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Interview with Cynthia Erlichman (psychologist)

This is an interview that I conducted with a psychologist.  She works with trauma cases and relies on body language often to help "open" up the trauma victims. I plan on using this interview for parts of my CRIME subtopic.

Lizzie shumaker's insight:

LIVE Interview with Cynthia Erlichman  2/3/2013 5:43:46 PM

 

Lizzie:   While working with trauma victims, are there any body language cues that you look for in order for them to open up?

Cynthia:  So the way that I guess I would explain, when you say cues and how their behavior, how they respond in ways to help them, one of the biggest things that I look for are from a, let me think of the best way to answer how you’re asking that.  So, when somebody has been through extreme abuse, one of the things that’s very difficult, their body themselves, is that they’re traumatized.  So, arms folded and the way that they cross their legs or the way that they sit is usually very reflective of allowing somebody to let any kind of communication in.  SO one of the things that is very important from the stand point of allowing deep communication is helping them recognize that.  You know, a person opening themselves up to another from their body standpoint is usually key before their verbal side will open.   So bringing their awareness to help shut off how they are in a dialogue, is key to getting them to emotionally open up.

 

Lizzie:  Okay, and how about when they begin to start opening up, is their tone of voice like is there a specific way that they speak?

Cynthia:  Um, yes.  I would say that very categoric.  Um when somebody has been through any kind of trauma, um speaking two dimensionally and speaking shallow from their lungs versus their diaphragm area and their stomach, because there’s an anxiety filled base when they start to talk.   So a lot of times, real shallow breathing creates real soft communication and it can also be a dissociative way of speaking.  If somebody talks with more strength, and more power, it’s usually speaking from their stomach area, versus their lungs.

Lizzie:  Have you done any psychology regarding crime?  If so what type of movements or expressions show if a person is not telling the truth?

Cynthia:  When you say involving crimes, do you mean from the standpoint of the person that’s committed the crime, or have I helped, cause I’ve worked on the therapeutic side of crime from the victim.  Do you mean from the victimizer, like somebody that has done and committed a crime?

Lizzie:  Yeah, the person that’s committed the crime.

Cynthia:  Um, I have only from the interrogation side of when they’re already known to have committed the crime.  So, let’s say this way, I’ve worked with a lot of rapes, and violence, and abuse, but it’s usually when they have already been apprehended.  Police stationed, so it’s already known that they’ve committed a crime. Or when people are behind the bars as far is in jail.  I have worked a lot with prosecuted criminals.  Because I try to work with them from a rehabilitation standpoint.  I don’t know if I can answer that from a forensic piece, where I think you’re looking for an interrogation standpoint.  I’ve not really worked with um criminals that way; I’ve only worked with them when they are, when it’s already known that they’ve committed a crime or when they’re behind bars already. 

 

Lizzie:  Okay so there’s no like, body language in terms of them hiding anything because its already out there?

Cynthia:  Well, my answer to that would be absolutely.  Um there is no question that the ability to recognize and read from the standpoint of how they interpret.  You know for example, when somebody takes a polygraph test, and you watch the cues from the neurologistics of that standpoint, and their impulses, their body language responds very similar to how the dishonesty is there.  Unfortunately, I’ve not personally ever spoken or interrogated anybody that way, so my answer I guess would be two parts.  I guess there is no question it’s there; I’ve not personally had experience with it.  So I’d hate to give basis of foundation when it’s not my personal interpretation.

 

Lizzie:   As a psychologist, do you make a point to use body language?  (I hate to use the word manipulation, but more of controlling the behavior or thoughts of the victim by purposely displaying concerned or open body language)

Cynthia:  Oh absolutely, and you know what I think would probably be a better description than manipulation is almost a mimicking.  There is a term it’s called kinesthetic body relating.  And what that means is you trying to mirror and match a comfort level with somebody you try to put your body, your body language, and your body positioning in a way that’s very similar to the person that you’re in front of.  And by allowing that to happen, it brings comfort to how the person’s reactions are.  So and that happens with just not body movements, but also tone of voice, personality, things like that.  It’s bringing comfort to the person that you’re working with.  The kinesthetic belief is that when your body takes on an energetic component, it’s met in the other person in a way that brings them comfort and safety.  So, it’s almost a mirror effect.  It’s more felt that way, than let’s say manipulating.  You’re allowing yourself to take on a very conscious connection to the person that you’re talking to and then they see themselves in so they feel very safe in that.

