Decoding the Body Language of That Warren-Sanders Standoff and more Debate Body Language

Decoding the Body Language of That Warren-Sanders Standoff and more Debate Body Language


Here is the link to my Politico Article where I analyze the body language of the Democratic Candidates
https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/01/15/decoding-the-body-language-of-that-warren-sanders-standoff-099391

Patti Wood, MA - The Body Language Expert. For more body language insights go to her website at www.PattiWood.net. Check out Patti's website for her new book "SNAP, Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma" at www.snapfirstimpressions.com.
     https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/01/15/decoding-the-body-language-of-that-warren-sanders-standoff-099391

Body Language of the Final Democratic Candidate for Presidents Debate, Warren, Saunders, Biden..

As a body-language expert, I know that we choose our candidates based on their non-verbal behavior. In a study using Harvard undergraduates who viewed soundless, ten-second video clips of unfamiliar candidates, they were able to pick the winning candidate at a rate significantly better than chance. When the sound was turned on and students could hear what the candidates were saying, they were no better than chance at predicting the winner. Certainly, words matter, a Politician’s viewpoint and plans of action matter, but research suggests that the nonverbal behavior has 4.3 times the impact in a message.
In my book SNAP Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma, I share that the four factors that affect our impression are credibility, likeability, attractiveness and power. How did the candidates do?
Let’s start with power. The research on how we vote for our political leaders shows we choose the leaders who present the most powerful alpha characteristics Tall people are automatically given more power. Height and bulk get people more power and research show that people with lower, deeper voices also are more apt to have power. Use of Space who gestures the most and most interestingly anger.  Bernie Sanders won on the alpha characteristic of anger with Warren coming in second followed by AK.  Research studies suggest that we perceive people who get angry as having more competence and leadership capability than people who are warm and nice. in work settings, angry employees are more likely to get promoted and get more money. We follow leaders that are angry.   Sanders showed the most anger, he glared, leaned forward, scowled, and did, chopping and pointing motions. Anger increases the heart rate and blood pressure of the angry person speaking and the listener. An along with Warren showed the most common angry expression is eyebrows pulled down and together, inner corners down toward the nose. He and Warren had a great deal of energy, volume and forcefulness, using dramatic gestures, often weapon like, ala Trump.
And Saunders, Warrens and AK gestures also meet the “honesty baton” test, meaning the gestures just like a conductor of a symphony come just before or just as he says their message. In deception detection this is a sign on honesty and authenticity, He had then most expansive gestures and more frequent gestures of any candidate. Saunders also showed the most alpha space invasion, gesturing out and toward other candidates as he talked with or about them.
Elizabeth Warren came out strong at the beginning of the debate and did not let up throughout. Vocally, she comes down firmly at the end of the sentence while at the same time, her head movement is forward, indicating assertiveness and confidence, and her gestures were in sync with what she was saying.  
Warren had a a magical moment in the debate where true authentic caring was displayed as she discussed child care. She stared with  she talked about the babies and the moms ((Elizabeth help me on the lines in that moment  reference to moms and the babies,)) we see first a different t level of energy from her and then her voice broke and we saw on her face then sadness and her voice broke in profoundly true moment we felt her pain and strong powerful maternal energy.  That crack in her strong delivery is a rare moment when we see the power that a woman candidate and can have and show. We are so caught up in gender differences and oddly this something a male candidate would have had a hard time trying to copy! The authenticity in that moment made her powerful and credibly  
On the same hand, Tom Steyer, didn’t look as confident as he should have. For much of the debate, he didn’t seem to know where to look, finally settling in many cases to looking straight at the camera. My thought watching him was “he’s all alone and doesn’t interact with the others.” Very un-Alpha.
Attractiveness
Attractiveness is a genetic measurement we use to see if somebody is healthy. It has to do with symmetry. Research shows that a person with a symmetrical body and facial symmetry is highly attractive. A lack of symmetry is uncomfortable to watch, it can alert the central nervous system that there is something amiss.
In Pete Buttigieg’s case, his youth, and attractiveness were working for him throughout the debate. He was the only one who was smiling on a regular basis, which also brings him likeability. He uses wide-eyed facial expressions and high energy. The audience saw him as open and accessible. There’s a “calm” in him that we didn’t see in any other candidate on the stage. He uses a smoothness of delivery and movement, a melodic voice that’s pleasing to the ear. The strength of his delivery is different from other candidates, which comes in handy because his plans aren’t as specific as the others.

