Holley Mignosi on Social Cues to Use in Public Speaking | PoP 437

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Holley Mignosi on Social Cues to Use in Public Speaking | PoP 437

Do you have great content to share with your audience but you feel that you’re somehow lacking great stage presence? How can you use body language to come across as highly charismatic while doing public speaking? Is it possible to advance your speaking expertise so that you can increase your impact, influence, and income?

In this podcast episode, Joe Sanok speaks with Holley Mignosi about how she helps speakers master the art of body language and neuroscience of charismatic communication so that they can maximize their influence, eminence, and income.

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Meet Holley Mignosi

Holley Mignosi

Holley Mignosi is the CEO of Dynamic Dream Life Group, speaker, storyteller, and body language expert. She helps speakers and experts increase their influence and impact through the art of Hypnotic Body Language and the Neuroscience of Storytelling.

Holley is on a mission to help experts share their Signature Story and express their Life Purpose with Passion, Presence, and Power.

Visit Holley’s website and connect with her on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and her Facebook group.

In This Podcast


  • Forced to quit
  • Getting healthy and starting a business
  • Body language and social cues

Forced to quit

I believe that our adversity is really meant to be our victory.

Holley started her modeling and acting career at a very young age and by the time she was 21 she was living a good life. All of a sudden it took a turn when she did not meet the minimal standard for a celebrity runway coach. Having been publicly humiliated and feeling ashamed Holley decided that this would never happen to her again and she would do anything to ensure that.

She started her journey to learn about how she could get thinner. Even though she was exercising and doing all the right things, it just seemed that she couldn’t get any smaller. Holley was introduced to cocaine and the weight started falling off and she was once again in the spotlight. She used on and off for 10-12 years and after one night out partying, her 3-year-old daughter managed to get hold of her drugs but luckily did not ingest anything. It was at this moment that Holley decided to quit cold turkey – her marriage, the drugs, and her job.

Getting healthy and starting a business

Holley hired a personal trainer so that she could focus on taking care of her body and have goals to work towards. Her personal trainer recommended that she get certified as she was really good at this. Within 5 months, Holley opened up a studio with her personal trainer and together they started a business.

After 15 years in the fitness industry, Holley wanted to expand. Having observed speakers on stage, some with great content but not great stage presence, she felt a strong push towards being able to help these speakers create an impact in the way they presented themselves.

Body language and social cues

  • A simple hand gesture such as waving or opening your palms to the audience like a mini hug signals friendliness.
  • Look at someone’s feet while they are speaking to you – if they are pointing right at you then you have captivated their attention. If one foot is pointed somewhere else it means that their attention is split or they want to end the conversation but don’t know how to get out of it.
  • In a conversation, the leader influences the topic of conversation, the pace at which the conversation is going and when to laugh. When someone has a high status and leadership quality, other people want to match and mirror them.
  • The modern leader embraces their faults, this is called the pratfall effect.

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Books mentioned in this episode

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Meet Joe Sanok

private practice consultant

Joe Sanok helps counselors to create thriving practices that are the envy of other counselors. He has helped counselors to grow their businesses by 50-500% and is proud of all the private practice owners that are growing their income, influence, and impact on the world. Click here to explore consulting with Joe.

