How Can The Way A Person Laughs Give Insight Into Their Personality and Other Insights on Laughing

1)      How can the way a person laughs give insight into their personality? Though we may use are thinking brain to analyze something said to see if it’s funny the actual laughter are not fully controlled response, they are. Laughter vocalizations and body movements are primal physical reactions rather than logical rational word language. Though we do have different laughs and laughter we modify depending on how we feel and how others are laughing, our laughter itself is primal and not consciously controlled, or not controlled initially. Laughter is primarily a “Play” signal to bond us together socially.

2)     Does reading body language help give us insight as well? Nonverbal communication involves using all the senses to read someone. So we hear the many nuances of the laugh and see how the persons face and body move when they laugh to completely read them. For example if someone laughs and their head goes back and their mouth opens wide and their chest and torso move with the laughter we read that they are fully engaged in big full laugh.

3)     Is laughing (when it is sincere) something we do automatically, without putting a lot of thought into it? Most of the time our laughter is spontaneous and unconscious it is a primal “play” signal. It’s very difficult to control real laughter consciously. However we do read social cues to match others laughter and bond through the language of laughter in social situations with this spontaneous play laughter. There is also a second kind of laughter researchers call volitional laughter (fake laughter) that we may use under stress we use along with to smooth out social situations say when the boss tells an off color joke we don’t think is funny or to send negative messages in passive aggressive, “I was just joking” way. Volitional laughter is designed to show superior power, and or to “laugh at” in a way to cast someone out of the group.

4)     Do we always laugh the same way, or are there different ways we laugh at different times/in different situations perhaps? According to research we laugh 30 times more frequently in social situations rather than in solitary situations we have two major kinds of laughter, spontaneous and volitional laughter. We laugh when things are funny, but we also laugh under stress and even during or after trauma not to ignore the stress but to prepare ourselves to endure it!

5)     What does it say about you if...
A)    You clap your hands when laughing? You want to show how playful you are and want others to join the play.
B)    You usually cover your mouth? You are not sure you are laughing approximately
C)    You throw your head back? Free spontaneous laughter
D)    You put your hand on heart? Often to show your laughter is heartfelt, and if higher at times to try to contain overwhelming laughter as in your chest hurts from laughing.
E)    You crinkle your nose? To show playfulness and that you can’t believe how sweet the situation is, funny because we usually crinkle the nose in extreme pleasure, but in this case we are showing extreme displeasure.
F)     Is there another way of laughing we left out that you think is important to mention?

6)     Is there anything else you think is important to add when it comes to discussing how the way you laugh can reveal your personality? I have quite a few more things here. But the major thing is I have developed a survey to test how your laugh reveals your DISC personality type. I put a few of the questions at the end of this document with the answer key in the survey (do you wouldn’t have the letters D I S or C in the actual survey so if you wanted to you could put the survey and the key in the article. Let me know.

1.      Women laugh much more than men in social situations (just like smiling)

      1,200 case studies, researchers found that while both sexes laugh a lot, females laugh more. In cross-gender conversations, females laughed 126% more than their male counterparts, meaning that women tend to do the most laughing while males tend to do the most laugh-getting

2.  It’s complex and involves many parts of the brain

  •        Laugh The left side of the cortex (the layer of cells that covers the entire                surface of the forebrain) analyzed the words and structure of the joke.
  •        The brain's large frontal lobe, which is involved in social emotional                         responses, became very active.
  •        The right hemisphere of the cortex carried out the intellectual analysis                   required to "get" the joke.
  •        Brainwave activity then spread to the sensory processing area of the                      occipital  lobe (the area on the back of the head that contains the cells that            process visual signals).
  •        Stimulation of the motor sections

3.   It’s beneficial

  •  Laughter shuts down the release of stress hormones like cortisol. It also triggers the      production of feel-good neurochemicals like dopamine, which have all kinds of                calming, anti-anxiety benefits.” Laughter is good for your body too–you use your            core muscles when you laugh and you burn calories. increases blood pressure
  •  Increases heart rate (may be good exercise for the heart and may overtax it         changes breathing
  •  Reduces levels of certain neurochemicals (catecholamines, hormones).
  •  Provides a boost to the immune system.

