, as well as what you say. Turning your body to someone when they are talking to you indicates that you are interested in hearing what they have to say. It is an act of friendliness and respect and often rewards itself when you get it back from the other person. A small effort in this way can make the difference between being accepted by others or not.

Get your posture right and you’ll automatically start feeling confident. Next time when you notice that you’re feeling a little down, take a look at how you are standing or sitting. Chances are you’ll be slightly slouched with your shoulders drooping down and inward. This collapses the chest and inhibits good breathing, which in turn can help make you feel nervous or uncomfortable. A person with good posture is seen as confident and able, while those with poor posture are assumed to have a low self esteem, motivation and poor confidence. As surely as the body follows the mind, so you can turn the table and use your body to lead your mind. Stand tall and you’ll feel better. Try walking upright and looking around next time when you are feeling a bit low and you will notice that such a simple thing already influences your mood positively.

Confident man photo available from Shutterstock

Insecure Body Language: Standing with Confidence

Aaron Karmin

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APA Reference
Karmin, A. (2015). Insecure Body Language: Standing with Confidence. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 3, 2020, from


Last updated: 26 Aug 2015
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