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Podcast Transcription

[JOE]: This is the Practice of the Practice podcast with Joe Sanok, session number 437. Everyone loves payday, but loving a payroll provider, that’s a little weird. Still, private practices across the country love running payroll with Gusto. Gusto automatically files and pays your taxes. It’s super easy to use and you can add benefits and management tools to help take care of your team and keep the business safe. It’s loyal, it’s modern, you might fall in love with yourself. Listeners get three months free when they run their first payroll. Try a demo and test it out at gusto.com/joe. It’s what I use. That’s gusto.com/joe.
Well, if you are new to this podcast, welcome. I am so glad that you are here. As you may or may not know, we have been launching quite a few podcasts recently. We have some that are all clinical about kind of helping you become a better person, help your clients become a better person, we also have some that are practical for your business. So around starting a group practice, a faith-based practice, scaling a practice, marketing a practice, and we have more coming with our Done For You services. So if you’re interested in having Done For You podcasting where we do everything except record, pretty much, head on over to practiceofthepractice.com/apply and you can apply to work with us, to have our sound team, our copywriting team, everyone support you in launching an amazing podcast.
But these awesome podcasts are all part of the Practice of the Practice podcast network, which means that we are all co-promoting each other. So, I want you to head on over to practiceofthepractice.com/network to discover some of these amazing podcasts. And these are podcasts that are making a genuine difference in the world. And again, that’s practiceofthepractice.com/network. You know, it’s interesting as we evaluate how to level up, how to grow, how to push ourselves. You know, usually, the answer to leveling up is right in front of your face. It was me talking to our highest-end clients, the people that have done individual consulting, mastermind groups, they’ve come to Slow Down School, all of those things and interviewing them saying, “What is it that you wish that we did here at Practice of the Practice?” And over and over they said, “We know that you know how to do it. We know that you know how to do email courses, you know how to engage people, how to grow an audience. You just do it for us and teach us how just show us your method.” And so, we started doing that in late 2019. And at the time of this recording, we have eight different podcasts that we are supporting launching. We are taking applications for the next cohort and it’s cool. It’s people that have private practices that are really getting to that next level.
Like you heard about Veronica. In January, I interviewed her. She has her Empowered and Unapologetic podcast. We’ve got the Bomb Mom Podcast Melissa is launching and she’s a fitness instructor from San Diego that just dives into all these really cool issues around fitness and being a mom and finding time to do the things that make you feel good while also that balancing act. Now we’ve got the Beta Male Revolution podcast we’re supporting with Brandy and Billy. They’re this amazing couple that is just out there kind of talking about beta males; instead of alpha males, beta males and have a great way of thinking about it. And then we have the Imperfect Thriving podcast that Kathryn launched and they’re just, she’s all about imperfect thriving outside of the role of being a mom or outside of the role of being a wife. And she really focuses kind of on Southern women and pushing back against the patriarchy down there. Just these amazing podcasts that we’ve been invited in to help support. And so, if you want to see about those or about any of the new Practice of the Practice podcasts, you’ve got to head over to practiceofthepractice.com/network. You’re going to find some new shows that you, I just know you’re going to love them because I love them. It’s a lot of fun to support these new friends of mine in what they’re doing.
So today we are continuing our speaker series and before I had said we were going to have three episodes, but actually we have one more bonus episode coming up. I actually just 10 minutes ago at the time of this recording recorded an interview that was about speaking. And so next week we’re going to be talking to Lori Ann and she’s going to be talking about how to get booked. And so, she actually focuses on helping people get booked at conferences. She goes through all sorts of things. So that’s going to be coming up just around the corner in a couple of days here. And so, yes, it’s super exciting to do all this stuff. I hope you hear it in my voice because we get to do this work of supporting people’s big messages and getting them out to the world and helping you in the meantime as well. Well, today we have Holley, Mignosi and I am so excited for you to hear what she has to say about kind of micro gestures and just all these really interesting things around public speaking and how people perceive you based on your gestures. So, without any further ado, here’s Holley.
Well, today on the Practice of the Practice podcast, we have Holley Mignosi. She’s a speaker, storyteller, and body, language expert. She helps speakers and experts to increase their influence and impact through the art of hypnotic body language and the neuroscience of storytelling. Holley is on a mission to help experts share their signature story and express their life purpose with passion, presence, and power. Holley, welcome to the Practice of the Practice podcast.