      4. The first laughter appears at 3 and half to 4 months.

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

Trump and Clinton Laughter and the Candidates and Body Language Expert

Trump does laugh, but it’s a more of a quick heh heh. You don’t see him in public with his head back laughing.  His laugh would be quick.  He is a driver on the DISC personality inventory with some Influencer.  I have done several research studies on DISC and various body language movements including laughter.
Clinton is a C controller with Driver. C's typically laugh more internally rather than externally. And C's only luagh when they really mean it so it's been hard for her to fake her smile for the public, 

High D Driver personality motivated by: Control, Dominance and Challenges.  Their personality moves outward and direct through their body language. They are expressive with their non-verbals. Their fists fly through the air and their language can be colorful. If they overuse their tendencies, they may move to quickly or interrupt and not let your finish your sentences. Confident and very direct

High I Personality – Influence – DiSC Behavioral Styles are motivated by: Popularity, Status and Approval.  Their personality spirals out and upward in it’s expression. They laugh easily and generally elicit smiles and laughter you. Their enthusiasm can be contagious. If they overuse their tendencies, they can be perceived as insincere or flippant. Infectious Laughter Entertains Others

High S Personality – Steadiness – DiSC Behavioral Styles are motivated by: Traditions, Status Quo and Stability.  Their personality is inward and reserved, constant and subtle. Their slow movement and gentle energy is inviting.  If they overuse their tendencies, they can be indecisive and slow to action. Maintains Low Profile

High C Personality – Conscientious – DiSC Behavioral Styles are motivated by: Order, Precision and Proper Ways.  Their personalities have have the lowest level of natural movement. They appear formal and structured. If they overuse their tendencies, they can appear rigid and are often perceived as critical and serious. People often tell them to “Lighten Up!” Controlled Perfectioni

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

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump's Body Language in Second Debate, Apology, Smiles and Lion Behavior

Check out the link below:

By Kevin Uhrmacher and Lazaheir lecterns, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were able to roam the stage at Sunday night’s presidential debate. And while the spoken insults and accusations will provide much fodder for political analysts in the days ahead, we invited two body language experts to dissect the candidates’ nonverbal cues.Here’s a bit about the experts, whose lightly edited thoughts about the debate are below:David Givens, who is the director of the Center for Nonverbal Studies, a nonprofit research center in Spokane, Wash. Givens also contributed to this helpful dissection of Clinton and Trump’s body language before the debate.

Patti Wood, author of the book “SNAP: Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language, and Charisma.” Wood has experience analyzing body language as it relates to anger, gender roles and apologies, which all proved helpful during the 90-minute spectacle.

The candidates walked out and, in a break with tradition, did not shake hands. Wood offered a thought about why it is so important. “A handshake … signals we are equals. Now we can come out fighting,” she wrote in an email Sunday night. The candidates did eventually shake hands, but not until the close of the debate.

‘He circles like a lion’: Trump declares his dominance
Looking to reverse his fortunes after a week on the defensive, Trump demanded attention with a display of aggressive sniffing, interruptions and emphatic pointing. But, compared with the last debate, “Donald was quite relaxed and calm,” Givens said.
“Trump came forth in full alpha-male mode,” The Post’s Karen Tumulty wrote after the debate. The experts agreed. Trump repeatedly pointed at Clinton as he lobbed accusations at her, a gesture Givens called “aggressive in all cultures.” He also compared Trump’s snorts with “a bull in attack mode.”

“I think the anger actually worked for him,” Wood suggested after the debate. “That’s his superpower.” For Trump, anger helps establish dominance and has a strong appeal, especially for disaffected voters, she said, adding that Americans are often drawn to the candidate who appears stronger.

Givens: “Trump’s constant pacing and restless movements around the stage attracted attention from Hillary's words, and visually disrespected her physical presence on the stage, as in ‘I am big, you are small.’ Wood: “He circles her during her turn. He is like a lion: going in with a biting attack, then keeping his attack energy going by continuing to move and circle.”

Givens: “Sitting is submissive; standing up is assertive. He paces [during her turn] to stay in motion, taking visual attention away from Clinton and her words. … His main message is ‘I am here, see me.’ “
Givens: “His manner of leaning hands and arms on the back of his chair as Hillary spoke was aggressive, too, as in a ‘broadside display’ of power. [It’s] common in the vertebrate world of males showing the biggest, widest parts of their bodies to intimidate rivals.”

