TODAY   |  November 26, 2013

Awkward? How body language can help

Learn how to handle tough situations, from meeting a loved one’s family to sitting on a crowded plane and opening a present you hate using body language.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> social situations, travel ones like when you're meeting your partner's family for the first time or making small talk at a party or even on the plane.

>> here is our good friend and president of the body language institute and author of "you can't lie to me." good morning.

>> good morning willie .

>> i think. i'm catching the next flight. you guys go ahead. what do you do when you get the middle seat and it's all elbow fighting.

>> you have to lock it to block it. you're going to be sitting like this for the next 3,000 miles.

>> you have to establish your territory.

>> you have your little phone, make sure you have your head sets before you get into the seat? because you need to be prepared to be antisocial.

>> good.

>> don't sit down in the seat and look for that because now and i have grabbed the territory. it's like we're a dog in heat. we peed in the perimeter and marked our territory, al.

>> what? what kind of plane are we on? i'm not going to fly with you.

>> avoid eye contact and be prepared to be antisocial. if you don't want to talk for 3,000 miles with your head tilted to the side.

>> what about when you got -- you're in the middle seat and folks are asleep -- especially going toward the aisle.

>> that's hard.

>> here's the deal, this is intimate zone. who do we get close to like this?

>> what?

>> this is our loved ones . be careful. if you're having a conversation like this. look at me willie . how you doing.

>> you're very forward.

>> your beard is very fancy.

>> you're in an intimate zone.

>> do you need love al.

>> no, no. don't love me.

>> this is very intimate. intimate zone. it's a little too much to have a long conversation.

>> i asked you about the bathroom. how did we get into that.

>> maybe that's where this is headed.

>> let's move on to another topic.

>> okay. what's our next thing here. here we go. you don't know anybody at the party. you want to make friends. al, i got this.

>> i'm sorry.

>> how do you join in to a social situation where you don't know anyone? i call this decode, develop, deliver. so if -- al, i'm going to have you scoot back over here. willie and i are having a conversation. are we open to having the conversation joined by you? if our body is out like this, we're saying we're open to these people coming and joining us here having a conversation. if we're doing this, we're not interested in being interrupted.

>> like the plane, we're back at it.

>> now develop, how to break into our circle is easy. you want to say two things, one, i only have a second. you have a quick get away and you're not feeling rude or you're intrusive.

>> we have to get to the last thing.

>> if it true? is it true?

>> yes.

>> give each other our present.

>> okay, willie .

>> and this must be for me.

>> you're the best.

>> what happens if you don't like the present you get for the holidays? the bad news is we have an expression that happens in the a 15th of a second on our face. this beautiful sweater.

>> fake smile. if you want to fake a smile good, here's how you do it. a famous movie star said this, stick your tongue behind your top teeth and smile -- you look constipated. smile and say thank you.

>> thank you. when you stick your tongue behind your teeth you wrinkle your eyes and it comes across as genuine.