[HOLLEY]: Thank you, Joe. I’m so excited to be here.
[JOE]: Yes, yes. You know, hearing you talk about your expertise and your story and speaking, I’m so excited to have you as part of this kind of speaker series that we’re doing here on the Practice of the Practice podcast. Before we dive into that your story isn’t all kind of roses and sunshine. There were some rough patches before you kind of got into this life purpose work. Maybe take us back a bit and tell us where you’ve been.
[HOLLEY]: Yes, thank you for that Joe. I believe that our adversity is really meant to be our victory. And let me tell you, I’ve been through it. I have been through some rough patches, as you say, and it really all started in my modeling and acting career. I was very young. My very first show was when I was seven years old doing a fashion show for Macy’s, did a little bit on and off, and then as I was in my teens, I wanted to get back into it. By the time I was 21 I was loving life. I was modeling and acting by day, emceeing fashion shows and then at night I was a runway coach, image development coach, commercial film, television, and I was helping aspiring models and actors of all ages really break into the business. And it was so much fun. I felt really good about myself.
It was one of those early successes I guess you could say in life that not everybody gets. I felt like I was on point, I was living my passion, I was good at it. I was teaching, making a difference and I was making good money and I was only 21 and it was one of those moments where you go, “Oh gosh, could life get any better?” And then all of a sudden it took a turn and my boss, he pulled all of us runway coaches into a room and he announced that he was really going to take the company global, world domination, so to speak, and be the number one modeling and acting company in the world. And in order to do that we had to look like professional celebrity models and actors. And at that moment I knew I was in trouble because I didn’t meet the minimal standard for a celebrity runway coach, which is 5″9, 5″10. And I also was built a little different.
I wasn’t that thin willowy type of body frame. I was a little curvier, more athletic would be the kind way to say it. And my boss started pulling the runway coaches up one by one and he measured us publicly with a measuring tape. He measured our bust, our waist, and our hips in front of our peers, in front of our coworkers. And I know some people listening are probably cringing right now because in this day and age that is not okay. But back then, you know, this is in the early nineties it was just how we did it in the industry. And the first runway coach went up on the runway and he measured her and she was perfect. Her measurements were absolutely perfect. And then the second model went up and she was perfect and then he called me and my bust and my waist were okay, but my hips were not one, not two, not three, but four inches too big.
And to you and I, that may not seem like a lot, but in the modeling industry, that’s a whole size or two, larger than what they want you to be. And my boss looked at me, pointed at my hips, turned on the rest of my coworkers and said, “If any of you have this problem, you better fix it or you’re fired. This is unacceptable.” And I was publicly humiliated. I felt instant shame. Now, remember I’m 21 and I felt like I was the bad seed of the bunch. I felt like everyone else was perfect in their appearance where appearance is a very high value in that industry and I was the ugly duckling. I decided at that moment, what many people do in a moment of pain, this will never happen to me again, ever.
I will do anything I can to make sure that I am not in this kind of public humiliation. So, I started exercising, jogging, reducing my calories, learning about how, you know, how could I get thinner? And I just couldn’t. I was already a size between a four and a six. I was a five, eight. I was between a four and a six; by most standards is very lean and healthy and I just couldn’t get my body any smaller no matter what I did until at a party, someone gave me a little white bag of white powder and she said, here, try this. And it was cocaine. And you know what Joe? It worked like a charm.
[JOE]: Wow.
[HOLLEY]: All of a sudden, several inches came off and when I walked down the hallway at work and I started getting compliments and accolades. “Hey, Holley looking good.” And my boss would say, “Nice new sleek physique girl. Looking good.” And all of a sudden, I felt like I was accepted. I was no longer the bad seed and I was loved basically by my peers. But inside I was just horrified. I knew I was a fraud. I knew if I stopped, I would continue to gain weight and I had headaches, heart palpitations, sleepless nights, anxiety attacks. Not to mention, “Oh my God, I don’t want anyone to find out.” This was my dirty little secret and I used on and off for 10 years. That’s all, maybe even 12 years, 10, 12 years until the moment that it really got dangerous. I got married and I got pregnant. I was able to completely quit while I was pregnant but by the time my daughter was two or three years old, there were some problems in the marriage.
