Can You Ever Hide Body Language?

The Journey to Consciousness Program begins November 25 – 27th, 2016. http://www.thearcinstitute.com/programs/journey-to-consciousness/ for details.

shutterstock_70106137

Hi Pietro, I just had a question regarding body language.

You mentioned the body holds no secrets. Just curious, would it be possible for people who have really studied body language to be able to “hide” how they are feeling from others with their own body language? Bonnie.

Pietro

Thank you for your question, Bonnie.

Yes, it can be possible to hide some or most body language once you are conscious of it.

It is also possible to change body language to enhance another side of a personality or character.

A body language indicator exists for every behaviour and characterstic we currently indulge in and have indulged in.  We may succeed in hiding a behaviourial trait for a time, but the hidden behaviour will be revealed to anyone who knows how to observe body language.

images[10]

In my work as a therapist I have noticed for some time that rageaholics – or people addicted to outbursts of rage – have two personalities: an outside personality and a hidden personality.

The rageaholic’s outside personality is often charming, pleasing, and helpful. However, in the family home this ‘charming’ person may be intolerant, bullying, and even abusive. In the home this same person may walk with humped shoulders, clenched fists, and a reddened face.

You do not see his form of body language outside of the home. In any social situation, he has a straight back, his arms and hands move freely, and his face shows no redness. This person does not set out to change his body language – he may not even be aware of it – but he does make the effort to enhance his social nature, and this in turn is reflected in his social body language.

If this same person, takes ownership of his rage issue, sees a therapist, and over the course of time, eliminates his capacity for rage, we may then see a more congruent body language, that is, his social body language is now reflected in his home.

However, because rage is part of his history, he will always carry a trait of that history within his body language.

If after a session at the gym he returns home with a red face, his family may be reminded of his past rage episodes and become highly anxious. His friends who may be present at the time, having no awareness of his history, may instead fuss over him, urging him to relax and offering him a cold drink.

Most literature on body language seeks to provide interpretations for body language. The Journey to Consciousness Program (November 25 to 27th, 2016 in Nanaimo, BC), teaches that a change in body language is reflective of a change in internal experience and also, that the observer may influence the outcome of body language.

imagesDR13068J

If I feel calm, then suddenly I realize that the man sitting before me interviewing me for a job reminds me of a neighbour who scared me when I was a kid, even though I am intent on showing my best face and I will hide whatever weaknesses I know I have because I want this job, the insecurity I feel will show up as a change in my body language.

In some way, my body language which represented a state of calmness will now incorporate my insecurity. It has to, because insecurity is now part of my current experience.

Now if the interviewer has noted my overall body language when I entered his office, that is he notes my demeanour, gait, my facial expressions, physical positioning, tone of voice and rhythm of speaking, he may notice that by the time I sit down in the chair, while my physical demeanour remains intact, the pitch of my voice is higher than when I introduced myself, and I am now speaking at a more rapid rate. He might also see that my foot is moving, whereas had he looked through the peep hole in the door of the waiting room, he may have seen that my foot was not moving.

An internal change in experience will always result in a change in body language.

Interpreting body language is unreliable. Just as each one of us speaks with an accent and dialect which has been influenced by our culture and upbringing, body language is likewise influenced by upbringing and culture and will contain its own accent and dialect.

In The Journey to Consciousness Program you will learn how to expand your listening capacity enabling you to compare the body language someone presents on first contact to the subsequent changes that inevitably will take place in presented body language as you continue to spend time with that person.

In this way, you learn to observe, cater to and respond to an individual’s personal presented body language.

People show up differently from one relationship to the next. Consequently, if I feel more relaxed around you I will present one set of body language indicators when I am with you, compared to an entirely different set to the person I was with previous to you, with whom I felt less relaxed.

shutterstock_64138858

The Journey to Consciousness Program teaches how to both observe presented body language then formulate questions to access the message and meaning behind the presented body language.

This is an essential skill, whether you are a therapist, someone who conducts interviews, a teacher with students, a cashier or hairdresser regularly attending to the general public, someone who wants to have intimate conversation with a loved one, a parent wanting to understand her or his children on a deeper level, or someone who simply wants to experience meaningful conversations.

Join us on The Journey to Consciousness on November 25 – 27, 2016, and become conscious of a hidden language we all engage in.

http://www.thearcinstitute.com/programs/journey-to-consciousness/ for details.

One thought on “Can You Ever Hide Body Language?

  1. Hello! Thank you to Bonnie for this last question. During sessions with Pietro I have been curious about the possibilities of hiding “body language.” Since my intent is personal growth my intent is also not to cover up body language but to allow the therapist to help me on this journey. Nonetheless, I am curious about the role that shame plays in all of this. Pietro’s answer to Bonnie’s question has really helped me clue into the “foundation” of the therapeutic session. It seems the tuning in to body speak is very about developing the skill to notice shift in the clients’ body language. Also…. I wonder? If I am re-experiencing shame during a bodyspeak therapuetic session then perhaps shame/trauma ultimatly is trumping whatever strategies I previously decided to use to cover up my bodyspeak.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *