The 3 L’s of Relationship Building – Look
While Love, Lust and Luxury might be top of your list, the 3 key L’s of Relationship Building are Look, Listen and Learn.
This is the first of a three part series about the 3 L’s of Relationship Building, this article will focus on Looking. Next week will tackle Listening and the following week will focus on Learning how to effectively use looking and listening skills to build meaningful relationships.
So, how is looking going to build effective relationships you may ask, and what are you looking for or at?
Your complete and undivided attention should be on the person you want to build a relationship with. This may be a work colleague, a friend, partner or child, but the concept remains the same. When you are talking to this person you need to take an holistic view.
Look at them, no truly look at them, their hair, their clothes, their style, their body language, their eye contact, their facial expressions and even the distance between you.
All of these things will tell you something about this person’s personality, comfort level, passion for the subject matter, integrity and willingness to communicate with you.
Body language is a key indicator of comfort and openness and while there is a whole study on this subject there are a couple of points to note.
Firstly, if the person continually takes a step away from you, you are in their personal space. You may have experienced the personal space intruder yourself, it’s not a pleasant experience. The tip here is to hold your ground, don’t keep following them by stepping forward.
Secondly, unless it is a cold day and they are in a t-shirt; if they have their arms folded in front of them, it generally means they are feeling somewhat defensive, even anxious.
If they are leaning forward, they are showing interest, looking up, they are thinking, however if they are having difficulty maintaining eye contact, this could be because they are shy, embarrassed, intimidated or even lying. So you will need to look at the rest of their demeanour to determine what might be going on.
Focus on clearing your mind and taking a thoughtful look at the person you are talking to, it will help you understand their communication and personality style, which will in turn give you the tools to treat them how they want to be treated and build a more effective relationship.