Ever had a chat where you felt like the other person just wasn’t trusting you, even though you were being totally honest?
It could be because of the signals your body language is sending out!
Surprising, right? But don’t worry, I’ve got you covered.
In this article, I’ll dive into the 10 body language gestures that might be making you look untrustworthy.
This is going to be eye-opening, trust me!
1. Crossed arms
Here’s the first one – crossing your arms.
It might seem like a comfortable position or maybe it’s just a bit chilly and you’re trying to keep warm. However, this seemingly harmless gesture can be interpreted as defensive or closed-off.
When our arms are crossed, it can seem like we’re building a physical barrier, blocking others out or protecting ourselves.
This can give off an impression that we’re not open to what others are saying, and that’s definitely not a trust-boosting signal!
Think about it: when you’re having a friendly chat, don’t you feel more connected when the other person’s arms are open and relaxed?
It’s as if they’re inviting you into their space and their conversation.
2. Lack of eye contact
Next on our list is avoiding eye contact.
Now, I’m not saying you need to hold a person’s gaze like a starry-eyed lover in a romance movie, but consistent eye contact is crucial in building trust.
When your eyes are everywhere but the person you’re speaking with, it can give off the impression that you’re either disinterested or, worse, hiding something.
Eye contact shows that you’re engaged in the conversation and that you value what the other person is saying. It conveys confidence, sincerity, and respect.
Of course, there’s a fine line between maintaining good eye contact and staring – we don’t want to make the other person uncomfortable.
The trick is to maintain natural eye contact, just as you would when you’re chatting with a close friend.
Alright, let’s move on to the next one – fidgeting.
This is something I personally struggled with for a long time. Whether it was tapping my foot, clicking a pen, or constantly adjusting my glasses, I was a chronic fidgeter.
Fidgeting can be distracting and gives off an impression of nervousness or impatience. It can make you seem like you’re not comfortable with the conversation or that you’d rather be anywhere else but there.
And let’s face it, it’s hard to trust someone who seems like they can’t sit still!
I realized that my fidgeting was more noticeable than I thought when a friend jokingly mentioned how I could’ve drilled a hole in the floor with all my foot tapping. That was a wake-up call for me.
It wasn’t easy, but with time and practice, I learned to keep myself still during conversations. And you know what? I’ve noticed a definite improvement in my interactions since then.
4. Touching your face
The fourth gesture on our list is touching your face during a conversation. This might seem harmless or even a habit for some, but did you know it can make you look untrustworthy?
According to research, people tend to touch their faces when they’re feeling uncomfortable or anxious. It’s a self-soothing behavior that we often resort to when we’re under stress.
However, in a conversation, it can be interpreted as a sign of nervousness or that you’re hiding something.
So, next time you find your hand drifting towards your face, try to resist the urge.
Keeping your hands away from your face during a conversation can help present you as more confident and trustworthy!
5. Negative nodding
The fifth gesture that can make you look untrustworthy is negative nodding.
You know, when someone is sharing an idea or a story, and you’re there shaking your head as if saying ‘no.’
It’s a small gesture, but it can leave a big impact.
We all want to feel heard and understood. When someone is opening up to us, they’re trusting us with their thoughts and feelings. By shaking our heads negatively, we might be sending a message that we don’t agree or understand, which can break that trust.
Instead of shaking your head ‘no,’ try nodding in agreement or simply maintaining a neutral head position when listening. It’s a small change, but it can make a big difference.
6. Looking at your watch or phone
I remember a time when I was catching up with an old friend. We were having a great time reminiscing and sharing updates about our lives.
But there was one thing that was off – every few minutes, he would glance at his watch.
Initially, I brushed it off, but after a while, it started to feel like he was either bored or had somewhere else to be.
This seemingly small action made me question his interest and sincerity in our conversation. It was a little hurtful, and it definitely made the meet-up less enjoyable for me.
Checking your watch or phone during a conversation can send a message that you’re not fully engaged or interested in what the other person is saying, which can make you seem untrustworthy.
7. Constantly interrupting
We’ve all been guilty of this at some point, and honestly, it’s a tough habit to break. But it’s also one of the quickest ways to come across as untrustworthy.
When you cut someone off mid-sentence, you’re essentially saying, “Hey, what I have to say is way more important than what you’re saying.”
And let’s face it, that’s not a great message to send out.
Interrupting someone can make them feel dismissed and undervalued. It breaks the flow of conversation and builds walls instead of bridges.
So, try to listen more and interrupt less. Let the other person finish their thoughts before jumping in with yours. It shows respect, understanding, and trustworthiness.
8. Standing too close
Here we’re talking about personal space or, more specifically, when you invade it.
Standing too close to someone during a conversation can make you seem untrustworthy. But did you know there’s actually scientific reasoning behind it?
According to research in the field of proxemics – the study of human space – most people feel comfortable with a distance of 1.5 to 4 feet during casual conversations. This is known as “personal space.” When someone invades this space, it can cause discomfort and give off an impression of aggression or dominance.
So, next time you’re in a conversation, be aware of the other person’s comfort zone.
Maintaining a respectful distance not only makes the other person more comfortable but also helps to build trust!
Yep, slouching is something I used to do a lot. Whether sitting or standing, I’d often find myself with drooping shoulders and a bent back.
I didn’t think much of it until someone pointed out how it made me look disinterested and unconfident.
Slouching, in fact, can make you also seem untrustworthy. It gives off an impression of low self-esteem and lack of interest.
On the flip side, maintaining a straight posture shows confidence and engagement, which are key elements in building trust.
10. Overdoing it
Alright, let’s address the last point head-on: overdoing it.
Whether it’s too much smiling, too much nodding, or too much of any gesture – when you overdo it, it can feel fake and insincere.
Trust is built on authenticity, so trying too hard to appear a certain way can actually make you seem less trustworthy.
People can sense when something doesn’t feel genuine.
So, while it’s good to be aware of your body language and work on improving it, it’s equally important to be yourself.
Trustworthiness isn’t about perfection; it’s about authenticity and sincerity.
And there we have it!
Remember, these are just guidelines – not hard and fast rules. We’re all unique, and what works for one person might not work for another.
The key is to be aware of our body language and how it might be perceived by others, while also staying true to ourselves.