Sunday, January 20, 2013

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2275:
Lance Armstrong's Insincerity -
Body Language revealed in Oprah Winfrey Interview
Part III

Another nonverbal signal of Lance Armstrong's insincerity is revealed in the way he touches his chest when trying to convey understanding and truthfulness. Most displays of "self-touching" are examples of what are known as MAPs (Manipulators, Adaptors or Pacifiers) and are, in general signals of anxiety - although when viewed in cluster-context, their meanings can be much more specific. 

At multiple times throughout his interview with Oprah Winfrey, Armstrong touches his chest with only the tips of his fingers & thumb. During moments when we feeling true sincerity (not seen above), gestures of chest touching involve the whole hand including the palm. This "palmar touch" occurs with the whole hand contacting the chest over the heart (left side of chest) and/or the sternum/manubrium (although parts may extend to the right side of the chest). Note in the above video segment during the 2:30 mark, when the disgraced bicycler says, "...I understand ..." Armstrong touches with only his fingertips over his sternum. This is a great example where a person's words contradicting his body language. Whenever the verbal and the nonverbal are in disagreement - the nonverbal language always tells the truth.

It is contradictory body language to display a full-palm-to-chest nonverbal with one's legs crossed in the manner Armstrong has them configured throughout much of this interview (The "American figure-4"). If one had their legs crossed in this way, and then felt a moment of true sincerity, honesty, affection or empathy - the legs would naturally uncross. However, when clustered together, the "figure-4" along with the "fingertip-only to chest" contact are congruent with insincerity.

Another important distinction of the full palmar contact vs. fingertip only contact is made over longer time durations and multiple observations. Full palm-of-hand contact to the left chest or sternum is seen more often in individuals with higher empathy quotients and thus are very rare in sociopaths. Those with low empathy quotients (such as narcissists, sociopaths and psychopaths) rarely display the body language of full palmar contact.

See also:

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2273: Lance Armstrong & Oprah Winfrey, Part II, Lance Gives Away More with His Body Language -  He told more Lies

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2272: Lance Armstrong's Mia Culpa with Oprah Winfrey  Body Language Part I

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2207: Body Language, Sincerity and Mahmoud Abbas  United Nations grants Palestine "Nonmember Observer State"

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 1900: Palmar Touch of another Person, an Animal or Object

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 1829: Dara Torres Interview with Piers Morgan - Embarrassment,  Visual Recall, Sexual Anticipation Lip Biting &  Sincerity Quotients

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2220:  Harry Reid on Jim DeMint's Retirement - A Body Language Tell of Insincerity

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2143:  Meyers and Bailey Leonard - The Illini, The Marine & The Reunion -  Emotional Processing & Sincerity

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2183: Barack & Michelle Obama's Tweet - The Palmar Touch, Body Language and an Affectionate Hug

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 1866:  Miley Cyrus & Liam Hemsworth are Engaged -  An Affection-Love Sincerity Signal