I first saw Mark Bowden on YouTube. When I look for people to work with my students, I look for the absolute best . When I saw Mr. Bowden's TEDx Talk in Toronto about the importance of body language, I knew I had to reach out to him. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rk_SMBIW1mg If you haven't seen this yet, check out what he has to say. It is mind blowing!
Now Mark's whole idea about why we react the way we do when we see the body language of others is extremely interesting. It has to do with evolutionary psychology, behavioral psychology and embodied cognition. In 2013, Mr. Bowden delivered his speech "The Importance of Being Inauthentic" to The Royal Conservatory of Music. (This is the same speech in the TEDx YouTube Video above).
In this speech, he gives a very clear description of the evolution of our movements and what they mean to us today. Most importantly, how we can use these movements to our advantage. When I think about it, it makes perfect sense. I do know when I am watching a public speaker that I am either energized or put to sleep by how exciting or boring I believe something to be and I do believe that the delivery of their words can be even more important than the words themselves. Maybe it is not the story, but how the story is told.
I also saw Mark on The Behavior Panel (another YouTube channel worth watching). On this channel, he and 3 other body language experts go over videos of interviews and discuss the body language of the interviewee and sometimes even the interviewer. As I was watching these videos, I started to become more conscious of my own body language and out of the blue, I started to see that I also, "look up to the right when I am thinking or creating" or "look down and to the left when I am trying to recall something from memory". I had to stop thinking about it because it was debilitating and I couldn't get a word out edgewise due to the distraction. This topic truly is fascinating! If you decide to check out these videos on YouTube, be careful of the rabbit hole. There are so many body language people out there but Mark is definitely one of my favorites.
So, if we start to look at how body language can affect moments in our lives, I would ask you to imagine that you are getting ready for college and you are a young 18 or 19 year old. Perhaps you have no idea that how you are sitting, how you are holding your hands or how you are holding your head, could make people like you, just a little bit more. Maybe just enough to let you into this university that you so desperately want to attend. (I mean, at this point, every little bit counts.) This is why, I asked him to work with my students. I just want to give them an EDGE that could help them Get In to that university, conservatory or college. Or, what if you are on stage for a performance and you truly understand that how you step out in front of your audience, make eye contact and where your hands are as you speak to that audience would make them like you just a little bit more. You can make this happen in mere seconds. Would it be worth it for you to take the time to understand this idea of evolutionary psychology and put it to practice?
Mr. Bowden also works with a number of G7 leaders, Fortune 500 CEOs and is an author. He has written Truth and Lies, What People Are Really Thinking with Tracey Thompson, Winning Body Language and Winning Body Language for Sales Professionals. These books show how to control the conversation, command attention and convey the right message without saying a word.
Let me know what you think! I would love to hear from you. Have a great week everyone :)