Imagine having dinner with a queen and a king. How would they behave? They would sit still, avoid any unnecessary moves, and be fully present. This is how they would show their power through their bodies. All elements like nodding, verbal reassuring, or extensive movements are signs of being less powerful than the other person.
Step 1: Determine your bad habits.
Get a camera, and record yourself during a meeting.
Fast forward 10 minutes (at this point you have likely forgotten about the camera), and watch the video without the sound.
This will allow you to fully focus on assessing your body language. Compare it with other people at the meeting.
Now, turn on the sound and assess your voice control. Compare it with other people in the room.
Step 2: Look closely at these three major issues that reduce your poise.
Reduce excessive and rapid nodding.
Nodding once to express agreement or for emphasis is fine. Avoid nodding more than once.
Avoid excessive verbal reassurance.
Avoid sounds like “uh-huh,” or a half-sentence, such as, “Oh, I agree.”
Reduce your restlessness and fidgeting.
For example, taping your pencil or rearranging items on the table. When you engage in these habits, you are not physically present and thus you’re not very charismatic.
Step 3: Practice stillness and silence.
When you catch yourself nodding or verbally reassuring, replace it with stillness and silence.
Become more comfortable with silence.
Insert pauses between your sentences or even in the middle of them.
Ask a friend to observe you and tell you when you are nodding or verbally reassuring.
You can reward the friend with $1 every time you nod or verbally reassure. This will make the exercise much more effective.