Commenting on Trump’s ‘apology’ for the lewd 2005 video first reported by The Post on Oct. 7:
Wood: “Trump attacked Bill Clinton when he had a chance to apologize. A true apology does not include an attack.”Wood: “Clinton smiled as she began to respond to the Bill attack. [That] signals she was ready and confident. Her voice as she delivered was the strongest and angriest I have heard.”
Clinton stumbles on the smile
While Wood approved of Clinton’s performance overall, she said Clinton’s smile looked inappropriate. Both experts also thought Clinton looked comparatively weak when she sat as Trump spoke. Wood: “She stayed calm and even through most of the debates. His circling and staying close to her did not affect her, as scary as it looked to us.”
Givens: “Hillary addressed listeners sympathetically, with positive feelings and positive regard.”

Clinton reacts to Trump’s statement about using a special prosecutor to look into her “situation.” Reacting to Trump’s statements about her email scandal Trump criticizes Clinton saying she is “all talk” Both candidates react to a question asking for “one positive thing you respect in one another.”
Wood: “Because I've been analyzing her body language for a long time, I know her baseline … I think [the smile] was okay in the first debate [since] Trump rambled and had run-on sentences. [He] often did not make sense, so smiling seemed appropriate to communicate that she felt it was funny.”
The second debate was different, Wood said, because Trump spoke in more complete sentences and lobbed more serious accusations her way. This made it feel less natural for Clinton to crack a big smile.
Advice for the next debate
Trump should hew closer to his second debate performance, where he was more consistent across the entire 90 minutes, Wood said.
For Clinton, she offered some counterintuitive advice: Continue to break the rules. This may sound familiar to people who have worked in a corporate setting, Wood said. “A powerful person often breaks the rules.” (Think of the boss who shows up late to meetings.)

If Trump continues to flout the debate guidelines in the Oct. 19 debate, but Clinton sticks to her allotted time, she could look weak by comparison. Wood said she should monitor Trump and continue to establish power by going over her time limits if necessary.

Questions from My HLN Interview This Morning.

A handshake signals, "We are equals, I trust you, I am unarmed as we begin and we can be friends and equals when we finish this battle. A lack a handshake, show disrespect and creates fear and animosity.  


His bulk and circling are threatening. At that point he circles her during her turn he is like a lion. going in with a biting attack then keeping his attack energy going by continuing to move and circle. 




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

Hillary’s smile.

Hillary’s smile.

A couple things stood out am I don't think the smiling worked very well for her it looked inappropriate. I was honored by her composure. As a female she couldn't get mad we don't view anger the same way that we do man. She stayed calm and even through most of the debates. His circling and staying close to her did not affect her. As scary as it looked us.

I definitely think that know if she smiles or she doesn't smile it's a no-win situation for her let me send you a little piece as I've done several years of research on :-
It was often a female cover smile women smile to cover their anger men often smile to cover their sadness
It was often a female cover smile women smile to cover their anger men often smile to cover their sadness
What was admirable,  dare I say amazing,  is that n the context of those attacks she remained, for the most part calm centered and focused on speaking. 

One way to put this in perspective is to imagine how a man in terms of gender based stereotype might have been able to or might have responded. I think there would've been quite a bit of screaming and yelling and pointing.

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

Was Trump’s Apology during the second debates / town hall meeting,real and sincere?

Trump’s Apology during the second debates / town hall meeting.

No not a sincere apology. In fact he labeled it permissible OK normal and acceptable by labeling it as locker room talk. He wanted that to stick in our minds and did so by vocally emphasizing it with over articulation and slowing down and repeating it. For recently married man to boast about assaulting women, and to boast to a newscaster speaks of an immense sense of entitlement and a lack of control. Most people are careful what they say in front of a reporter. Again he was not in a locker room with his pals he was in a news van with a reporter.
If a future leader says that this behavior is OK because it only goes on in locker rooms he is saying when men are in private its normal and ok to denigrate women. 

An apology is always interesting for what it says but also for what it does not say. He did not say that he had changed as a person. He did not say I respect and honor women and do not treat women that way now.

A real apology does not justify bad behavior by saying some other guy is worse than me.

Imagine saying, “Hey I robbed a liquor store and it was not big deal that guy robbed stores too.”

