Nonverbal Messages Speak Louder Than Words

Nonverbal messages give a sneak preview into knowing what’s on another person’s mind. He can’t hide it because it’s unconscious. He doesn’t know he’s sending you a message.

Sure, you often know the meaning of his expressions and gestures. But there are times when you may not. A fleeting gesture may cross his face before it can register in your consciousness.

But now being alert for the little nuances, you’ll catch more and by studying what those nonverbal messages mean, you’ll understand his moods.

Many black men state that black women don’t give off signals to let a man know she’s interested in him. In part, this could be because men don’t always have the well-developed intuitive faculties that women seem to, meaning that men don’t catch the signals she’s throwing off. He doesn’t know they lie just beneath his cognitive radar.

A man was talking to a woman but felt that she was not responding to him favorably. He told a male friend, “I’m not sure she likes me. I don’t want to keep putting myself out there if she isn’t interested in me. Besides she could file a harassment charge if I keep trying to talk to her.”

It’s possible that the woman was responding to him in ways in which he was unaware. She may have liked him but was hesitant about entering into a relationship.

Consider that black women face many hardships and oppression, such as, coming from single-family homes to facing economic challenges to being single parents themselves. When considering dating, the black female is cautious.

When in a relationship with him, if she slips just once, she could get pregnant. Being with the wrong guy could add to her already heavy load. Maybe she was even in a domestic violence relationship at one time.

These thoughts can cause her to be very selective when it comes to dating, even turned off from it, depending on how burdened she feels.

The black female may be grappling with low self-esteem and feels that she’s being judged and criticized. In a conversation with her, if you check out her nonverbal messages, you can pick up on her feelings.

  During Black Dating, it’s Important to Not be Clueless

Of course, all black women aren’t difficult to approach or come from single-family homes or are heavily burdened or refuse to give off clues that she’s interested in a man.

Women do give clues—consciously and unconsciously—as to whether she’s interested in a particular man or not. But is he observant enough to notice them and decipher their meaning?

People get their point across verbally as well as nonverbally. Unfortunately, often it’s the nonverbal messages that are given low priority when it actually tells loads about another person. When people meet for the first time, they size each other up even before the first hello.

This can be good or not so good. She can pass up a diamond in the rough by making a snap decision of not getting to know him. She might think the guy who’s about to say hello reminds her of her abusive ex.

The same holds true when a man snap-judges a female. She might resemble his previous date—you know—the one who bleached his jeans. But he should not automatically lump her in with his ex unless she’s carrying a bottle of bleach in her hand.

In the picture above, the woman appears guarded to some degree. She gives off mixed messages. Her arms and legs are crossed but her eye contact is good and her smile seems genuine. She needs more time to feel comfortable enough to drop her guard. But if conditions get complicated for her, she’ll exit stage right. Or left.

  Understanding Nonverbal Messages is a Valuable Tool

A woman approached JP in a grocery store and struck up a conversation with him while selecting apples. She smiled at him often, lightly touched his arm a couple of times, and said, “I’m so glad I needed apples today.”

JP found the woman attractive, but confusing. He didn’t know what she meant when she made the comment about needing apples. If JP could’ve understood her words as well as her nonverbal messages (smiling and touching), he would’ve known that she was coming on to him.

In olden times, she would’ve dropped her handkerchief for him to pick up. That would’ve left no doubt the message she was trying to convey. But times have changed.

Along with the gestures the woman made when selecting her apples, she may have given other signals consciously or unconsciously like touching her hair or batting her lashes.

    Knowledge of Nonverbal Messages is a Powerful Tool for the Black Dating Experience

Nonverbal messages speak louder than words and carries more meaning. This is because people can lie with their words but their body language speaks the truth because it’s done unconsciously.

The woman above may seem disinterested in the man who’s talking to her. But don’t get it twisted. Check out her body language. What are the hints she’s dropping?

First, notice that her legs are wide apart, signifying that she’s relaxed and open. Next, the hand to the hat or hair suggests a flirtatious gesture. Her chest is thrust forward. Her wrist is exposed, pointing to flirtatiousness as well.

The guy who can read her nonverbal messages, despite what her words may be saying to the contrary, will know that he stands a chance. He’ll realize that she gives off hints that encourage him to stick around.

Learning about nonverbal messages will put you ahead of the game. Why? Because subtle messages speak louder than words.

For more on this valuable tool, check out my book…

  1. Black Dating
    1. Nonverbal Communication
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