Video:Nina Conti – How Mixed Messages Create Confusion

Posted on Jun 13

As you probably know much of the meaning of our communication has nothing to do with what we say, our language, but has to do with how we say it- how you use your voice and gestures.

When the messages are mixed it can create confusion and even hilarity…… have a look at this clip of Nina Conti to see what I mean.

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Now I think this is really funny and the humour arises from the incongruency between the man’s body language and gestures compared to what he appears to be saying! His gestures are contradicting his words and the audience is confused.

Because when there is a disparity between the two the brain tends to “believe” the body message over and above the verbal one. So when you’re presenting it’s really important that your gestures are aligned with what you’re saying, that they are not contradicting the verbal message. Otherwise you can easily create confusion in your audience and if you are presenting in an interview for a contract, or a job or even to a bigger audience then it switch them off and could lose you business.

If you’re not sure what gestures you routinely make and whether or not they do contradict what you are saying  then video yourself giving a presentation.

Then pretend that you are a member of your audience as you watch yourself and just notice what you notice.

Give yourself feedback on what you need to do differently so that your message comes across clearly with the impact you want.

Alternatively you can someone else to give you feedback but it can be really valuable to see yourself as others see you!

Until next time,


Cath Daley Ltd

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Posted on Jun 13 in Business Pitching, Business Presentations, Communication skills, Presentation Skills, Public Speaking

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