Robert Phipps - Body Language Expert

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Gordon Brown on Youtube PDF Print E-mail
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How do you crack a winning smile?

By Tom Geoghegan 
BBC News Magazine 

Gordon Brown's smile has been mocked by John Prescott and thousands on YouTube. But is there a secret to improving your smile? 

There's not a lot that Gordon Brown and Victoria Beckham have in common, but getting stick for their smiles is one of them. 

Mrs Beckham has been accused in the past of not smiling enough and she's joked about it, saying recently that she's been taking lessons to "master a smirk". 

For the prime minister, there's less cause to raise the corners of the mouth. 

He has suffered a week of ridicule for his YouTube venture, described by Guardian sketchwriter Simon Hoggart as featuring "the smile a 50-year-old man might use on the parents of the 23-year-old woman he is dating". SNAP YOUR SMILE - AND SEND IT TO US 
Send us a picture of your smile for body language expert Robert Phipps to analyse
E-mail your picture to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it subject line "SMILE"
Don't forget to include your name, age and where you live ... and, if you like, a sentence or two about your smile

Now the former deputy prime minister, John Prescott, has imitated Mr Brown's grin while calling it the "worst bloody smile in the world". 

But faking a smile can't be easy, especially when the subject you're trying to make light of is the reform of MPs' personal finances. 

And every bride knows how hard it is to turn a smile on and off for hours. So what's the secret to making a smile look natural? 

"The key is to put the thought whatever makes you happy - your children, a holiday, a birthday party - through your head before you smile," says body language expert Robert Phipps. "Then it comes across as much more genuine. 

"It relaxes you if you're in a stressful situation and you have to put on a front. Think of things that genuinely make you happy." TIPS FOR A TOP SMILE 
Think happy thoughts
Take a deep breath and relax
Stand or sit straight, with shoulders back
Keep your head level, don't drop or tilt
Don't hold it because it will turn into a grimace
Better to look elsewhere, change the expression then return to the smile
Source: Robert Phipps

There are two muscles that move when we smile, he says. The zygomatic muscle turns the corner of the lips up to meet the eyes and the orbicularis oculi squints the corners of the eyes and causes the crows' feet. 

Genuine smiles make the eyes and the corner of the mouth turn to meet each other but fake it and it's hard to make these muscles work because they are not easy to control. 

"Gordon Brown is one of those people that can't hide his emotions very well and when he smiles genuinely - when he's with his wife and kids and quite relaxed - he's got quite a warm face but when he puts on the smile for the cameras it's not natural." 

Three of the best smilers in politics are Tony Blair, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, says Mr Phipps, and they all exude confidence and relaxation. 

All in the eyes 

Mr Blair was adept at the timing of the smile, he says. He could smile, then change his expression, look somewhere else and then return to the smile again. 

"A smile is key to an overall impression. You are either believed or not believed by how you present yourself. It's important to smile at the right moment because smiling at the wrong moment means your message is completely and utterly lost." 
Think happy thoughts, Gordon

The non-verbal communication of politicians is all about image and those three men knew when to pause, when to slow things down, when to look there and when to look elsewhere. 

Personality coach Jeremy Milnes says you can spot a bad smile because there's no honesty in the eyes. 

"There's uncertainty. You can look into the eyes and you know this person is not smiling for real. The expression is stiff and not relaxed because the muscles are tense. 

"The smile is not brought about by emotions but by a person changing their muscle shapes. It's forced." 

Practising in the mirror is a good idea because you can tell what works, he says, and if you're lacking confidence then it's better to give a small smile than a cheesy grin, especially if you have bad teeth. 

"Be aware of your teeth and be honest to yourself about them. If you have good teeth, flaunt them but avoid the big cheesy grin because it can look ridiculous." 

- SEND US A PICTURE of your smile for body language expert Robert Phipps to analyse 

- E-mail your picture to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it subject line "SMILE" 

- Don't forget to include your NAME, AGE AND WHERE YOU LIVE... and, if you like, a sentence or two about your smile 

Alternatively, add your comments on this story, using the form below.

Forgotten Communication PDF Print E-mail
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Body Language and Modern Life

On a daily basis, most people overestimate the power of electronic media and speech. Although telephones, mobiles, pagers and computers are incredibly useful and provide instantaneous conveyance of information, sometimes they are substandard in that the main key of conversation is missing: emotion.

Typing an email to a friend, or sending a report to your boss, it is incredibly difficult to express yourself correctly with the written word, and more and more so with the typed word as the need for handwriting is fading out.

