What Every BODY is Saying Book Summary - What Every BODY is Saying Book explained in key points
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What Every BODY is Saying summary

An Ex-FBI Agent’s Guide to Speed-Reading People

4 (410 ratings)
15 mins

Brief summary

What Every BODY is Saying by Joe Navarro is a fascinating read on nonverbal communication. Navarro, a former FBI agent, provides insights on body language, facial expressions, and behavior interpretation to help you better understand people and situations.

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    What Every BODY is Saying
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    Nonverbal communication is a reliable and honest way of transmitting information.

    “Yes,” she says, “that’s my final answer.” Well, is it really?

    “I like you,” he says. Or does he?

    Is it possible to predict future social encounters and avoid the disappointing ones? Is there any way to detect people’s true intentions just by having a conversation with them?

    Yes, there is, and we already use it every day.

    Body language is the key to understanding people’s real thoughts. About 60 to 65 percent of all interpersonal communication is nonverbal. Things like facial expressions, gestures, touching, body movements, and voice tone and volume make up our nonverbal communication.

    Human communication is like a puzzle and our spoken words are just one piece of it. Each movement or non-movement in a conversation tells part of the story as well.

    Nonverbal communication is so important that two complete strangers who don’t share a language can still become friends. The author himself experienced this: when he first migrated from Cuba to the US at age eight, he could only understand his classmates by reading their body language. He eventually learned English, but he’d already made friends before that.

    Nonverbal cues are more reliable than the spoken word. People aren’t always aware of the nonverbal signals they send, so the truth might be hidden in them.

    Imagine a suspect who refuses to confess to a crime. When you ask her where she was at the time of the crime, she might tell you a reasonable story about how she was going on a walk and turned right at a certain corner. But if you catch her hands turning left when she says that, you have a pretty strong reason to not believe her. Subconsciously, her body language emphasized the real direction and gave away her lie.

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    What is What Every BODY is Saying about?

    This book is all about the hidden meanings we can find in our body language. Our brains control our body movements without us being conscious of it, and sometimes those movements can be very revealing. This book goes into detail about the ways you can train yourself to become an expert in observing other people’s nonverbal cues and uncovering their meaning.

    What Every BODY is Saying Review

    What Every BODY is Saying (2008) by Joe Navarro is a captivating exploration of nonverbal communication and body language, an essential skill for understanding others. Here's why you should read this book:

    • Offering concrete examples and practical tips, it equips readers with the tools to decipher hidden signals in everyday interactions.
    • By combining scientific research and personal experiences, the book creates a fascinating perspective on how body language impacts our relationships and interactions.
    • Its engaging storytelling and anecdotal evidence make it an enjoyable read, ensuring that the topic of body language is far from boring.

    Best quote from What Every BODY is Saying

    The best predictor for future behavior is past behavior.

    —Joe Navarro
    example alt text

    Who should read What Every BODY is Saying?

    • Anyone interested in psychology
    • Anyone who wants to improve his or her observational skills
    • Anyone who wants to get better at understanding people’s true thoughts and intentions

    About the Author

    Joe Navarro is a former FBI agent. He worked as a special agent for 25 years, during which time he mastered the art of decoding people’s body language. He has written extensively on the subject of nonverbal communication, and What Every BODY is Saying is his most famous book.

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    What Every BODY is Saying FAQs 

    What is the main message of What Every BODY is Saying?

    The main message of What Every BODY is Saying is understanding nonverbal communication for better human interactions.

    How long does it take to read What Every BODY is Saying?

    The reading time for What Every BODY is Saying varies, but it typically takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is What Every BODY is Saying a good book? Is it worth reading?

    What Every BODY is Saying is worth reading as it provides valuable insights into decoding body language, enhancing communication skills, and understanding people better.

    Who is the author of What Every BODY is Saying?

    The author of What Every BODY is Saying is Joe Navarro.

    What to read after What Every BODY is Saying?

    If you're wondering what to read next after What Every BODY is Saying, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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    • Scarcity Brain by Michael Easter
    • Social Empathy by Elizabeth Segal
    • Surrounded by Setbacks by Thomas Erikson
    • Behave by Robert Sapolsky
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