If you sit with your legs crossed, ankle over knee, you’re confident and dominate, says Driver. Known as “figure four” in body language circles, Driver says when you sit in this position you’re opening up your “power zone,” or the nether region. “We have three areas on our body where we open up when we are stress-free and relaxed: the neck dimple, belly button, and ‘naughty bits,’” she says. It’s a predominantly male movement but Driver says women are beginning to sit like this more and more.
Crossing your legs at the ankles while seated is known as the “ankle lock” and can mean you’re holding back, uncertain, or fearful, making it common in interview situations.
And ladies, if you want to appeal to a man, cross your legs at the knees. According to the Peases, men voted this their favorite position for seated women.
Reaching for a handshake
The custom of shaking someone’s hand goes as far back as the Ancient Romans. At first, people would hold onto each other’s forearms, and now we reach for just the palm of someone’s hand. But there are important thoughts to consider before going in for the grab. Handshakes are a sign of trust and welcome, according to the Peases, so reaching first means that you believe you’re welcomed by the other person and they are happy to meet you. Imitating a handshake to someone who might not be so welcomed to meet you could result in negative feelings towards you. Here are eight ways to build trust with someone with the best body language techniques.