As having conversations face-to-face is becoming a thing of the past for many remote-offices and working from home businesses, people are missing out on the human contact that can be so beneficial, on both a professional and personal level.

Not only does speaking indicate how people are feeling about a situation, more importantly, body language affects a conversation. Body language is a term for communication that transcends conscious contact and works instead of, or additionally to sounds and language.

This can be anything from subtle creasing of the eyes if someone finds something amusing, to the strong gesture of crossing arms when someone feels vulnerable or enraged.

By utilising and fully comprehending this paralanguage, master communicators – those who are trained to understand the significance of body language – can foresee how people will react to certain information and how they are feeling, although they often haven`t said anything.

This is of course beneficial for personal relationships as one can tell when people are becoming aggressive or angered by a situation, or when friends and relatives need extra attention and motivation.

You can also use flirty body language to make an impression on someone you are interested in, and to judge if they respond accordingly. This skill is also incredibly useful in a professional environment, as one can sense when to push a difficult topic – like a pay rise, or a work-related query – farther and when to stop.

It also means one can determine what kind of impression they are making. If you enter an interview with open gestures, good posture and unfolded arms, you are bound to present yourself as a more amiable potential colleague than someone hunched over with closed gestures and no eye contact.

Robert Phipps is a `master communicator`, a nationally renowned body language expert who can help you to gain the ability to present yourself in a confident way. Having already worked for the BBC, Sky News and other major channels as a political body language expert, Phipps is also the resident expert for Trisha Goddard show on channel five.

He has recently brought out a DVD set which means that you can find out the details of this skill for yourself; it is now available as a digital download. By understanding and utilising body language, you can unlock the secret to presenting yourself as a confident and agreeable person and ensure you make a great first impression and the right lasting impression.

Appraisals and Non Verbal Communication PDF Print E-mail
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Non Verbal Indicators and Appraisals by Robert Phipps

If you want to lead, inspire, develop and co-ordinate your staff effectively, you must first be able to work out what each of them thinks and feels about their roles.

While more and more business leaders are recognising this and holding regular conversations with their team members, all too often these discussions are far from the open, honest, two-way feedback sessions they should be.

An ability to read and understand the non verbal indicators or body language is invaluable if managers want to find out what’s really going on behind their team members’ polite smiles.

Recently I sat in on some appraisals to observe and give feedback, here’s a typical example of what went on.

How We Communicate PDF Print E-mail
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It is often said that in face-to-face communications regarding emotions, the words we speak actually account for less than 10% of the message that we convey, while body language accounts for more than half of our message (our tone of voice supposedly communicates the rest). Body language is important, and if your words say one thing but your body says another, the person you are speaking to is more likely to believe the message your body is communicating. Here's how to start using body language to improve your day-to-day communications and, more importantly, to improve your quality of life.

Flirting Body Language PDF Print E-mail
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Flirting Body Language 

Whether we realise it or not we are communicating all the time. Irrespective of what our mouths are saying, our body language transmits our thoughts and feelings like a primal beacon. These signals are never more on display than when it comes to flirting!

Social gatherings are fascinating for watching body language -particularly when people are flirting with each other. It 's no surprise to learn that women are the masters of interpreting this secret code and can often be aware of a budding relationship long before her male counterparts have even realised the couple in question even know each other.

Reading And Using Sexual Body Language PDF Print E-mail
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Reading and using sexual body language.

When ever I give a talk, seminar, lecture, I can guarantee that I'll be asked about three things that body language is crucial to and they are:

How to spot a liar, how to be more confident and how to flirt better.

Well here's a piece from my friend David DeAngelo onsexual body language. This one is for the guys, I'll add another for the ladies soon.

Attractive women know within SECONDS of seeing and/or interacting with you if you're a sexually aware, confident man.

And they make the SUBCONSCIOUS decision of whether or not you're a possible sexual partner within a maximum of a few minutes of interacting with you.

These subconscious decisions are made mostly on the basis of body language and voice tone.

And since we know that "Attraction Isn't A Choice", we can generalize the following:

1) If you don't know what types of body language communicate that you're one of these "sexy beast" guys, you're probably not doing the right things "by accident".

2) The words you say actually don't matter much. What matters is HOW you say them, both with your voice and with your body language.

3) It is possible to learn how to communicate that you're a "sexually aware, confident man" using your body language and voice tone.

Learning this skill will make attracting women MUCH easier.

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