I knew we weren’t right for each other and he and I started using again together. We started using cocaine, ecstasy on the weekends and then I started sneaking it in and eventually during the week and then boom, I started back up again. One day we went out partying all night, came home and as I kind of lumbered my way through the front door, there was our blonde-haired, blue-eyed ball of sunshine sitting on the floor. We had a live-in nanny who had taken care of her and would stay with us and you know, took her out for a while we were out partying and our daughter looked at us and she was only three at the time. And she said, “Mommy, daddy, play with me. Where were you? I missed you.” And my husband looked at me and said, “I’m going to bed,” and half out of guilt and half out of love, I said, “Okay, I’ll play with you.”
And so, we sat down and played together and she had a little pink Tutu on and we played, you know, tea party. And then I got really thirsty and I went to the kitchen and when I came back, she wasn’t there. So, I went to the bedroom and she wasn’t there, went to her bathroom, she wasn’t there. And I saw a little crack in the door and I could see that our door was open just a few inches. And you know that like kind of motherly instinct or fatherly instinct or just general intuition where you know something’s not right and I just knew something was wrong. I opened up the door and there she was on her bedroom floor holding my drugs in her hands. I rushed to her and my heart dropped into my stomach and I rushed and I looked in her mouth, looked at the bags and she hadn’t ingested anything.
Thank God I had gotten there just at the right time, but she was investigating what is this? And all of a sudden, I grabbed it and I cleared it away from her space and it was like this divine download. I saw my life kind of in her life flash before my eyes. And I had these questions suddenly go into my mind, “What if I didn’t get here in time? What if she had ingested something? What if I had to call the police? What if the police called CPS? What if she was taken away from us because we were both using? And then what if she went to foster care?” And then all of a sudden, I saw this vision of her in the future at my age, like me. What if she turned out like me? And I didn’t like the answers to any of those questions. So, I decided in that moment, three things, I need to quit my job, I need to quit my marriage, and I need to quit drugs, and I have no idea how. And I needed to do it all at the same time.
[JOE]: Oh my gosh. I knew you had been through significant things, but what a hard way to learn that you have to make changes.
[HOLLEY]: For me, I think that was the only way because I tried to quit. I wanted to quit on my own, but I couldn’t do it for me. But I could do it for her. And in knowing that there was the possibility that she could end up following in my footsteps, I just couldn’t let that happen or that she could get into our stash and overdose. I just knew that that was something that I just couldn’t let happen. So, I did it for her. Yes.
[JOE]: So, what was helpful during that time to move away from that life?
[HOLLEY]: Yes, thank you for that question. I would have to say it’s a propulsion system of really keeping close to my heart and mind the absolute pain if I didn’t succeed. Like really, it might sound kind of strange, but I would keep that really, that image really close in my mind. “If I don’t do this, I’m going to lose my daughter. Either she may die because she got into my stuff or she could be taken away from me.” So by simultaneously also creating the image and the pictures and the ideas and kind of a kind of mental hypnosis, if you will, that I would give this visualization with myself of how my life could be when I succeed, the hope of what my life could be, being free from this, being in a job I loved. I didn’t know what that would be at that time. I had no clue, no clue, because I lived my whole life in the modeling and acting industry. I truly did not know what was in front of me, but I knew that I had to jump and I prayed, truly prayed for God to just give me the wings to fly and I knew if I failed, I would just try again.
So, I got into health and fitness because I still wanted to remain healthy and the cravings, Joe, nobody knew I was quitting. I didn’t go to AA or NAA. I didn’t even know any existed, although I certainly qualified to be in it, but I didn’t know it existed and I had so much shame. I didn’t want anyone to know. And I started, I filed for divorce and I certainly didn’t want anyone to know I was using because what if they drug tested? I just had to do it all on my own. So, I hired a personal trainer and I know that might sound crazy, but I needed someone to inspire me, to motivate me, to keep me on track. I didn’t know that I could get some kind of counseling. I probably qualified for some kind of free counseling even, but I didn’t know I qualified and I didn’t know how to do it.
So, the only thing I could think of was to hire a trainer to get my mind right, to help me take care of my body and give me goals. I was very goal-oriented. That’s my personality. So I started to see a trainer twice a week and for the first time he started giving me compliments; not for being skinny but for being strong and not for being beautiful, but for really taking care of my inner beauty, my mind, my body, and to take care of myself and my daughter. And he didn’t know what I was going through. He didn’t know that I was using, but he probably, I’m guessing had to sense. And I just stayed on that track and eventually he said, “You’re kind of good at this working out thing.” Because that was one of the things I was trying to do to lose the weight before. “Why don’t you be a personal trainer? Why don’t you get certified?”
