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Thread: How can i read people?

  1. #11
    Senior Member Array Eckhart's Avatar
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    Jan 2010


    It's TV. I think it is happening there in an exaggerated way. But yeah, I guess you can improve in your people reading skills by observing people a lot, paying attention to their body language, learn some theory about human behaviour etc.

  2. #12


    Be highly observant: visual cues, tone, consistency/inconsistency, vibes, and patterns

  3. #13
    morose bourgeoisie Array
    Join Date
    Mar 2009


    Resist the urge to draw conclusions (because it clouds your vision in the short term). Observe. Listen. Assume that everything you see or hear may point to something else, but may not. connect the dots. Hear the words someone chooses. Look for emotional subtexts and body language, including fidgets and flashes of facial expression, and when they happen. Look for things the person is avoiding. Constantly ask 'why'? Remember that you can't rally 'know' the answer from these things. It all just points in a direction.

  4. #14
    scourge Array miss fortune's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
    827 sp/so
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    interact with a lot of people on a daily basis (we're talking something like 50+) and watch them while you interact with them... you will start noticing patterns over time
    Human beings make life so interesting. Do you know that in a universe so full of wonders, they have managed to invent boredom? -Terry Pratchett

  5. #15
    Reason vs Being Array ragashree's Avatar
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    Nov 2008


    Quote Originally Posted by Illmatic View Post
    ^^i don't wanna be them. I just want the skills, i don't want to be MacGuyver.

    I just want the ability to read people. I want to be a good strategist.
    For a start, stop asking other people dumb questions and expecting them to have the answers to everything you need to know so you don't have to sit down and work it out for yourself then, because they don't and never will.

    Next, and once you are used to the process of thinking for yourself and not hoping other people will think for you, start trying to apply apply your own personal observation and reasoning powers to your experiences.

    Then, analyse this using what you have learned. You need to ncorporate knowledge from a variety of sources, don't become too reliant on any one theory because there is no psychological model that singlehandedly explains the manifold complexities of human behaviour all by itself, however much some people might like to believe that there is and try to convince you of this.

    Then, if you have managed to form a conclusion, ensure that it is tentative and open to new interpretations in the light of any further knowledge. Don't just assume that because it makes sense to you, it is necessarily correct and you don't need to take anything further into account. You will most likely just end up looking like a closed-minded fool if you insist on making up your mind at the earliest possible opportunity and sticking to your initial conclusion like a famished pit bull to a juicy shank bone. Also you will most probably be wrong more often than you are right, and, very importantly, not able to realise that you are wrong when you are, which makes the whole exercise essentially worthless, unless you were trying to make yourself feel omnipotent and clever (which is what delusional people like to do) rather than actually understanding the other person (which is what sensible people like to do).

    Finally, do what you can to check the veracity of your conclusions. If you got it all wrong then fine, you need to rip up the book and start again and start again; it's better than persisting down a misguided path just to make things fit together neatly in your own mind. Humans are complicated beings and there are no easy answers to the question of what makes others tick for any of us, limited as we are by the subjectivity of our own knowledge and perceptions and inability to directly access what others percieve and think.
    Look into my avatar. Look deep into my avatar...

  6. #16
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Array Mole's Avatar
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    Mar 2008

    Smile The Epistemology of the Book and the Epistemology of the Telephone

    If we are blind to our epistemology, we can't see.

    We all know how to read a book, and so we apply the same epistemology to a person.

    But what about a different epistemology?

    Rather than saying, read you like a book, we can say, listen to you like the telephone.

    So now we have two epistemologies - the epistemology of the book and the epistemology of the telephone.

    Each epistemology tell us something different.

  7. #17



    Can i learn to do this?

  8. #18


    First start paying attention to the ways everyone acts the same under different circumstances. Then watch for individuality. So if you say, go to a funeral, and observe all the people who are crying because they are upset. Then you look for the individual ways in which they mourn. Then look at the people who are not crying, and how they are reacting to the situation.

    Try to find common themes among the people you are watching. For instance you may find that all the people from one bucket (the loud emotional crying) share similar views on life, and loss. The people who mourn silently have other views, beliefs, or ways of expressing themselves. You come to get to know how people interact from a natural state. The groupings of people who interact the same, under any possible condition.

    Then you can observe the same characteristics under different circumstances, and get a feel for how each sub-category differs in different circumstances. Then you pick up when something is off. Out of the norm, you have this person acting in this way, and can narrow in that something is different about how they are perceiving the current situation. Compare that against the knowledge you have acquired about different reactions under different circumstances, and see which reaction fits naturally to the current situation.

    Then take the unnatural reaction and apply it to the normal situation, and connect the ideas of why someone would think that way under these circumstances.

    Once you have a hypothesis, watch for cues to either support or negate your idea. If they cues seem to conclude that you were correct in your reading, good for you. If not, start again and see where you made a mistake.

    Basically, learn what people do. Learn what individual people do. Learn what is the norm, so you can pick up on the abnormal, then personalize the experience to the person you are trying to read.

    Did that make any sense? Lol!

  9. #19
    Mr. Blue Array entropie's Avatar
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    Apr 2008
    3w2 so


    You'll find in peoples minds nothing you wouldnt know yourself. It's just their way to draw a conclusion or to make a decision that will be different and that you'll never be able to know. Yet with an interchanging perspective of yourself, which is won by experience, there cant be too much to shock you anymore
    Johari / Nohari

    "How dreadful!" cried Lord Henry. "I can stand brute force, but brute reason is quite unbearable. There is something unfair about its use. It is hitting below the intellect."
    ~ Oscar Wilde - The picture of Dorian Gray

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