Let’s talk about body language because it can help us make a great first impression and get us where we want to go in life: 

  • We’ll start with: Posture. Body language expert Patti Wood says that the cornerstone of a good first impression is standing up straight with your shoulders back. That’s because our brains make a connection between body position, facial expressions and our feelings. They influence each other. That means, good posture doesn’t just make you look confident; it also makes you feel confident and helps you get over nervousness. 

  • The next body language tip for a meet-and-greet: Your handshake. Elliot Hope teaches law enforcement officers how to read the body language of suspects. And he says that someone who wants to dominate a situation turns their arm during a handshake so that their hand is on top. Because that’s a subconscious way of literally “getting the upper hand.” To avoid appearing aggressive or overbearing, offer your hand palm side up, make eye contact and smile. 

  • One more note on handshakes: At social events, our expert says not to hold your drink in your right hand. If you have to switch out an icy drink to shake hands, your palm will feel cold and clammy, which sends the message that you’re insecure.

  • Finally: When you meet someone new, stand so that your right eye is lined up with their right eye. Experts say that the brain gives more weight to information that comes in through a person’s dominant eye. And because most people are right-eye-dominant, cheating a little to their strong side makes them more comfortable and you more like-able during your first conversation.