And I thought, “You know what? I could do that because I know how to set goals, I know how to help people lose weight and feel good about themselves, I know a lot about self-confidence and self-esteem. I’m going to do that.” So, within four months I had, I don’t know, four or five certifications and within five months, four to five months, my trainer and I opened up a personal training studio together. We opened up our own business.
[JOE]: So how did you go from that to doing the public speaking and then training public speakers. Like, what’s that jump? Because I definitely, I would love to stay on your story because it’s so compelling, but I know that also you have so much value to give around public speaking and all of that. How did you make that jump from doing personal training to then training speakers?
[HOLLEY]: Well, after 15 years in the fitness industry, I wanted to expand and what I thought I was going to do, Joe, I thought I’m going to go speak about health and fitness and I’m going to speak to audiences, I have some stage work. I know how to use the stage; I know how to do some public speaking. I’m going to combine my past with my present skills and I’m going to go speak and help people with health and fitness and weight loss. And that’s what I thought I was going to do. So, I got back into the speaking industry, hired some mentors on speaking, started to go to seminars and started watching speakers and I started seeing two things. I saw speakers who were dynamic and amazing on stage and their content was, “Eeh, okay.” But because they were so dynamic and they had these great stage presences, they were just wowing the audience.
And then I saw speakers that had absolutely amazing content but no stage skills. And I thought, “Gosh if they would just use their shoulders like this, work the stage, project their voice, make some eye contact, and really get excited about their content and use some animation, make their stories come alive.” I thought if I could just show them how to do that, they could really have some impact with their message. And I started to feel this pivot like, “Wow, I’m really passionate about speakers now. Gosh, I think those are the people I’m supposed to help.” And at first, I denied it like, “Oh no. Who am I to do that? And then I started really feeling the call. So, then I just made that pivot, made that jump and said, “Okay, I’m going to start helping speakers. I’m going to take everything I’ve learned from modeling and acting and stage and stage presence. First impressions. What do I love? I love storytelling and I’m pretty good with body language. So, I’m going to marry those two together and I’m going to start helping experts.”
[JOE]: Wow. We’ll take us through some of the body language things of speaking. One thing that I heard, I don’t remember who I heard it from, and you can tell me if I’m wrong is that when you first come on stage, if you show your hands, like in a wave or something like that, that people’s defenses go down. Because intuitively, because of evolution, we think people have weapons. And so, if we don’t see their hands, then we’re on edge versus if we show our hands.
[HOLLEY]: You are right on, Joe. Ding, ding, ding point for you. [crosstalk] That was perfect. You nailed that. Absolutely. Through evolution, you know, back in the old days when we were caveman and cavewoman and if we came upon someone then we didn’t know they were part of our tribe, the first thing that we’re going to think are they friend or foe, are they here to harm us or are they here to help us and do they have a weapon? You’re absolutely right. So the simple hand gesture of waving or opening your palms to the audience, almost like a mini hug, like you kind of open like hello and you open your arms in a wide gesture, that says to our unconscious reptilian brain, that caveman brain, “Look, I’m here, I’m here with open arms. I have no weapons. I am a friend.
[JOE]: Yes. So, what, maybe give us some other points or things to think of when doing public speaking
[HOLLEY]: Yes, definitely. Well, I have a fun game if you’re up for it. I have some fun questions for you and for the audience if you are listening and it’s all about body language. So, if I can, I’d love to ask you a question. I’ll give you a couple of answers and then you tell me which one sounds like it’s the right one. Are you ready? Okay.
[JOE]: I’m in. Okay, let’s do it [crosstalk]
[HOLLEY]: I would say your first impression because remember this is kind of intuitive. Think about caveman days. What would be the most advantageous way for me to go about this? And then some of them will be kind of really fun.
[JOE]: Okay.
[HOLLEY]: Okay, ready? Okay, my first question on body language just to lay some foundation is who do you think is better at reading body language? Men or women?
[JOE]: Oh, man, I feel like this is a setup. I would, my wife is so intuitive, so I’m going to go with women.
