Standing Like This Makes You Less Attractive, Study Says
According to research, you should reconsider your stance.
Everyone strives to be their most confident and attractive self. Of course, there are many things that factor into actually getting there. Maybe, you feel like you can conquer the world after a good haircut or fresh manicure. Or, you're most on top of your game after a long bike ride or weight-lifting session. However, if there's one thing that can help everyone look and feel their best, it's good posture. (Bonus: It can also help you avoid back pain.) Read on to discover which standing posture can make you seem less attractive, according to a study.
A "closed" posture can make you less attractive.
You already know slouching is bad. But did you know it could make you less attractive? One 2016 study from The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) found that when people on speed dates used an expansive posture, their partners were more likely to want to see them again compared to those who were in contracted positions.
An expansive, open posture was defined as featuring widespread limbs and a stretched torso that enlarges a person's space. A contractive, closed posture was described as collapsing the limbs and body inward to take up a smaller amount of space.
"For every single unit increase of expansiveness on the scale, that person was 76 percent more likely to get a 'yes' response from their speed-dating partner," study author Tanya Vacharkulksemsuk told medical news service Medical XPress. Making the simple tweak from closed to open just might make you more successful in the dating game.
Be wary of crossing your arms.
Crossing your arms is another stance to avoid. "When your arms are crossed, that is a closed body language cue," says Karen Donaldson, celebrity communication, body language, and confidence coach. "It can signal a few different things, including disinterest, tension, coldness, an unwillingness to listen, and social anxiety."
Of course, there's a time and place for crossing your arms. For example, if you're waiting for a friend at a restaurant and aren't open to communication from strangers, it may be a good idea to cross your arms to potentially ward off unwanted "hellos."
Also, avoid these common anxiety tip-offs.
When we're feeling anxious or stressed, many of us tend to do certain things with our bodies, like repeatedly touching our face or neck. However, these anxious ticks can make us less approachable. This is called a displacement gesture. "It's a signal that you're feeling nervous, anxious, or scared," says Donaldson.
You'll also want to consider your eye contact and the position of your hands. Avoid keeping your eyes on the ground and tucking your hands into your pockets. "This body language has mixed meanings," says Donaldson. "For the most part, we hide our hands when we feel uncomfortable, it's a self-soothing gesture. It can also signal that we are hiding something and not being upfront with others."
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Instead, stand with your feet a little less than shoulder-width apart.
Fortunately, there are easy ways to revamp your posture to appear more attractive and confident. First, stand with your feet a little less than shoulder-width apart, says Jodi R.R. Smith, human resources professional, etiquette consultant, and founder of etiquette consulting service Mannersmith Etiquette Consulting. Then, rest your arms at your sides. "Holding a glass in your left hand allows you to easily maintain this posture," says Smith.
Keep your shoulders rolled back and down and your chin parallel to the floor. The finishing touch? Smile as you make eye contact with others. "This open body stance indicates you are comfortable, confident, and ready to interact," she adds.