We use body language to send messages to those around us. Body language can tell others when we are happy, sad, angry, disgusted, silly, flirtatious and more. However, body language can sometimes send the wrong message. When meeting new people it is important to present the right messages with your body language. This requires you to know your body language with some degree of accuracy. Let us look at some common body language mistakes.

Misreading body language is a very common mistake and most of us do it at one time or another. Take for example, the young man leaning against the convenience store wall, leg bent back at the knee, and foot planted against the wall. He’s wearing a large thick coat and looks out of place, like he doesn’t belong there. As you drive by you interpret his body language to mean he’s a hoodlum of some sort, unemployed and just wasting time hanging out. But you don’t consider that he is waiting for a ride to go to work. You have just misread the body language of this young man and interpreted his behavior inaccurately. Now let us look at your body language and how people might misread you.

As we have all heard the eyes are the windows to the soul and eye contact when not used while listening or talking can send the wrong message about you. Most people perceive a lack of eye contact as a form of disinterest and, even though you are interested in the other person, if you don’t maintain eye contact, that person who is talking can misinterpret you and may bring the meeting and conversation to an end. Another common body language mistake is crossing the arms or placing something in front of you, such as a book, chair, or other object. For some people the crossing the arms or placing something in front of you sends the message that you are unapproachable because you have placed a barrier in front of yourself.

Some men do cross their arms when talking to another, doing this without really knowing they are. We have all seen that self-confident man do this as he listens or talks to us or to another. His conversation and attitude are pleasant, but those crossed arms. What are they saying?

Silliness and immaturity is another form of body language, but has its time and place. Having fun and hanging out with good, well established friends at the park may be an acceptable time and place to let it all hang out. But if you are at a social function and trying to meet new people this certainly would not be the time and place for this kind of body language. When meeting new people it can be advantageous to show your humorous side, but to become goofy probably won’t attract new people to you. In fact, you might get glances of disgust from those around you.

Improper posturing is a common body language mistake. Slouching, and for women, uncrossed legs, can present you as sloppy, lazy and just plain unaware. At home or hanging out with good friends you can probably sit any way you want and not be misinterpreted. But out in public places where you are trying to make a good impression and meet new people you want to stand confidently erect or sit with your legs crossed. This can send the message of self-control and pride.

Not smiling at new acquaintances is a sure way to put people off. It is a guaranteed way to cause people to avoid you, even though you may not truly mean anything behind it. If you do not smile, even a little, people will perceive you as unapproachable. So smile and win some friends! Now you know the common body language mistakes to avoid, you have plenty to smile about!

Author's Bio: 

Peter Murphy is a peak performance expert. He recently produced a very popular free report: 10 Simple Steps to Developing Communication Confidence. This report reveals the secret strategies all high achievers use to communicate with charm and impact. Apply now because it is available for a limited time only at: http://www.howtotalkwithconfidence.com/blog