[HOLLEY]: Ding, ding, ding. Yes, you are correct. That is right. We find that women are more intuitive as you said, with reading body language. And there was even an experiment done where they took two groups of people, men, and women, connected their brains, watched how their brains were firing and showed them body language and said, “Okay, interpret this.” And what they found was that when men are interpreting body language, their brains are lighting up in eight different areas. When women’s brains are reading body language, their brains are lighting up in 15 different areas, twice as many areas to read the subtleties. So why is that? Well, we think it’s how we evolve through evolution as you said that as women and men, men would go out and hunt and they might use larger hand movements to gesture, “Hey go over here. Hey, go over there.” While women would stay in the village in closer proximity to one another and we might be sewing, grinding food or making some leather, whatever we’re doing, we’re closer together. And there would be one alpha female who might give subtle gestures smaller and say, “Okay, you do this, you go over here, this is good, this is not good.” So, we learn to read these subtleties through our evolution more so than men.
[JOE]: When you even just think of even more modern times in, you know, say the last thousand years women, you know, until recently, just from a physical standpoint that you know, a man, it might be able to get his way out just through physicality whereas women have been subjected to so many horrific things that for them to quickly figure out who’s safe, who is trustworthy, there’s a competitive advantage to that, to the women that were able to figure that out quickly.
[HOLLEY]: All right, our next question is in a group of people talking, imagine you’re in a business meeting or a networking meeting, what body part points to the leader of the group or the alpha of the group? I have three options for you. Is it the eyes, is it the heart, or is it the feet?
[JOE]: Oh, I was thinking hips, so I think the heart would be, oh, but, oh I’m going to go with heart, but I think it might be feet, but, no I’m going to go with feet because I think that seems like a wild card. I’ll go feet.
[HOLLEY]: Ding, ding, ding. Yes, you got it right.
[JOE]: Oh, I had to think through that because I thought the heart because I was thinking like maybe your hips might be towards them or something. But yes, your feet. Okay.
[HOLLEY]: It is feet and this is why it goes back again to our caveman days, that reptilian brain, back in the day when we were foraging for berries, our feet would be pointing towards the thing. We’re focused on the berries. But then if we heard a loud sound or an animal in the bushes or a [inaudible 00:25:44] flying over, we would think, okay, I may need to make a run for it. And so, one foot might be pointed at the berries, but the other one would be pointed in a direction we might need to go. So how you can use this in a modern-day sense is if you’re having a conversation with someone, you can casually look down at the feet or even use your peripheral vision and notice where are their feet pointing. If they’re pointing right at you, Joe, then you have captivated their attention.
Now if one foot is pointed in the other direction, wherever that foot is pointed, that’s where they actually want to go. So, either one of two things, something over there has their attention and they actually have split attention or they really want out of the conversation and they don’t know how to get out of it.
[JOE]: Oh, Ninja.
[HOLLEY]: Yes, yes.
[JOE]: I love that. So, I’m going to look at people’s feet now.
[HOLLEY]: That’s right. And it’s really fun to watch when other people are talking like, “Oh, that person wants out of the conversation.”
[JOE]: Yes.
[HOLLEY]: Yes, but it’s so nice and you can lead right into it and still have rapport. Like, “Oh, by the way, do you need to go?” I mean, you can create a very gentle, helpful exit for them. And usually, people really appreciate and they think, “Wow, you’re so in tune with me. You knew exactly what I was thinking even though I didn’t say it.”
[JOE]: Yes, you know, as I think about that, something that I now intuitively do but used to kind of intentionally do is when I’m in those conversations, oftentimes they become a closed circle, which to me is really hard for people that aren’t in the circle because you don’t want to be like, “Scoot over people.” So, I always try to kind of pivot to make an opening for people so that there’s like an opening so they all feel welcome. So, there’s that and then also, in those like networking situations, I used to get trapped at like the front door and just kind of seeing people there. But I found, I don’t know if you found this, but if you’re right where people are after they get their drink, it seems like that’s when people are most kind of calm and ready to have a conversation versus, you know, wanting to go get a drink or get a piece of food. It’s like, by the time they’re getting a drink, they’re ready to talk versus scanning the room right when they walk in it
[HOLLEY]: You’re absolutely right. One of the two worst places to stand is the entrance and the bathroom. People don’t want to talk. [crosstalk].
[JOE]: “Get out of my way.”
[HOLLEY]: Exactly. and I have found that the two best places to stand are right around the drink or food area. People tend to be more relaxed or by the host. And here’s a little bonus tip for everyone listening. After you say hello to the host, you can ask them to introduce you to someone. Like if there’s a particular partner, like a business partner you’d like to be introduced to or, “Hey, if you know someone who is looking for this, I’ll be right over here. I’d be happy to assist them with that.” And then you stand about 10 to 20 feet eyes distance from that host so you’re actually top of mind for the host to introduce you to people.