Check out my post, "The Proper Way to Apologize"

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

What made Arnold Palmer the King of Charisma - Insights from Patti Wood, Body Language Expert

What made Arnold Palmer the
King of Charisma

USA TODAY Sports' Lorenzo Reyes was on hand during what was an emotional day as family and friends of Arnold Palmer gathered to celebrate the late golfer's life. USA TODAY Sports

Thousands of people are expected to gather Tuesday in Latrobe, Pa., for a memorial service honoring the Arnold Palmer, known as "The King" of golf but also considered a king of something else —charisma.
Two experts on the subject explained for USA TODAY Sports what made Palmer so charismatic and, in turn, made people so fond of the legendary golfer who died Sept. 25 at the age of 87.
Countless photos show Palmer flashing his signature smile — open mouthed and revealing his front teeth, noted Patti Wood, an expert in body language and nonverbal communication.
“Most boys stop doing that at the age of 5 unless they’re very joyful,’’ said Wood, author of SNAP: Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma. “But he gave that smile all the time. And the crinkles around the eyes showed a sincere, real smile. You just see it over and over and over again."
The smile is encompassed in what Wood cites as charisma’s three categories — likability, attractiveness and power. Likability also includes laugh, and Wood said Palmer had a world-class laugh.
“His jaw would drop down, so he had a large, open mouth,’’ Wood said. “And the sound of his laugh was deep and just very warm and strong at the same time."
Palmer’s attractiveness, well, Wood suggested that requires little expert research.
“Blond and gorgeous,’’ she said. “Handsome and well dressed. He just had some of those classic characteristics of Adonis-like attractiveness.’’
Jennifer Withelm, an international speaker on charisma, said that Palmer wasn’t perfect and neither was his swing. More importantly, she said, he had great integrity.
“He played golf raw, ferocious and unorthodox and was an enormously good golfer nevertheless,’’ Withelm wrote it an email. “Palmer had rough edges and was a great role model for a charismatic person. You don’t have to be perfect. You just have to be full of integrity.’’
Controlled emotions also bolstered Palmer’s charisma, according to Withelm.
“Yes, Palmer showed emotions,’’ she said. “But he was always aware of his emotions, even when he lost. No uncontrolled fits of rages, just pure confidence in his ability to win.
“But Palmer was not always perfect in this personality characteristic. There were times in the 1960s where he wanted to win too badly and lost because he became a high flyer. Over time he got better in tranquility.’’
The rise of TV also captured Palmer’s extroverted ways, evidenced by his interaction with fellow players and fans, and that reflected his charisma, according to Withelm.
“Charisma is a relational phenomenon,’’ she said. “It’s no use to sit in your closet all alone and say: ‘Wow, I am charismatic!’ ” No one will see it.’’

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

The Proper Way to Apologize To Friends, Family, Co-workers and Customers

The Proper Way to Apologize
To Friends, Family, Co-workers and Customers
By Patti Wood Professional Speaker and Trainer

We all make mistakes. Often when we have made a mistake we feel uncomfortable dealing with it.  You first need to clarify in your mind what went wrong. Was it a simple error? Did you not realize it at the time, or did you know and hope you would not get caught? Is it something you feel bad about? Is it something that is likely to occur again? And think about its effect. Was it no big deal shoulder shrugs for the person or was it a heartbreaking mistake. You can't apologize effectively if you don't know what you are apologizing for?  When you examine the mistake follow these rules step-by-step for an apology that takes the pain out of the process for you and lightens the pain of the offended party. The best way to apologize is face-to-face with the person but you can use some of these steps to form an apology letter as well.

Step One - Communicate your apology as soon as possible. Waiting to let some time pass is a great strategy when you’re a gardener waiting for your seeds to grow, but delay allows weeds to grow larger in a garden and bad situations to grow worse in our relationships. Dissonance makes people uncomfortable, so your friend who is upset with you taking a phone call during your lunch, or a customer upset that they waited too long will not remember the good behavior they will emphasize the bad and research shows it will actually grow in severity in their minds.

Step Two -Let go of your desire to win, be right, or make excuses. The Myers Briggs Personality test say there are two types of arguers, Thinkers who think the most important thing in the world is to be right and Feelers who feel it is the most important thing in the world to be liked. If you’re the “I want to be liked” person you may avoid apologizing to save embarrassment or hurting feelings. If you’re the “I am always right” person most of the time it’s not about winning or losing, it is about keeping and or maintaining a relationship.

Step Three - apologize. – You can say, “I apologize,” or “I am sorry.” Or my personal favorite, “I am sorry, I messed up.”

