Four reasons why body language is important. First, people factor body speech into their overall impression of you. Human communication a training, and not just the words coming out of your mouth. Communication is also how you move your hands, the look in your eyes, and your facial expressions. People assemble all these different signals together into an overall impression of the message that you are sending out… and an overall impression of you. You are the sum of all of the communication signals you send out.

Why body language is important, decode other people

It’s commonly accepted that we assemble everything we notice about a person into a complete assessment of them. But if you tried to describe all of the reasons that you came to that assessment, it would be tough to articulate. You might talk about how their voice was a little rude, or how their arms made them appear standoffish… but what else?
Therein lies the power of body language and non-verbals, most of the time, they are picked up subconsciously. And that’s what makes body language so powerful and frustrating at the same time. People normally lack awareness and don’t admit that they’ve factored body language into their decision about others… but it’s often more powerful than the words people speak.
Ever hear someone say “I just didn’t like their vibe” when describing someone that they’ve met for all of 30 seconds? That’s it.
It might be latent, but people are heavily influenced by the signals that others send out with non-verbally, so you must be careful and be aware of how you act when you are trying to communicate.
Second, lacking body language awareness can set you back.
In most situations, especially with new people, others are just trying to understand your character. Once they understand your character, they will usually make a quick judgment about whether they like you and want to invest more time in getting to know you. It’s a sad but realistic truth.
When people judge you, it is based primarily on (1) what others say about you, (2) what you yourself say, and (3) your body language and non-verbals. 

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Guess which of those 2 you can control?
At the most basic level, you can either give create comfort or discomfort with your body language signals. If you can make that great, comfortable impression verbally and non-verbally, people will seek to enforce those positive impressions they have of you.
People are more efficient and quick to judge than they realize – much of it of course, being subconscious. We are always on the lookout for those that we like and dislike, and body language can either propel you ahead or set you back with people.
Third, great body language will propel you forward.
In contrast to the previous point, great body language can rescue you even if you say the wrong thing at the absolute wrong time.
You can project strength, humor, humility, sarcasm, charisma, and a host of positive adjectives that we all aspire to. And again, this can be in spite of what you actually say. It takes the pressure off always having to be witty and say something clever.
If you consistently control your body language, you can project a message consistent with your verbal message. This makes you appear more authentic, sincere, and honest. In a business context, this strengthens your bargaining position and makes you a tougher adversary to negotiate with. In a relationship context, you will be able to avoid many games simply by being straightforward and not sending mixed messages.
Finally, your body language affects people’s perception of you.
As I mentioned prior, people are always making snap judgments subconsciously. People are trying to figure out where in relation you are to them in the social hierarchy, so they know whether they want to invest more time in you. They look at your clothes, shoes, how you talk, your accent, your facial expressions, your body language, and your word choices.
Then all of these factors go into a black box, which spits out a sheet grading your class, character, and general value and worth. The value of how your body talks, your body language, is simply incalculable. We’ve all heard that you will get ahead in life according to who you know… but that’s only half the battle. You really get ahead in life according to who you know, and who likes you.

Learning great body language for yourself, and learning to decode others, will get you most of the way to people simply liking you. Otherwise, regardless of your actual accomplishments and regardless of how good of a person you really are, you may convey that your accomplishments are worthless, and you’re not that great of a person after all.
Of course, remember that this is a book of possibilities, and not a book for exact meanings. Everyone is different as a result of their experiences and perspective, so an act for someone may be different for someone else.

Shrugging has many meanings and is almost always context-dependent.
If you are in unfamiliar territory or a somewhat threatening social situation, a shrug indicates defensiveness and discomfort. This is especially so if the shrug is held, which is a position that indicates stress. Many people carry their stress and anxiety in their shoulders unconsciously, and often have tense shoulders if they are under stress at work.
In other contexts like when faced with someone aggressive or confrontational, it can indicate submission.
It can be as simple as someone attempting to communicate that they don’t want to dominate a situation, so they acquiesce and simply show acceptance as subtly as possible. It can also be your amazingly passive-aggressive friend indicating that they are okay with a choice externally… but barely holding inside their annoyance and contempt.
Shrugging can be an honest “I don’t know,” or “I don’t care,” or a subtle opposite effect when paired with a wide-eyed sigh. Shrugging is an everyday body language quirk that you must be sure to pair with appropriate secondary body language signals, otherwise it can convey a gamut of negative emotions.