As social creatures roaming on this planet called earth, social cues are very important in our lives since we interact so much with these creatures.
Have you met with mystifying situations where you just had a great time with a colleague or a friend but the very next day, they were just plain cold to you? And suddenly you doubt if this person was the very same person you’ve been together with since yesterday.
So, let’s check the facts together to help you identify what are some of the possible causes behind this hot and cold behaviours of our fellow homo sapiens.
Like territorial creatures, we note how close you are allowed to be in our personal space, and if you breach it, our instinctual aversion alarm will go off, marking these creatures as intruders.
Notice these non-verbal signs when you draw close to someone. For example, if they move away from you a few seconds after you draw closer, or show expressions of discomfort (sometimes even disgust). If they suddenly and unnaturally change their seat with someone else, it means you have been inside their comfort zone for way too long.
However, do not fret as the situation is still salvageable - only if you change and keep a comfortable distance with them. They will appreciate the gesture after seeing your change.
1. Delivery Tone
I cannot stress enough how important this subtle yet significant tool of communication is. For example, how you say “What do you want?” in different tones, can make one feel extremely intimidated or just casual indifference.
We may also encounter situations where we misunderstand people as angry or rude when they speak loudly in conversations. However, it may just their way of speaking, and they most likely did it unintentionally and do not mean any harm.
However, whether it is intentional or not, in social situations, it is always wise to control our volume, and our pitch when we speak so as to not send any wrong social cues.
2. Eye Contact
This is important to not only show your interest in the conversation but also convey respect and confidence.
However, too much eye contact will make seem like you are staring. And in conservative Asian culture, staring is considered rude and may sometimes also make you seem like a creep.
So, one in a while look away naturally, like you are pondering on the conversation or a response but look back when you are speaking to the person.
3. Are They Distracted with Something?
When you are conversing with them, do they look at their phones, or look around you and not keep a healthy amount of eye contact with you? This may mean that they are not engaged in the conversation.
You may be conversing on a topic that they are not interested in, or they may be troubled with something in their lives or just plain busy with their work.
So, let’s not jump into conclusions, and observe what they are distracted with to find out what the problem is. Or you can take the direct approach and ask them if they are troubled with something.
4. Observe Their Postures and Behaviours
If you find that the person’s body or legs are facing away from you while you speak, they are probably not interested in your conversation and would prefer to leave as soon as possible. And vice versa. If the person is interested in your conversation, they will posture their bodies towards you.
Are they crossing their arms in the conversation? This may be a defensive stance that they take especially if you are touching on an uncomfortable topic. So, you may want to steer the conversation topic away to a lighter and more casual conversation or you may want to speak in a softer and more polite tone to soothe the tension.
Do not take to heart if you fail in reading other’s social cues due to your unintentional remarks or behaviours. We learn as we make mistakes, practice makes perfect! And what is most important is your heart and intentions during a conversation, is it out of love or kindness?
Lastly, if you want to spend more time learning these social cues, more exposure with your colleagues or friends would help you to understand one another better.
I have attached several links down below on a Perfume Workshop, where you can take personality quizzes to find out more about yourself and your peers! Plus, you can also bring back bottles of perfumes that serves to help boost your mood when you are down.
Perfume Workshop Team Building links for more information:
Couple & Bridal Showers Perfume Workshop:
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