Step Four - Keep the message clear of “buts” and excuses. In order to sound professional you must keep your message clear and free of the “buts” So don’t say, “I’m sorry, but I had to take that phone call it was really important.”  Stay clear of the blame game. “I am sorry, but it’s not really my fault, my boss…”  You might think, “But sometimes it’s not my fault.”  It doesn’t matter who’s to blame; apologize anyway without giving an excuse. If you’re apologizing to a customer you know you are a representative of your company and therefore you have a responsibility to see that things go well. In all your relationships your willingness to be accountable will insure that you are seen as a responsible, mature individual.  If you start making excuses, you may start an argument. If you choose to be agreeable an argument is not possible.

Step Five - If there is an excuse use this magic phrasing. “I am sorry, I messed up, there is a reason and I would like to talk to you about it at some point but the most important thing for you to know now is that I am sorry.”  If the person is calm and rational they will immediately ask you the reason. If they are emotional, angry and upset, they are not ready to hear it and have a discussion about it, and could probably care less, but you have left an opening to talk about it later if you need to. If you absolutely must make an excuse right now for goodness sakes make the excuse briefer than your apology and whether writing an excuse or giving it face-to-face, follow it with another statement of apology.

Step Six - Make sure your voice, facial expressions and body language are sending the same message as your words. If you are not feeling respectful, your tone will tell the tale. When your word message and your nonverbal message disagree, people will always believe your nonverbal message is the true message that comments your honest emotions. If your voice is sarcastic in your message you are wasting your breath to apologize. You must apologize with complete sincerity without any subtle eye- rolls or exasperated looks or even looking away slightly. Anybody who has a teenager in their home knows the difference between a smart mouth apology and a real apology.

Step Seven - Sympathize. This is especially important if the person is emotional. If someone is emotional they will keep emoting till they feel heard and understood. Case in point, an angry customer will get angrier until they know you get their pain. Empathize.  Let the person know that you can identify with his feelings.  For example, “I understand you’re very frustrated about receiving a faulty product or poor service.  I would be frustrated to.”  When someone feels heard they don’t have to keep talking! Their feelings have been validated. You can also assure them that you did not mean them harm. For example, “I did not mean to offend you with that comment.”

Step Eight - Accept responsibility for the situation. You’re an adult. You cannot blame mommy. Be accountable. If you’re not going to be accountable do not apologize just to say you did.  If you are willing let the person know that you intend to do whatever it takes to make things right. You can’t help what has already happened, but you will come up with a solution to the problem. Or if you’re in a business situation you will find someone who can. When I suggest you take responsibility I mean, you accept it. Do not say, “We are sorry.” Instead say, “I am sorry.”

Step Nine - Show your regret. Just as I said people will complain till they see you get there pain, some people will not fully accept an apology unless they know you have suffered too. I don’t mean that meanly, just know that pain for pain can make a conflict disappear. Come right out and say you are sorry or ashamed. “I felt bad the minute I said that. I'm ashamed of myself.”

Step Ten - Take the heat. This is the toughest part. After you say you’re sorry you need to stop and listen to hear the person share their pain and anger.

Step Eleven - Repair the damage. To be complete, an apology must correct the injury. If you damaged someone's property, offer to fix it. If the damage isn't so obvious, ask “What can I do to make it up to you? There may be nothing concrete you can do, but the offer must be sincere. “I'll try to keep my mouth shut in the future. Meantime, let me buy you a cup of coffee. “Another way to repair the damage is to send a note or a small gift.

Step Twelve - Take action. For your apology to be complete you need to do something to repair or fix the injury. Decide what you can do and tell the person. If you won’t be late next time, if you will no longer take cell phone calls at dinner, if you will replace the defective or incorrect product as quickly as possible. Try to avoid the word “try” in your repair step. I have a pet peeve about the word try. I think it makes the user sound like a teenager, “I’ll try not to be late.” Sounds in a teenage vernacular, lame.  If you don’t know what to do, if there is nothing obviously concrete for you to do or you’re not sure what you thought of is enough ask, “What can I do to make this up to you.” If you’re dealing with a customer, you can offer a bonus of some sort or waive fees if possible. It doesn’t hurt to offer friends and family a bonus as well.

Following these steps can soften a hurt. And know that it never hurts to send flowers!!

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

Trump, Hilary Clinton and Anger, What are the Gender Differences.

Gender Differences in Anger 

Unfortunately, we perceive women’s anger differently than we do a man’s. Research shows that if a man is perceived as emotional he is considered more credible for getting angry. But when the woman was perceived as emotional, participants became surer of their own opinion, even if they considered the woman credible. As the researchers in one study put it: “When a woman expresses anger, this does not just make her seem less credible, but seems to make assessing her credibility irrelevant.”(

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