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Closing

 

Techniques > Use of body language > Core patterns > Closing

Pattern | Found in | Discussion | See also

 

Pattern

'Closing' is a pattern of defending, hiding, refusing and denying. For example:

  • Lowering the head, with chin down (protecting the neck).
  • Closing mouth and eyes, lowering eyebrows refusing speech and sight.
  • Crossing arms or legs, pulling in shoulders, elbows and knees to protecting organs and vulnerable parts.
  • Turning hands to palms facing down.
  • Curling fingers into the palm, protecting them (and also making a fist).
  • Turning feet to point toes inwards.
  • Hunching down, with any or all of the above, making the body less threatening and a smaller target.

Found in

Discussion

Closing is a classic defensive move, making the body less vulnerable to attack, and is typically seen when a person feels threatened or anxious in some way.

Arms can cross lightly, for example in holding ones hand. They can cover the abdomen or chest. They can clutch opposite elbows. Generally the further across they move and the greater the tension, the greater the close. Likewise legs may be pulled together or may be crossed or even twisted together as tension increases.

These moves also is used to show disagreement or dislike, withdrawing the body away from the other person and showing that you are not open to them and their ideas or desires.

Closing moves the body into a position where further body language is difficult. The only way to go is to either to leave or to open again. In the dance of give-and-take communication, it can thus be a request for the other person to give something or to move away for a while.

See also

Opening, Defensive body language

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