The stinky perfume you don’t want to wear at job interviews, or anywhere else for that matter, has three main ingredients: desperation, fear and of low status.

Any one of these is stinky, but together they make a repellent!

How does it look when someone wears this perfume? Woody Allen is great at impersonating such people in his characters, people unconsciously communicating “I’m crazy, I’m weird, I’m lost” thereby sabotaging themselves.

This shows in their posture, in their eyes, in their manner of blinking, in their manner of speech. In plain words: they appear insecure.

What do insecure people do?

Insecure people take up little space and make themselves small.

They are over-reactive and apologize a lot thereby signaling low status.

Insecure people are shifty, make jerky movements or glance sheepishly around.

Insecure people avoid the silence. They talk a lot and fast, they may even stumble over their own words and stutter. They are afraid of being interrupted and try to say as much as possible while holding the floor.

Insecure people speak softly and in higher pitch or constrict their throat while speaking.

Insecure people often talk with rising intonation at the end of a statement, something which is associated with questions. This can be interpreted by the listener as lack of competence.

In contrast: what do confident and competent people do?

They display inner security by moving less.

They have a clear and focused look.

They know that silence actually increases the appearance of personal strength and know how to command the pauses.

They are not afraid to be loud either.

They use falling intonation at the end of the sentence thereby signalling authority. Even questions are often spoken by confident people with a falling intonation which makes them sound like commands.

When presenting oneself of negotiating, it is important to create an inner reality that radiates strength and self-confidence because it is this inner reality that determines your outward behaviour.

An inner state of strength produces outward signals that are perceived as persuasive and attractive. The good news is that the inner reality is something that can be changed and cultivated.

How do you cultivate inner strength? Guess what, this is actually a question of doing less rather than doing more! Try the following suggestions and see how it feels:

Move as little as possible. Stay calm and relaxed. Imagine yourself expanding and even penetrating into the space of others. Notice how this manifests itself in your movements and gestures!

Keep the focus of your eyes on the other person and try to project your thoughts into their head. Imagine that you are a Jedi knight who can move objects with his eyes and bring that intensity into your sight.

Take a break of 5-6 seconds before answering. Learn to feel comfortable while waiting. Speak slowly, clearly and end your statements on a falling intonation.

Avoid striving to appear logical because logic is justification and justification is an attribute of low status.

And here is the best part: you can practice getting into powerful inner states so that when you get into them, they trigger the respective outward behaviours! Here are two methods you can practice:


1. Pick a role model you admire and imitate him/her: from posture and stature to voice quality and mimic. How does that feel?

2. Imagine that your role model is on a cinema screen and behaves the way you want to be able to. As you watch, begin to change the facial features of your role model to resemble your own! And then, slowly, look at the screen and see yourself behaving just like your role model!

3. Project yourself mentally onto the screen and act the part of your role model. You see through your own eyes, you perceive the environment through your own senses. How does that feel?

Practicing states of inner strength

Choose 3 resourceful states and recall situations in your life in which you have experienced them! Useful examples:

– conviction that you are doing the right thing

– dominance: feeling comfortable and owning your space

– passion and enthusiasm


Put stickies on the floor with the respective state on them. Step into the sticky, recall the state and feel it for size and comfort.

Practice quick transitions from one state into another. Walk 10 steps while being in one state and then step into another. Learn to put on different states like pieces of clothing. Practice daily!

Such powerful inner states are a very attractive perfume! And telling your stories out of powerful inner states makes for powerful stories!

Author: Teodora Rudolph
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