Ed Sheeran's recent guest appearance on The Graham Norton Show has hilarious comedic value - and dozens of dozens of excellent nonverbal teaching examples also make it worth your while.
Mr. Sheeran's sincerity quotient is significantly higher than average - especially when compared with most celebrities.
At multiple times during this interview, Mr. Sheeran displayed "Knee Pulling" also known as "Hamstring Dissonance". As this second synonym implies - this behavior is a nonverbal equivalent of "I want to tell you, but I don't want to tell you" or "I have excitement but anxiety too".
During this exchange (seen with nearly all of Graham Norton's guests), Ed Sheeran speaks of several embarrassing events. His hesitancy to share these stories it's quite understandable - particularly in such a public setting. Hamstring dissonance is an under-appreciated nonverbal behavior, for it signals conflicting emotions which, in the everyday world (and UNLIKE Sheehan does here) - are usually NOT conveyed verbally. Thus hamstring dissonance is a profoundly valuable tell which will allow you to know others' thoughts and emotions.
In this moment Sheehan pulls his leg up so much that his foot is resting on the coach - which further signals his hesitancy and greater beta emotions.
A similar signal - also quite beta - is tucking one's hands beneath the thigh or "under the knee". In this setting, Ed Sheeran does not really want to tell us that, as a grown man, he bought a Lego set just for himself.
Now contrast Ed Sheeran with Matthew McConaughey - who is sitting in a "Figure Four" (projecting hyper-alpha feelings) with his fingers intertwined (impatience and critical evaluation). Now nuance further how each man's legs are folded - McConaughey's above of his other leg (alpha) - while Sheeran's crossed leg is beneath it's opposite (beta). We may indeed like both men, and they are each be excellent at their craft - yet one is dominant (and confident), while the other is acquiescing (and embarrassed).
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