 

Lizzie:   I know that you’re the founder of the “Women’s Sunshine Foundation”.  During presentations or speaking to a group, do you have any, um, recommended ways of coming off as confident or a powerful figure?

Cynthia:  Just speak from the heart.  Always.  And speak from a genuine place.  I think the thing that always comes into play when you speak from a psychology stand point from a promise standpoint, or when your personal story or the story of those you’re speaking to are such a significantly trauma filled place the way that you can always put yourself in a position of support from those that you’re trying to speak to are to speak from a real genuine place and an authentic place.   And so when I address a room, or when I address an audience that I know are affected by that type of experience, allowing me to speak from the heart, is how it’s really engaged in communication standpoint.  I don’t speak about the group, I speak to the group.  And I speak from a very raw place.  True experience and true personal accounts, are where most people relate to and relate from.  And I think while that can also be seen as a lot of emotion in a room, for most people find their deepest level of connection.  I would say that on any regard, actually, quite honestly.  When you speak and address from a place of your own self and your own experience, that’s always what’s going to capture a room the best.  Even if it’s a topic that you don’t understand fully, I mean we’ve all been there.  You’re in high school, I’m sure you can relate.  To speak about something.  If you believe in what you’re speaking about and you put truth and honesty in it, content takes second to the heart that’s delivering it.  I think you can completely understand that statement.  That’s certainly the basis of any therapeutic practice.  My heart being present to somebody is volumes above what I say to the person it’s who I am to the person.  That’s where it all stems from.

Lizzie:  That’s a good explanation

Cynthia:  Absolutely.   And that’s the way I think if life were to be defined by something in any capacity of any career, who you are is volumes above what you know.  Absolutely, any day.  We’ve all been in a room with somebody and hear them speak, and can capture us usually is not just what they know, it’s how it’s delivered.  Absolutely.

 

Lizzie:  Okay, and when you said how it’s delivered, are there any like, body movements that you do to come off as a power figure?

 

Cynthia:  When you speak on the stage, or when you speak in front of a room, or when you even speak one on one, I think one of the things that is always defined for me personally is opening my heart and my soul to a place of delivery.  And when I actually concentrate I feel my own body language do is the thoughts that say “please allow me to give everything of myself that’s gonna touch every person in front of me in a way that is best meant for them”.  And so when you speak from, I was saying this before when we were talking about a victim, when you open your heart, and you speak from your core, that delivery is absolutely felt by every person in the room.  Power comes from within, so it’s not necessarily the abrasiveness and the aggressiveness, it’s the genuineness, absolutely, every time.  The most soft spoken person can come across. Look at somebody like Gondi.  A figure like a Gondi type personality.  They can level a room with the power they, and that’s not a person that speaks in an accelerated volume, they speak from a place, of core-driven passion.  It’s the passion of what you’re speaking about, that’s what gives the strength to the room.

 

Lizzie:  While you’re not working, foresay like your just out in public or anywhere, can you ever tell if someone has experienced trauma, just by studying like their voice, or their body language or expressions?

 

Cynthia:  Yes.  I can certainly.  When I interact with somebody, there is.  When somebody has been wounded, and this is for me personally.  When somebody has been wounded, and they have been affected in a way that it shattering of the soul, the amount of energy that can come from that gives the ability to be able to see and feel that depth.  Because my heart for me personally lives very open to the work that I’m devoted to.  So the connectivness  life seems to have the ability.  When we walk through life genuine and driven, the work that we commit to for me personally, I seem to be able to connect to that in a way that even when the emotion of the words, are spoken differently, The soul seems to bleed that in a way.  That there’s a known when there’s been that kind of abuse and that kind of trauma.  Um people’s ability to keep that hidden from themselves actually can have a less ability to keep that hidden from the world around them.  It’s very powerful when you can meet somebody who you know has been affected, yet they don’t have to say a word.  Body language in a frailty, and in a victimized place, there’s an armor that they think they’re putting up, but in reality, its seen very differently by somebody who can understand that and identify that.  I think most people, if you have a specialty, for me it’s certainly the world that I breathe in  and I think a lot of people it’s what they do every day, they become in touch with the cues that they see in somebody and so I’m sure that they’re similar to other careers.

