Trust may be your best weapon when dealing with other people. If everyone on planet Earth could trust you like your Mother, Father, Brother, Sister or even best friend does, then this would give you a huge advantage.

Over time, it’s easy to build trust, just think about Bill Gates or Elon Musk, people buy their companies products because they trust in their results and believe that they know them. This is also why celebrities are a powerful tool for sales because people know their face, work and life, making them think they actually know them.

But what about when people have never met you? They have no predisposed opinion of you, they may have limited amounts of information about your history and this is the first time they’re seeing your face.

In this situation they’re going to trust their instincts. Body language experts tell us that we have roughly 21 seconds to make a first impression. People will believe they have you completely figured out within this brief encounter, so what can you do to make sure they trust you?


Truth Plane

Body language expert Mark Bowden has worked on this exact issue. He’s invented something called the Truth Plane. The Truth Plane uses positional body language to signify a certain meaning.

When someone is angry, they’re going to be more expressive, their hands will be high, they will make quick and erratic movements with unpredictable angles. This frightens people and puts us on edge, this is why people who are over expressive and a bit boisterous take some time to get use to. This is called the passion plane.

When someone is being untrustworthy, they’re likely to move slowly, no sudden movements, hands hidden and so on. Humans are hyper-aware to this type of behavior due to fear of danger, this is why police are able to spot a criminal in a crowd of people, he’s the one looking sheepish.

When someone is being lazy and uninterested you’ll find their hands down low, almost like they’re sagging under their own weight. This is called the grotesque plane.

If you want to be assertive without being too aggressive, then having your hands around your chest region works extremely well. But it still doesn’t guarantee trust due to some individuals being afraid of authority and alpha male figures.

In order to gain trust you must keep your hands and gestures around the naval area, or the belly area. Here’s Mark showing you the Truth Plane below.

truth-plane truth-plane-2

LI-CRIBBMAY28 05/23/11 - TORONTO, ONTARIO - Mark Bowden, a communications expert. Bowden consuls people on body language. (RICK MADONIK/TORONTO STAR)


Why This Works

The Truth Plane displays your hands to whoever you’re talking to, it also attracts attention to the naval area where all of your vital organs are and this signals trust. You’re also balanced, people are attracted to symmetry and this posture gives us perfect symmetry.

World Leaders

If you look at world leaders you will see that they also use the Truth Plane. World leaders need trust in order to keep everyone calm and keep order around the world. Take a look at some of the world leaders below and notice how they’re stood/gesturing.



This may also be why people don’t trust Donald Trump, Donald’s gestures are in the passion plane, which would make sense since his aim is to excite, motivate and generally arouse people rather than gain trust.

Real estate mogul Donald Trump announces his bid for the presidency in the 2016 presidential race during an event at the Trump Tower on the Fifth Avenue in New York City on June 16, 2015. Trump, one of America's most flamboyant and outspoken billionaires, threw his hat into the race Tuesday for the White House, promising to make America great again. The 69-year-old long-shot candidate ridiculed the country's current crop of politicians and vowed to take on the growing might of China in a speech launching his run for the presidency in 2016. "I am officially running for president of the United States and we are going to make our country great again," he said from a podium bedecked in US flags at Trump Tower on New York's Fifth Avenue. The tycoon strode onto the stage after sailing down an escalator to the strains of "Rockin' In The Free World" by Canadian singer Neil Young after being introduced by daughter Ivanka. His announcement follows years of speculation that the man known to millions as the bouffant-haired host of American reality TV game show "The Apprentice" would one day enter politics. Trump identifies himself as a Republican, and has supported Republican candidates in the past. But in his announcement speech he did not explicitly say if he was running for the party's nomination or as an independent.AFP PHOTO/ KENA BETANCUR        (Photo credit should read KENA BETANCUR/AFP/Getty Images)



So if trust is what you’re after, then where you place your hands/where you gesture from could be your most important weapon.

Trying too hard to get your point across is where most people go wrong. Look at any amateur speaker and you’ll see passionate expressions such as slamming hands down, waving hands around and high shoulder shrugging.

This passion and desire to get a point across ends up having a negative effect. If you want to communicate your point, get someone on-board with an idea or to simply convince them, then your trust is going to be vital. Use the Truth Plane to your advantage, be like the world leaders and make yourself more trustworthy.