He says that’s his best offer. Is it?
She says she agrees. Does she?
He says that’s the last time he’ll do that. Is it?
She says I’ll never speak to him again. Did she?
Here’s how can you spot what people really mean.
The prime directive of the limbic system is to make sure you survive.
It does this by running a program that immediately tells you when you are facing any kind of peril.
It also sends a signal when you face a situation far less dangerous such as something that causes a level of discomfort.
Additionally, the limbic system stores memories from the past so you will intuitively realise the probable outcome of a difficult event you are about to face.
This information is outwardly expressed through your physiology – your body language.
To determine what a person is actually feeling it is necessary to decode some very specific signals.
They’re always present – they just need to be observed, so you need to be watchful.
And you don’t need binoculars!
The brain always attempts to settle you down once an alarm has been wiped out, extinguished.
It wants to get you into a state of equilibrium, homeostasis, a sense of calmness you normally feel when you aren’t stressed.
You can see this happening all the time as the body expresses how a person is feeling.
Most of the information you learn through experience is created by the way the limbic system uses three important automatic responses – fight, flight and freeze to danger.
In the next few parts in this series I will look at the most common body language signals that can easily be observed through the way the body reacts to difficult circumstances.
Here I’d like to discuss the obvious signs that something a bit dramatic is going on in a person’s brain. It’s best to notice this because you may be the cause!
Now, remember, this is not referring to real physical danger, merely the signals that a person reveals to show you they are not open to what you are suggesting.
This could apply in diverse situations such as in a business context, a sales meeting, or when you are speaking, or trying to charm another person.
In this part we’ll begin by looking at how and why the limbic system generates the freeze response.
Now people will often attempt to physically hide in the open when they want to be secretive.
They will reduce their movements by raising their shoulders and lowering their heads.
It is an attempt to become invisible and it is achieved by shutting down.
When the body freezes a person becomes still with the hope they are less noticeable.
Footballers walk off the field after losing a game with their heads down.
Kids will freeze when they are caught red-handed in the biscuit tin.
Sometimes you will see the arms fall down by the sides.
In most cases eye contact is avoided.
When you are with a person simply notice any movement made when you suggest something of relative importance that requires them to make a decision.
That completes the introduction to the fascinating way the body informs those taking notice of what is going on in a person’s brain.
We’ll expand on these elementary signals as we go through the way we openly respond to the freeze, flight and flight response.