 

Lizzie:  Yeah, like they can pick up on things like outside their job.

 

Cynthia:  Yeah, Absolutely, I just happen to have it in a realm of very extreme human emotions. So for me I’m very in touch with people’s feelings and who they are.

 

Lizzie:  Okay well that’s all the questions I have right now.  I might want to do another interview later on sometime...

Cynthia:  Oh honey, absolutely, I’d love for us to get together and talk in person.  I’m sorry that we couldn’t this time.  But I hope this helps get you your start and just let me know how I can help! 

Lizzie:  Oh definitely.  This helps a lot, so thank you so much!

Cynthia:  Oh, sweetie, thank you, I’m glad you asked.  I’m glad I can help. 

 

END.

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 4, 2013 5:21 PM
I think I will use this interview in my Crime subtopic. Since Cynthia works with trauma victims, she relies on body language to tell her information that the victims won't say. It sort of relates to crime because Forensic Psychologists use body language in the same manner, to tell them what the criminals won't.
Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:13 PM
Cynthia's interview could also be used for my first impressions subtopic. Trauma victims are not necessarily related to crime. That being said, she encounters a lot of impressions, some more strange than ores.
Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:13 PM
*others
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School gunman Adam Lanza remembered as a weird, quiet loner

School gunman Adam Lanza remembered as a weird, quiet loner | Kinesics | Scoop.it
NO one knows yet what transformed nerdy, small town loner Adam Lanza into a black-clad monster who gunned down 26 people, including 20 young children, at an elementary school.
Lizzie shumaker's insight:

I plan on using this article for part of my Crime subtopic.  I find it interesting, the body language of Adam Lanza, pre-shooting.

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:24 PM
I may find more popular crime cases so people can see examples of body language in the real world.
Rescooped by Lizzie shumaker from Body Language - Kinesics
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Body Language Will Make Or Break Future Leaders - Forbes

Body Language Will Make Or Break Future Leaders - Forbes | Kinesics | Scoop.it
Future leaders will be those whose policies, actions, behaviors, and, yes, body language are strategically aligned with their verbal messages.

Via paulinobrener
Lizzie shumaker's insight:

I plan to use this article in my "first impressions" c

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:14 PM
I want to stress how important body language is to the leaders. If you want people to follow your beliefs or even give them a second look, you need to have confident body language,
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Secrets of Body Language

Body language is a form of non-verbal communication, which consists of body posture, gestures, facial expressions, and eye movements. Humans send and interpr...

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, February 25, 2013 1:06 PM
I plan on using this for my manipulation section primarily, however I may use it again in the crime one. I have seen parts of this video already and I can tell that its going to be useful!!! It pinpoints how people can show a certain attitude.
Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:18 PM
Why I didn't include first impressions, I don't know. When speaking in front of a large audience, the important leaders need to make at least unforgettable impressions on the audience.
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Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are

Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are | Kinesics | Scoop.it
It's not uncommon for people to overvalue the importance of demonstrating their competence and power, often at the expense of demonstrating their warmth. People judge trustworthiness before competence.

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, February 25, 2013 1:11 PM
This will definitely be a source, because it relates to my first impressions and manipulation subtropics!!!!!
Rescooped by Lizzie shumaker from Body Language interpretation
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The quest to build the perfect lie detector - Salon

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SalonThe quest to build the perfect lie detectorSalonThe psychologist Paul Ekman, who is now professor emeritus at the University of California in San Francisco, spent most of his career gaining expertise on how lying is reflected in facial...

