People with confidence have a physical presence. It shows in their posture, body language, and dress. Along with the above things if you are blind or vision impaired do your best to look at the person, this shows respect and that you are interested in what they are saying. If you look like a confident, capable person, people will treat you accordingly, and eventually you will start to feel it too. This is a good example of the saying “fake it until you make it”.
Now let’s go over the points about your demeanor one at a time. First of all you need to look presentable. None of this, I can’t see the colors or no one was here to help me. If this is the case wait for help if you need it. Remember when we first started and how we talked about it is not a bad thing to ask for help? No? Let me remind you, when you become disabled there will be times you will need to ask for help, especially when you are newly disabled. It may be uncomfortable, but just think how bad it would be going out of the house improperly dressed. I can tell you from personal experience it is not fun. I left the house one day with 2 different shoes! I was horrified and decided not to let that happen again, so now I have my shoes organized better (at least I hope).
Body Language is probably the most important thing that affects your demeanor and how you appear to the world. Picture these 2 people and tell me which one you think would get the job just based on what they look like:
Blonde girl who probably works out, because she seems to have a nice body, but we can’t really tell because she is dressed in a frumpy outfit. Her hair is not brushed very nice (looks like she had the window down in the car), and her shoulders are rolled front. She is also looking down all the time.
Person #2: , Another blonde girl who probably works out, this time we can see that she takes care of her body because she wears clothing that compliments her figure. Her hair is done nicely and she holds her shoulders back and her chest open, this gives an open and receptive feeling. She is always looking up with a smile.
Now, who would you hire? Of course the answer is #2, because she has herself put together. She not only has a smile and is looking up, which makes her look interested, but holding her shoulders back leaving her check open shows she is open to receive information and makes her look friendly.
Her clothing and hair show that she cares about how she looks. If she cares about how she looks then she will probably care about other things in her life as well. When she speaks she has a clear voice that is not to quiet.
Examples of bad body language, here are some examples of what not to do. When you cross your arms in front of yourself that means you are closing yourself off to the world. Looking down means you want to be left alone and you are not interested. Talking to quietly means you do not have confidence in what you are saying and talking to loudly can mean you are trying to take over. Also be sure not to do all the talking, but do some of the talking.
Your demeanor and body language are so very important and may people with disabilities have a difficult time with these skills. We will be talking about body language in one of our group calls because it is that important. I want you to be able to ask questions and feel comfortable in the situations that you encounter.
The three things you need to remember are look at the person (if you can have eye contact), shoulders back, and chin up showing your beautiful smile. If you want to learn more you can check out an article in Psychology Today on body language. Getting these 3 steps down like they are second nature you will be gaining confidence left and right and people may be more apt to come up and talk to you.