GUEST BLOG: Ali Arif

When Angela had messaged me asking if I could write an article for her blog, I took the opportunity and was immensely excited.  The experience of her teaching is something I can write about for hours and hours.

Angela came to my school to teach us about the art of body language:

How it can promote leadership, learning, development, entrepreneurship and growth. From the first time I spoke to her, I knew that me and her would get along because she did the best thing possible, which was offering me crisps.

I went into her lesson intrigued and wondering how someone could teach body language, in a way that would keep my attention, for the next hour and a half. I will honestly say that she managed to achieve exactly that, because I remember thinking how weird it was that the class remained silent for the whole time and listened intently.

This was only because Angela remained a constant style of body language with us, which gave us the impression of being friendly and genuine, yet authoritative.

I took the lesson immensely to heart.

I want to go into paediatric nursing when I am older, and know that body language plays a huge role in how care is delivered to the wide range of people who look for treatment. The skills I learnt on eye contact, how speech can be projected and how we all speak one universal language which tells us what implicit messages another person is trying to give were invaluable.

I recently began volunteering in my local Accident & Emergency department, and put these skills to the test.

Having an empathetic approach to care and letting this be known through your body language by crouching down to bed level, making full eye contact and speaking in soft tones while asking patients about their day and if they need a drink can make a world of difference. How different would it be if I was to go in without the knowledge I picked up from Angela: standing over the patients, not really looking at them, asking short and flatly if they needed anything?

It can really help a person, especially if they are in a vulnerable state, to have a body language that reflects how they are feeling,  because it can form the basis of trust and friendship.

Using my skills for evil…!

I have, whether for good or for bad however, been using body language for my own personal gain. I learnt that through the right kind of communication, I could gain myself good student discounts at my favourite shops!

I conclude by thanking Angela for her amazing lesson. It has truly made an impact on the way I can talk to people and understand others.

I know I will never forget the skills I have ever picked up as I am using them daily, and will always remember that first conversation and the way I could tell straight away how good of an educator she is.