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, February 25, 2013 1:12 PM
This article will be great for my crime subtopic. I will try to research the actual body language cues that tell the truth.
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Article of the Month Page

Lizzie shumaker's insight:

Source #4

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:21 PM
This article is going t be for my Eye contact subtopic. I guess it could also be involved with my crime subtopic. In crime, there are thoughts that eye movement is vital in determining if someone is lying.
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Micro Expressions and A Good Liar

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When is a wink a blink do you think?
Lizzie shumaker's insight:

Source #2

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:23 PM
This articles will be useful for crime. Micro expressions canaffect subconsciously ho they're reacting internally to situations.
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Casey Anthony Body Language Appears As Though She's Watching Someone Else's Trial

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It is  23 of Casey Anthony's trial. What I find astounding is how she behaves when she enters the courtroom each morning. As she becomes more and more familiar with her surrounding and with the peo...
Lizzie shumaker's insight:

same as the Adam Lanza body language article, i think this one would be another great example of kinesics in crime!

 

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Microsoft Research Asia Takes Facial Recognition Software A “Nose ...

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To record 3D facial performances of a person, they first select three actors who made a series of facial expressions that is captured by a marker-based motion capture system by applying about 100 reflective dots to each ...

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Lizzie shumaker's insight:

i just think this is extremely interesting.  I may mention it in my presentation as a side-note.

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What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed Reading People

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Source #5

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Walt Bechtell's comment, February 24, 2013 12:25 PM
Great articles. Finish commentation.
Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:10 PM
Since he is an ex-FBI agent, he deals with crime and the kinesics related to it. He is trained in recognizing body language for the purposes of spying criminals or seeing if they're lying. I'm going to use this book for my crime subtopic
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What Happens When Your Words And Your Body Language Don't Match? - Forbes

What Happens When Your Words And Your Body Language Don't Match? - Forbes | Kinesics | Scoop.it
When words and body language are not aligned, people believe the body language every time. (RT @erik_hansson: What Happens When Your Words And Your Body Language Don't Match?

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, February 25, 2013 1:08 PM
This is a shorter article, but it may be useful for my crime section, relating to how lies can be uncovered by body language.
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Autism May Be Recognisable by Body Language | The Courier Pigeon

Autism May Be Recognisable by Body Language | The Courier Pigeon | Kinesics | Scoop.it

The body language of a child may lend a helping hand in identifying whether the child has autism or not.


Via paulinobrener, Yvonne Sánchez Tapia
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Lizzie shumaker's comment, February 25, 2013 1:04 PM
I'm not sure if I will include this article for sure, but I find it extremely interesting that body language can provide information on certain disorders. If I do use this, i will include it in its own separate subcategory.
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5 C’s of Body Language

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The study of body language has fascinated me for years. There are over 30,000 known signals in body language and facial expression that we interpret, mostly subconsciously. It is a favorite game at...

Via Konstantinos kayannis, Yvonne Sánchez Tapia
Lizzie shumaker's insight:

I plan on using this source primarily for the Culture paragraph. I will make Culture one of my subtopics. It didn't occur to me that body language is extremely different depending on the culture.

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, February 21, 2013 1:18 PM
I plan on using this source primarily for the Culture paragraph. I will make Culture one of my subtopics. It didn't occur to me that body language is extremely different depending on the culture.
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HowStuffWorks "Controlling and Manipulating Your Own Body Language"

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How much does body language matter? Read about body language and nonverbal communication at HowStuffWorks.
Lizzie shumaker's insight:

Source #1

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:25 PM
Like the title says, this article is going to be great for my manipulation subtopic. I want to show how others can guilt or manipulate someone into believing something without speaking.
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Body Language and First Impressions

Body Language and First Impressions | Kinesics | Scoop.it
A discussion of how body language affects first impressions, including more detailed information about specific common elements of body language that strongly influence first impressions.
Lizzie shumaker's insight:

Source #3

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Lizzie shumaker's comment, March 5, 2013 1:16 PM
I plan on using this for advice or tips for great first impressions. I can relate this subtopic to interviewing for careers or making a food first impression when you're presenting.