How To Master Body Language To Maximize Your Covert Persuasion With Seemingly Psychic Abilities
Several people have emailed me asking to write more about creating rapport. So today I’ll delve a little bit deeper into exactly how to create rapport, and exactly what to do with it. Many people have a misconception about rapport. The word seems to be thrown around in certain circles, mostly sales and seduction.
You can usually tell by the way it’s being used that most people aren’t really sure exactly what it is, how to get it, and how to test to make sure you have it. Another cool thing, (at least for guys) is that once you learn how to see it in other people, you can pretty much read a room fairly quickly, just by scanning everybody’s body language. You can tell who is into whom, who is fighting, who is wishing whom would leave them alone, etc. Most women, of course, are naturals at this. With practice, men can get just as good.
Let’s first talk about what rapport is. Rapport is a deep, usually unconscious feeling that you feel connected to somebody. You feel safe and comfortable. You don’t have your defenses up. For example, if you went to a Mets game, and you were the only one in the stands with a Yankees jacket on. You would likely feel very left out. But if while waiting in the hot dog line, you saw another person wearing a Yankee’s jacket, you would suddenly feel connected to them. You share something with them that you don’t share with all the other people around. And this would be regardless if they were a different gender, age bracket or ethnicity.
Another example. Lets say you are on a flight from Chicago to Nigeria. And you are sitting on a plane full of Nigerians. You start talking to the person next to you, and after a few minutes of conversation you realize that not only does she collect stamps, but also she collects stamps that were produced by previous Soviet Bloc countries (if they indeed exist.) You both know all the ins and outs of that particular niche hobby, and you have a long and wonderful conversation regarding methods and your respective collections, etc.
Both of the examples above are deep and powerful rapport. If either of people asked to borrow five dollars to buy a drink, you’d be much more willing if they were a total stranger you only exchanged a couple words with. There is one problem with both of the above. One, it was completely random, and happened by chance. Two, it is purely contextual. Meaning that so long as you are talking about stamps, or the Yankees, you’re allright. As soon as you deviate from those two topics, you’ll likely lose rapport rather quickly.
That is how most sales people, and most people trying to create “rapport” with would be boyfriends/girfriends go about doing it. They start a conversation, and hope to find similar interests, backgrounds, hobbies, etc. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. This is what people usually mean when they say they are “trying to build rapport.” They are talking to the person and hopefully creating that feeling of trust and connection.
But there is a much more easier way. A much more powerful way, that cuts through any surface small talk filled conversation you might be having. And because it is not dependent on the conversation, you can still create strong rapport even if you are talking about something you both vehemently disagree on.
How do you do this? You simply match everything you can about the other person. No, I don’t mean go out and buy an outfit just like theirs. That would take too long, and they might suspect you are up to something.
You match their body language, and other non-verbal behavior, and everything you can about their speech. If they speak slowly, you speak slowly. If they smile when they speak, you smile when you speak. If they cross their legs, you cross your legs.
Many people are afraid they are going to get caught doing this. But this hardly ever happens. If they scratch their nose, and you stare at their nose intently, and then stare at your hand, and then bring it slowly to your nose, they’ll know something is up. Usually, however, they will have no idea. They’ll only know that they feel a strange connection to you.
Try this with a friend. Sit facing each other. Try to be as open as possible (e.g. no crossed legs or arms). And match each other’s body language as much as possible. Then talk about something you disagree on. Focus on keeping the match between your body language.
Then switch. Mismatch body language as much as possible. Then talk about something you both agree on.
What you’ll discover is that when talking about something you disagree on, your matching language has more of an effect than the subject you’re talking about. And likewise when you are purposely mismatching. Even though you are talking about something you both like or agree with, you’ll have this funny feeling that something is amiss.
So how do you test to make sure you really have strong rapport? Simple. After you’ve spent five or ten minutes on normal, everyday conversation, and you’ve slowly matched their body language, start to lead a little bit. This means that you move first, and see if they follow. Like lean back in your chair, or cross and uncross your legs, any small movement. Most often they will follow, without even knowing.
Once you get to this stage, you can use a number of any other persuasive techniques to get their agreement. If you are talking to a girl in a bar, you can ask for her phone number. If you were a salesperson with a client, now would be a good time to suggest moving to the next stage in the sales process.
Knowing this gives you great insight whenever you see a room full of people. Next time you are at Starbucks or a similar public place where people are sitting around in groups, take a look around. Who is in rapport with whom? Who is out of rapport with whom?
If you want to use this to help meet somebody, here’s a neat trick. Get close to them, wherever you are. Party, bar, friends house, Starbucks, wherever. And just get into rapport with them before you go and introduce yourself.
People have much more powerful peripheral vision and brain computational capacity than most of us realize. At all times, people are scanning the area around us and checking every single person to determine if they are friend or foe. We may be advanced, but we still carry baggage from our evolutionary days.
If you are nervous, and scared, and you go and approach somebody, they will know it before you even open your mouth. However, if you take the time to develop rapport with them before you talk to them, they will feel this as well. Their guard will be down, and they’ll be more likely to engage in friendly conversation without getting nervous or anxious about being approached by a complete stranger.
Despite how powerful the above methods are, this is just scratching the surface o how to develop powerful, unconscious rapport with people. Try these, and see how they work out. Have fun.