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home | Feature Articles | Discover the Secrets to Mirroring th . . .

Discover the Secrets to Mirroring the Other Person
Tonya Reiman
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Becoming More Familiar and Likable in Just Minutes

Mirroring is the art of matching another person's body language without exactly copying it in order to be perceived as a like-minded, more familiar and of course more likable person. As human beings, we like to be around people that are like us. Mirroring another persons gestures, expressions and movements in a very subtle way is a great rapport builder as it allows the person you are speaking with to feel very comfortable around you. It is almost as if they are speaking o themselves.

A Jump in Self-Confidence and Self Esteem

Don't think of this as a dirty little trick. The truth is, you probably have found yourself doing it without even realizing it. it might have been a knee jerk reaction just from hanging out with someone or even as a means to try to fit in. We get a boost in self esteem when we hang out with people that are just like us, because we see ourselves in other people and we think, "Wow, that person is awesome.... they are just like me - I must be awesome too!". Seeing other people that display body language that is the same as you do, makes you feel confident in who you are.

Warning: Do Not Let Them Think You are Mimicking Them

The last thing you want is for the person that you are speaking with to think that you are deliberately mimicking them. Mirroring another person's body language is not about copying them, it's about making your body language similar to theirs in a subtle way. It is more about getting in sync or in tune with how they act or behave. What are their facial expressions? Do they make big gestures? Do they speak real fast or real slow?

How Do you Put it all Together?

It's really a lot easier than it might sound. If the person you are speaking with makes a lot of big gestures with their hands, then you would want to make your gestures bigger. Remember, that does not mean that you should copy their gestures, just act similarly. The same is true for smaller gestures. If they sit with their legs crossed, so can you. If they fold their arms across their chest, you can do the same. Here is a secret though. If they fold their arms and then you instantly do it too, it will look like direct copying. Give it some time, maybe a few minutes then fold your arms. If they are sitting across from you and lean in putting their elbows on the table, you can do that too, but maybe you wait a minute or so and then only put one elbow on the table as you lean in. The key here is that you are trying to build rapport which will not happen if you are trying to directly copy their movements but will definitely happen and quick, when you master the art of mirroring.

If you have questions or comments about this article, please post them in the discussion forum.

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