We look for Likeability in a candidate’s someone who smiles easily, laughs easily, and shows a full authentic emotion as well as a broad range of emotions. We loved it when Saunders was the first to crack a joke and break the tension. And when Warren made a joke a held for the laugh and smiled. PB won the night on likeably he smiled the most of all the candidates and had a calm confident manner and warm, sing-songy cadence strikingly similar to Obama then makes us feel calm and safe. He also won on Attractiveness. Research shows that we feel a person with symmetrical body and facial features is attractive. We view them as healthy balanced and honest.
A lack of symmetry is not only unattractive it can denote a lack of symmetry of thought and feeling that effects credibly. When Klobuchar mouth twists smirk, one shoulder is higher than the other the lack of balance an alert our central nervous system that there is something amiss. Interesting when someone feels one thing in their primitive limbic system, they may show it with one side of their face and body before the logical thinking neocortex and contain it so when we say, “He talks out of the side of his mouth.” we are saying something is not right.
Credibility
Credibility comes down to evolution. We are hard-wired to pick up on credibility. The first impression in the basic survival instinct asks, “Can I trust this person? Can I feel safe in their presence? Your central nervous system alerts you to danger.
Joe Biden uses his deep knowledge to engender credibility in the eyes of voters, but his body language can betray him in that area. He had very low energy out of the gate. He seems to be squinting very often, which can be interpreted as being fearful. He was exerting a lot of effort to look in sync. His resting face tended to be sad, which is an issue when in a debate because there is a lot of resting time.
There was an incident about half-way through the debate where Biden had to self-correct. He had said “poking in our eye” when he meant to say “poking my finger in the eye.” When he self-corrected, his head went down and his eyes closed tightly (self-admonishment, internally going “oh no!”). There was a stutter and a very visible need to come back to center himself again. This is something I’ve seen Trump do, except when he does it, he stops, pauses, and changes the subject. Biden keeps going. It makes him look not sure of himself. There seems to be some pain around it.




Patti Wood, MA - The Body Language Expert. For more body language insights go to her website at www.PattiWood.net. Check out Patti's website for her new book "SNAP, Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma" at www.snapfirstimpressions.com.
     

Elizabeth Warren's Body Language and Handshake Rebuff with Bernie Saunders at Democratic Candidate Debates

 Elizabeth Warren's Body Language and Handshake Rebuff with Bernie Saunders at Democratic Candidate Debates


By Patti Wood
Patti Wood is a body language expert and the author of SNAP: Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language, and Charisma.

There’s one moment from last night everyone is talking about: The tense exchange between Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren after the debate wrapped and the mics were off. As Warren approached Sanders, he held out his hand. She did not accept—beginning a 14-second, soundless dance with her holding and wring her hands and him flat palmed gesturing, finger-pointing and head shaking.

Let’s break this down.

As a body language expert, I have been researching and writing about handshakes for over 30 years. Handshakes at the beginning of competition are a part of gamesmanship, signaling, “Hey were friends but, after we shake hands the game begins and let’s see who wins.” Handshakes at the end of an interaction say symbolically, “Game over. We are friends again, let’s go for drinks.”  

First, we see Warren give Biden is shaking hands with Steyer an  “I am here and powerful notice me” pat on his outer arm (outer arm pats with the hand on the audience size show dominant power.) and then Biden turns slightly and they briefly and Warren walks toward Sanders.

Note how she faces Sanders but stops short and folds her hands in front of her body, preventing him from shaking hands with her or because she is initiating engagement at close distance with all her body windows towards him and only her hands blocking in this way dismissing her. The folded hands, up in front of her chest, and her ever so slightly bowed head show a certain amount of deference to his power, but also very effectively block him from fully engaging in a handshake or touch. (With her standing in this position, a bit far away, body closed, hands clasped together in front of her, [he can’t pat her to show he is more powerful.) She doesn’t look mean or rude, but this is her way of saying, “We played the game and the game is not over. No drinks with you, Bernie!”

He feels her rebuff. You can see him reach out and point downwards towards her several times in admonition and then point back at himself.
He is telling her off and you can see that by his emphatic hand’s flat down movement and his energetic head bob downward that’s he it’s a dismissal of her request or statement. He gets slightly closer and pats his right hand down reaching towards her showing her and us that there is a friendship with the intimacy of engagement, [but she keeps her hands interlocked and held high over her heart. Whatever they are discussing it’s emotional and speaks to their friendship because she feels the need to protect her heart. He keeps it up till she flings her fingers up and out to stay stop. We don’t have a full view of her face but see how she is making eye contact and is fully engaged and finally just gives a quick shake no as Bernie turns away. [Anything to say about her facial expression when she does this? Eyebrows up, head shaking?] But, instead, he points his right hand and jabs at her heart like a dagger, flings his hand's fingers out an down to dismiss her and turns and walks away.

