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Creating Rapport

Creating Rapport
You can build rapport with someone by matching their ways of
communicating:
Use the actual words they use. Use their jargon, their pre-
ferred terms, even if you think they are using the ‘wrong’
word. It is what it means to them that matters.
Use the same tonality. Say the words the way they do.
Adopt the same physiology. Use the same posture and
gestures.
People create rapport, or a bond with others, by finding shared
experiences. When you meet someone for the first time, you ask
them questions to discover any common ground: perhaps you
went to the same school, support the same football team, visited
the same holiday location, like the same food, music, whatever. As
soon as you find something in common, the relationship starts to
form. Then the chances are you will begin adopting the same pos-
ture: you’ll both have your arms folded, or one hand to your face,
and so on. This will be happening out of conscious awareness.
You are doing this all the time anyway, but may not have realised
it until now. Presenting Magically
Notice this in pubs and restaurants, wherever people are engaged
in conversation or shared activity, how they tend to match or mir-
ror each other. For example, people walking along the street will
naturally fall into the same rhythm; in a pub, they will be leaning
on the bar in the same way, raising their glasses simultaneously.
When one person changes their physiology, their companion very
soon follows. A couple sharing a meal in a restaurant will eat at
the same time, drink at the same time. Should they begin arguing
or disagreeing with each other, this rapport pattern will disappear,
and they will have mismatching physiologies.
When you are in rapport with someone, and matching them in
these ways, they will be paying attention to you, open to hearing
what you have to say. You will probably have agreement - which
could be useful. And because they like you, they will want to
assist you in achieving your outcomes. So rapport smoothes the
way for your being able to get the results you want.
Let’s explore many of the ways you can match someone else to
create rapport.
Matching physiology
Pay attention to someone’s posture, gestures, and movement, and
then match:
The position of their head, shoulders, spine, arms, hands,
torso, and legs.
How they are sitting, standing, or walking - their gait.
How they are sitting: legs crossed, or uncrossed?
Weight distribution: is their spine upright, or curved with
weight more to one side?
Arm position: folded or open?
Hand position: clasped, or open? Clenched or relaxed?
The relationship between the head and the shoulders: is the
head tilted to one side, or angled front to back?
How much they move: are they still or in constant motion?
Their facial expression: are they animated? Frowning or
smiling? Animated eyebrows? Smiling? Showing their teeth?
Any particular gestures?
Rapport
Use the other person’s gestures only when you are talking, not as
they are talking, or you will draw attention to them, and they will
wonder what you are doing. Rapport will then be lost.
How they are breathing: deep or shallow? High up or in
their belly?
Breathing
Breathing in sync with someone also occurs naturally. Getting rap-
port by matching breathing is easy on a one-to-one basis. This is
how you do it.
If someone is talking to you, they are breathing out. So when
they are talking to you, you breathe out. When they pause
for a breath, you breathe in.
Notice, in peripheral vision, any rising and falling in the
chest area. Don’t stare! It’s easier to see movement in the
folds of their clothing. People get bigger as they inhale and
smaller as they exhale, whatever their shape or sex. If you
cannot detect movement in their chest area, watch their
shoulders: they rise when they inhale, and fall when they
exhale. It may be only a slight movement. You can see it eas-
ily from either the back or the front.

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