9 things you can tell about a man by looking at his body language

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Have you ever found yourself chatting with a guy, only to find yourself second-guessing his intentions? Is he into you? Is he comfortable around you? Or is he just being polite? 

It can be pretty confusing, right? 

Hmm…not if you know how to look at his body language. 

You see, communication is 55% non-verbal, according to researcher Albert Mehrabian.  

So, your man might be saying one thing, but actually meaning another. Here’s what you can tell about a man by looking at his body language: 

1) His level of interest

One of the first things you can gauge from a man’s body language is his level of interest. But perhaps you know this already; I’m fairly sure that most women can tell when a guy is interested

How? Through cues like: 

  • He maintains steady eye contact
  • He leans in towards you
  • He might even be mirroring your actions

In contrast, if he’s looking around the room, checking his phone or leaning away, he may not be that into you or the conversation. 

2) How confident he is

You know how men stride into boardrooms looking all official and in charge? What exactly gives them that commanding presence? 

It’s pretty simple – it begins with posture. Confident men stand up tall, shoulders back, and have a wide stance. They also greet people with a firm handshake, another clue that signifies confidence. 

One of the best examples I can think of is Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Every time he walks the red carpet or does an interview, his confidence is palpable. 

Of course, the broad physique and muscles help in giving him a larger-than-life aura, but it’s also due to the way he stands tall and proud. 

And he often uses open gestures, which brings me to my next point…

3) His level of openness

Body language can also tell you if a guy is open and ready for whatever comes his way. 

Aside from using open hand gestures when he speaks, he might also have his arms and legs uncrossed. He’ll have positive facial expressions and nod along as you speak. 

What about someone who’s not interested and open? Well, he’d show the opposite of those cues I’ve mentioned above. Not only that, he’d also avoid making eye contact. And if he’s really rude, you might even get an eye-roll or two! 

Whichever case it is, you’ll definitely know if you’re talking to a guy who’s ready to hear what you have to say and open up to you as well. 

4) His desire to make a connection

When I first met my husband, I knew right away that he wanted to make a genuine connection with me. How? 

Well, my first inkling was, of course, his steady eye contact and full attention on our first date. 

Then, he started mirroring my movements. I’ve always been pretty much well-versed in body language cues, so that definitely didn’t go unnoticed. 

Pretty soon, he started touching my arm lightly – in a very respectful and appropriate way, nothing hot and heavy, nothing that got my back up. 

Even now that we’re married, he still does these things whenever we spend time together. 

I love how these little gestures alert me to the fact that even after many years of togetherness, he still wants to connect with me at the end of the day! 

So, if you notice these cues in a guy, that should spur you on to be real and find some common ground for connection

That said, pay attention to how you feel when he touches you as well. It should feel comfortable and respectful. Otherwise, it’s okay to step back and make your boundaries known. 

5) How he reacts to personal space

Speaking of boundaries, how does he respond to yours? Does he maintain a comfortable distance? 

If he does, it’s probably safe to say he’s a guy you can trust. Or at least, a guy who’s mindful of your comfort. 

But if he frequently gets too close for comfort, that is a red flag you shouldn’t ignore. It may mean that yes, he’s interested in you, but it may also point to a lack of respect for your personal boundaries

It may even be a glimpse into an overbearing nature, which could mean he’s someone who doesn’t take no for an answer.

Trust your instincts here – if it feels off, it probably is.

6) If they’re trying to assert dominance

Invading someone else’s personal space is just one way that a man might try to assert his dominance. 

He could also convey it through gestures like a firm (sometimes overly firm) handshake, or direct, unbroken eye contact. He’d have a wide stance and use broad gestures that take up a lot of space. 

Basically, it’s about expressing a strong position of authority. 

Now, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. An assertive and dominant man is helpful for situations that call for leadership. 

As long as his behavior simply shows strength and doesn’t encroach on other people’s rights and personal space, healthy dominance is an asset. 

7) How relaxed he is

One of my favorite male figures is Barack Obama. You know why? Because I love how relaxed he is. 

From his very first day as the president of the US, the man was the picture of chill. You could see it in the way his posture was loose yet confident, his fluid movements, and his natural and easy facial expressions.

I mean, looking at him, it’s so hard to imagine just how much stress and pressure he actually had to deal with every single day. 

If you notice those body language cues in your guy, that should tell you he’s feeling relaxed. 

On the other hand, how would he look if he was tense? He’d probably have: 

  • Tense shoulders
  • Clenched fists
  • Rigid movements
  • Fidgeting or self-soothing behaviors like touching his neck or face
  • Infrequent eye contact or darting eyes

And if he’s got extra gestures like crossed arms and legs, he isn’t just uncomfortable. He might be feeling defensive. 

8) If they’re feeling defensive

Now, a caveat: just because a guy’s got his arms and legs crossed doesn’t automatically mean he’s defensive. 

It’s a little tricky because you’ve got to take a few other things in context. 

Let me give you an example. In one of my past relationships, I had a boyfriend who was hard to communicate with

Whenever we had to discuss a thorny issue, he’d clam up and his whole body would tell me that he was feeling defensive. 

For instance, his arms would be crossed as if he was protecting himself or creating a barrier between us. Sometimes, he’d even refuse to look at me or face me when we were talking. 

And of course, he would be frowning or scowling – definitely not a sign of openness. 

So, all these body language cues taken together, it was pretty clear that he wasn’t accepting anything I was saying. 

If you notice these signs, it might be a good idea to switch the topic or tone of the conversation to something less unpleasant.

9) His authenticity

Finally, can body language really tell you if a guy’s being fake or real? 

Absolutely. 

Remember that actions speak louder than words, and that’s especially true when it comes to identifying authenticity.

If a guy is being genuine, his body language will usually line up with what he’s saying. For instance, if he’s expressing happiness or excitement, you might see: 

  • A genuine smile that reaches his eyes and creates small wrinkles 
  • Open stances and gestures
  • Comfortable eye contact
  • Leaning in during the conversation

Now, compare that with someone who says he’s happy, but has a forced smile or an averted gaze. Or inconsistent gestures and excessive fidgeting. 

I mean, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out there’s a disconnect between what he says and how he moves! 

Another caveat, though: body language isn’t a foolproof lie detector. People are complicated. A guy might come across as insincere because he can’t look you in the eye, but what if he’s just struggling with anxiety? 

So again, I’d like to emphasize that it’s always best to consider these cues in context, as part of the larger conversation. 

As I mentioned in the intro, body language makes up just about 55% of communication. The remaining 45% should always be taken into consideration, too. 

The bottom line

This list isn’t meant to be taken as a reason to jump to conclusions and pass judgment on the men in your life.  These are just guidelines that could help you better read between the lines and understand them better. 

Remember, we’ve all got off days, not to mention wild differences in cultural backgrounds, personalities, and emotional states. Like I said, people are complicated! 

So, read between the lines as you will, but also remember to give people some grace. 

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Tina Fey

I'm Tina Fey, the founder of the blog Love Connection. I've extremely passionate about sharing relationship advice. I've studied psychology and have my Masters in marital, family, and relationship counseling. I hope with all my heart to help you improve your relationships, and I hope that even if one thing I write helps you, it means more to me than just about anything else in the world. Check out my blog Love Connection, and if you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter

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