I have been analyzing the before and after handshakes of the debates for decades, and this is a moment I have never seen because we know they have had a long friendship, we know there had been a scuff up earlier in the week about Bernie's belief that a woman could win the race and here was the opportunity for us to see the real relationship after the debate after the GAME and he didn’t go over to her right away to heal their riff and she went with boundaries in place. you be specific about what makes it so unique? Just the fact that there was a standoff? A handshake rebuff and exchange that lasted so long?] It will also be a lasting one impression for us as the very last thing a candidate does before our eyes on the screen has what is called the “recency effect.” It lingers in our memories and has a powerful effect on our impressions of the candidates. He came across as a negative and slightly aggressive and she came across a bit better as she sought the engagement though guarded engagement. Leaving us to think she might have put down her hands if he had been nice. 


We choose our candidates based on their non-verbal behavior. In a study using Harvard undergraduates who viewed a soundless, 10-second video clips of unfamiliar candidates, they were able to pick the winning candidate at a rate significantly better than chance. When the sound was turned on and students could hear what the candidates were saying, they were no better than chance at predicting the winner. Certainly, words matter, a politician’s viewpoint and plans of action matter, but research suggests that the nonverbal behavior has 4.3 times the impact in a message.
In my book SNAP Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma, I share that the four factors that affect our impression—of anyone, including political candidate [—are credibility, likeability, attractiveness, and power. How did the candidates do?

Hand Holding Styles, Different ways of holding hands and what they mean.


Patti Wood body language expert hand-holding styles. Touch process oxytocin and handholding that simultaneously gives someone else that chemical pleasure and extends the pleasure longer than a normal brief touch is quite magical. It’s one of my favorite sets of couple behaviors to interpret because it shows not only the connection and confidence in the connection between the members of the couple but also potentially the power dynamics and passion and tenderness.  I have over the years of analyzing hand holds created names for the hand embraces.

Interlaced Hold –(Fingers of both hand-holders interlaced with each other.) There is so much wonderful mutual contact in this hold it typically shows a matching and mirroring of romantic feelings and affection. It's my personal favorite to see in couples and do with a sweetie!

Firm Grip Hold – This handhold like some others is on a continuum as you can hold partners firmly to show confidence in your feelings and show support through a moment that I see sometimes when celebrity couples are trying to avoid the paparazzi or a couple in going through the grief that shows that gripper is saying, “I have got you and I won’t let go you can depend on me? hand so extreme and over the top in the pressure that  marks or the blood drain that shows the desire of the one partner to control his or her mate that I see sometimes in couples where one is concerned that someone is after their mate.

Holding hands with palms pressing interlocking fingers and palms pressed show a body’s desire to connect. Woods warns there could be some holding back from a person who arches their palms or is awkward with holding hands. It also may be a way of comforting someone who is in pain or healing in a gentle protective manner.

Hand Rest Hold –One embracing partner had their hand out flat or semi-flat and the other gently rest theirs on top. This can be seen in formal situations and Netflix and chill couch sharing sessions to touch in a way that shows you care and want to be connected but is gentle and comfortable to last through the house so binge-watching. 

Double handhold – (with one hand on top and you're other on the bottom) For example, his right and her left and then take your other hand to press down on top of the held hands. This handhold typically is given either formally to show the bond of the couple formally in a wedding ceremony or to show the strength of the bond and or signal of a special moment of the bond say during or after the birth of the child. This handhold is also given in comfort or to show caring strength or the special healing power of a nurse or doctor or priest to the congregant, or rabbi.  

Gallant Handhold -This gentle and formal handhold lifts and leads. The photo below the handhold is not about romantic love but about gallantry. It’s a formal way to show honor respect and potentially help and support a woman walk, move to say in and out of a car safely. I see it given to the Queen by her husband and in the military, it was the way the soldiers that escorted the wives and children into events or the grooms escort guests down the aisle of the church. 

Leading Security Guard Hold. This a variation of the gallant hold, but instead of gentle formal showing or support it’s a power grip hold that’s more passionate and stronger where the partner, holds more of the hand and pulls and leads 



Patti Wood, MA - The Body Language Expert. For more body language insights go to her website at www.PattiWood.net. Check out Patti's website for her new book "SNAP, Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma" at www.snapfirstimpressions.com.
     

Nancy Pelois's Body Language during and after Trump Impeachment Vote, What does Nancy Pelois's

I just did an analysis of Nancy Pelosi's body language including her stern glare after Trump Impeachment Vote for the media. I will post the article when it goes live.  What does Nancy Pelosi's body language say?

 https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/2019/12/9069021/nancy-pelosi-impeachment-announce-body-language-meaning



















https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/12/18/trump-impeachment-top-moments-historical-day/2687768001/
Patti Wood Body Language Expert go to her website at www.PattiWood.net. Check out Patti's website for her new book "SNAP, Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma" at www.snapfirstimpressions.com.