Clearly not listening
We judge other people by how attentively they appear to be listening to us, according to communications expert Leslie Shore, author of Listen To Succeed. “When we feel we are not being listened to, we feel unwelcome, unappreciated, and devalued, and usually perceive the listener as cold and arrogant,” she says. Visual clues that a listener gives (consciously or unconsciously) that send these negative signals: failing to make eye contact, using closed or defensive body postures, and not nodding periodically. To be perceived as warm and friendly, Shore recommends maintaining eye contact, leaning forward in a discussion, and commenting from time to time to reassure the speaker that you’re paying attention. Here’s what good listeners do during conversations to really tune in.
Avoiding eye contact
Maintaining eye contact when someone is talking will help build trust because it shows genuine interest. Not making eye contact can create feelings of rejection and dismay. “Some people refuse to make eye contact with you if they don’t know you,” says Tina Gilbertson, a psychotherapist in Denver and author of Constructive Wallowing. “It could be due to shyness, but the lack of eye contact conveys arrogance or low self-esteem.” Either way, withholding your direct gaze, you project personality cues of being unfriendly and unapproachable. These are subtle habits you have that make people trust you.