[JOE]: Oh, that’s such a good tip. I wouldn’t have articulated it that way, but we were at a fundraising event and this guy that had been in a campaign recently, we’re talking to him and kind of walked away and we just got chatting to someone else. And then about five minutes later he introduced us to someone from the house of representatives and was like, “I want you to meet this person and, “Oh, Joe and Christina are big advocates in this area.” And it was like, “Whoa, look at that.”
[HOLLEY]: Yes. Well, you just initiated something called proximity. And proximity is an influence technique. So, we have different kinds of, we’re getting a little off body language, but it’s still very helpful for influence. So, proximity, we have different kinds of influence. We can have proximity where it’s higher, like a hierarchy where above someone, or equal to someone or we’re below someone in status or knowledge or whatever the case may be. But there’s also proximity as in how close distance-wise are we from someone; if we’re standing really close to them, if we give them a touch on the shoulder or the arm, there’s a certain level of influence versus really far apart. So, you initiated that influence by being close.
[JOE]: Little did I know.
[HOLLEY]: You’re so smart.
[JOE]: All right, so what’s the next question? How many are they in total, just so I pace us?
[HOLLEY]: Five.
[JOE]: Five. Okay. Number three.
[HOLLEY]: We’re in number three. Three of five. All right. Here we go. In a conversation, what does the leader or the alpha influence, is it the topic of the conversation, the pace at which the conversation is going, when to laugh or D all the above.
[JOE]: Oh, I was between B and C, but now that it gets to do D, I’m going to go D.
[HOLLEY]: Yes, ding ding ding you got it. It’s all the above. Absolutely. Because our nervous systems want to connect, we naturally start doing something called matching and mirroring when we’re in rapport with someone and when someone has a high status or a leadership quality, other people want to match and mirror them. So, when they change the subject, we kind of flow with it. When they laugh, we kind of ha ha ha, we laugh too. Even if we don’t think it’s funny. We just naturally do it. Yes, exactly. To be part of the group to make sure that their safety, because there is safety in numbers. It’s something that we naturally do. So, it’s kind of fun to observe people at a networking meeting or business meeting and watch that occur.
[JOE]: Yes, I remember in, I think it was Storyteller’s Secret by Carmen Gallo, and we’ll put a link to that in the show notes. He was talking about neuro mirroring, that when someone’s telling a story, the part of their brain that lights up is the same part of the brain as the person hearing this story. And so, there’s this emotional connection between storyteller and listener.
[HOLLEY]: Absolutely. You’re absolutely correct. The mirror neurons.
[JOE]: Yes.
[HOLLEY]: Yes.
[JOE]: Awesome. Question number four.
[HOLLEY]: Number four. Here we go. Which of the following statements is true? Women can have varying degrees of alpha-ism in different situations or B, women have varying degrees of alpha-ism in groups, or a woman is alpha, her level of alpha-ism is the same all the time.
[JOE]: I don’t think it’s the same all the time. I think we all probably have different levels, so I’m going to go with, so what was A and B again?
[HOLLEY]: A is that we have varying degrees of alpha-ism in different situations or is it connected to groups, like who the person that we’re with? Those are your two answers for your two options.
[JOE]: They seem similar, but I’m going to go with B. I think the group may be influenced more? No? What is it?
[HOLLEY]: It’s A.
[JOE]: It’s A. Okay, —
[HOLLEY]: Actually, you know what I would say it’s a little bit of both. It’s if you say different situations, the situation includes the people that are there.
[JOE]: So, the group thing narrows it down.
[HOLLEY]: Kind of narrows it down [crosstalk. You could be an alpha at work, but not at home. You could be an alpha with a group of people in that situation, or for example, you’re the host here, so you would be the natural leader here. Even if I have a high degree of alpha-ism in my own personality, it would be natural for me to let you lead.
[JOE]: All right. So, I’m getting 75% right now?
[HOLLEY]: You’re doing really good.
[JOE]: It’s 80% hopefully.
[HOLLEY]: All right, here we go. Last one. Number five. Does the modern leader or alpha embrace their faults or hide them?
[JOE]: Oh, I would hope they would embrace them.
[HOLLEY]: Absolutely. Ding, ding, ding. You got that absolutely correct. It’s called the pratfall effect. There’s a name for it. And it was an interesting study done where they took two groups of people, just regular people, and they had them watch one of those people that do the demonstrations like at Costco or something where they’re mixing in a blender and they’re mixing things up and creating these yummy drinks or soups or whatever, and they had the audience rate the presenter. Now the presenters were both actresses and one actress, they said, “We want you to do it perfectly. Don’t make any mistakes, do it just like this. All your lines are correct, the juice is perfect, all that.” And then the second actress, they said, “We want you to spill. We want you to spill the juice, we want you to fumble. We want you to make some mistakes and just go with it.” And then they asked the audience, who would you prefer? Who do you think has the highest scores in the areas of likability? Who would you trust? Who would you buy from? And they decided that it was actually the person who made mistakes. Because what we believe is that if someone can embrace their own faults and share them, if we make a mistake, it means that they’re going to be able to embrace ours as well.
