Tiger McKee

Shootrite Firearms Academy

Body Language

The majority of our communication with others is through non-verbal body actions. It’s important to pay attention to this because body language gives you an indication of what a possible threat is thinking, before they act. Physical actions can reveal when someone’s mental attitude shifts. The more you know about what someone is thinking, the better you can assess their future intentions.

To decode this nonverbal language I highly recommend reading “What Every Body Is Saying,” by agent Joe Navarro, an agent with 25 years of experience working for the F.B.I. This book is full of information on identifying the simple “tells” that almost everyone displays. “One of the best reasons for studying nonverbal behaviors,” Navarro states, “is that they can sometimes warn you when a person intends to harm you physically, giving you time to avoid a potential conflict.” Victory without being involved in a physical fight is the most efficient way to win a confrontation, but it is only achieved if you have prior warning and act in advance of the actual attack.

We can lie with words, but our body’s actions will reveal the true thoughts going on in our mind. The part of the mind that controls your body is the emotional limbic portion of the mind, and according to Navarro “reacts to the world around us reflexively and instantaneously, in real time, and without thought.” This part of the mind “gives off a true response of to information coming in from the environment,” and “is uniquely responsible for our survival.” This is what makes it a true indicator of what someone is thinking, often without someone even realizing what is occurring.

This means you can tell what someone is thinking, and it also allows you to send the message or image you want others to see and “hear.” Ideally this tells possible threats that we won’t be any easy victim, or if the situation does degrade, projects an aggressive willingness to fight back, and that you are prepared to defend yourself from attack. Predators are good at reading body language, it’s a tool they must have for survival, and the reason it’s so important not to look like a victim.

Another important thing to think about when considering nonverbal communication is that while there are a lot of gestures that are universal, some differ according to specific cultures. While throwing up your arms can be a sign that you are happy to see a friend, in gang cultures it signifies that you are ready to take on anyone and is a sign of aggression.

Just like the words we speak, our nonverbal communication is important. This is true when talking to a family member, a business associate, or a potential threat. Get the book, “What Every Body Is Saying,” read it and study, and you’ll be amazed and how it will improve your daily life. And it just may be something that will save lives. Remember that shooting may be a part of fighting, but it is a small part of the big picture. Prepare in any way possible.


October 26, 2010 - Posted by | Defensive Mindset

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