[JOE]: Yes. That kind of perfect person that we can’t attain versus, oh, she’s a lot like me and that’s awesome. Yes, I even think about when I have, as I’ve given myself more permission to screw up and I let my team know that, it’s just made it flow so much easier that people are willing to take risks and they know that if it screws up all of a sudden, you know, “Okay, we got some information from that. Let’s learn from it and move on.” Even when you know, like Alison or Whitney or one of our consultants will say, “Hey Joe, can we do this?” I’ll say, “If you don’t hear from me about that within a day, go ahead and text me because I don’t want you to think that I don’t care. But if it falls off the conveyor belt, then let me know.”
So just own those mistakes. Even in our podcast editing, you know, I have people that will say, “Can I hear it and then review it and then edit it?” I’m just like, “No, that is just not worth the time to do all of that. If we have a major screw up, we’ll write it down, but for the most part, we’re not going to highly edit it because we want it to be personalized and keep the conversation.”
[HOLLEY]: Yes, I love that. And how we can use this in conversation, like for example, in my family, in my personal family, we kind of have a rule that when we’re talking with each other, it might get a little messy. But know that we’re all committed to cleaning it up. Like I may not say things perfectly, it may not come out just right, I don’t know how to say this that it sounds so eloquent, but this is what I’m feeling and this is what I’m thinking and just know that we’re all committed to making it right.
[JOE]: Oh, that’s awesome.
[JOE]: Well, Holley, the last question I always ask is, if every private practitioner in the world were listening right now, what would you want them to know?
[HOLLEY]: Follow your dreams, keep doing what you’re doing, follow your heart, know that your prayers are heard and answered and just keep going. Follow your dreams.
[JOE]: Oh, awesome. Well, Holley, I know that you have kind of awesome giveaway about kind of gestures and tell us a little bit about that. I’m so excited for people to connect with you and to hear more about this free giveaway you’re giving.
[HOLLEY]: Thank you, Joe. It’s really fun. It’s really simple. It’s a check-off list of hand gestures that you can use to be highly charismatic or influential. So, if you have a talk coming up, you can add these hand gestures into your talk to be more animated, to be more captivating, to make sure that your audience remembers you, to add some sizzle and spice to your storytelling. And there are 15 of the hottest hand gestures that you can use. Now you can also use this just in conversation and then as a bonus there are also five hand gestures to never use on stage. So, I got you covered in both areas.
[JOE]: I want to download it just for those. Awesome. What’s the best way for them to get that?
[HOLLEY]: And that’s, you’re going to go to Holley menyosi.com/hot15. And that’s Holley with an E Y and Mignosi, M I G N O S I.com forward slash hot 15.
[JOE]: Awesome. And we’ll have a link to that in the show notes. Thank you so much, Holley, for being on the Practice of the Practice podcast.
[HOLLEY]: It was such a pleasure. You’re amazing Joe. I love what you do and, I told you offline, but I’ll also say it and give you a nice compliment online. I love your voice quality. It’s really good and I love to listen to your show, so I love what you do. Thank you for all that you do.
[JOE]: Thank you so much, Holley.
[HOLLEY]: You’re welcome. My pleasure.
[JOE]: Well, this series of speaking has been awesome and it also just puts a spotlight on an area that many of us don’t put enough time into and that’s public speaking and it could be locally, it could be when we’re talking to friends, it could be pushing yourself to try to get a TEDx Talk. There are so many ways that you can get your message out there to amplify what you know and the world needs to hear, and it also helps your bottom line financially; to have more income, to have more innovation, to have more influence and have more impact. Those are four things that we hold dear here at Practice of the Practice.
We also want to thank Gusto. Gusto has amazing payroll solutions. It’s what I use for my business. It’s helped me in regards to my taxes, staying connected to my numbers and making sure that I do it right and it’s so much cheaper than when I had my accountant do all of my payrolls. So, I head on over to gusto.com/joe. You can get three months for free. They are amazing. They’re sponsors of this podcast and we couldn’t do this show without them.
Thank you so much for letting me into your ears and into your brain. Have an amazing day. Special thanks to the band Silence is Sexy for your intro music. We really like it and this podcast is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is given with the understanding that neither the host, the publisher, or the guests are rendering legal, accounting, clinical, or other professional information. If you want a professional, you should find one.