Without safety and trust, you don’t have much of anything.  Almost everyone knows this yet we overlook it and the subtle messages communicated via facial expressions.  Tune in or miss out.  If someone isn’t facing you, then something isn’t right in their mind or body.  If someone doesn’t ask you questions or isn’t giving you eye contact, then it’s probable that you are in sync with their safety zone.  This doesn’t apply to everyone.  Sometimes you aren’t meant to be with that person for a myriad of reasons, but in many cases you could increase your chances by simply asking questions, moving your body, disclosing various facts about yourself to open them up.

A Few Suggested Practices to Boost Safety & Trust:

* Safety can NEVER be taken for granted.  Yet we often seek to expand our comfort zones to feel alive.  It’s a bit of a paradox so don’t get too confused by the jedi mind tricks, just realize you will make mistakes!  Recover quickly and own them when you slip up.  By being present to another’s safety you will connect deeper.  Don’t allow anything awkward to go without commentary.  The more you speak to his/her subconscious or internal thoughts, you will be earning respect and trust.  Ironically it’s cool to be off.  But just limit being off to once during the first 10 minutes.  You can practice being “off” by saying something on purpose that you know is ridiculous to elicit a response, and then quickly poke fun at what you said.  By training your brain on purpose to make mistakes, it will make cleaning up your messes much easier.

* Context is king.  If you meet someone in a space with his/her friends, their subconscious will feel safer so this is one reason why people open up more.  Plus you’ve been screened to some extent because you were invited amongst similar peers.  Be sharp about where you are and do not treat someone the same around friends as if you met them on the street.  Usually people are more cautious around friends of friends due to social courtesy or backlash.  People have more to lose in these environments which is why people play it safe.  Amongst friends of friends you can take some calculated risks to stand out and become differentiated in a positive way while earning safety badges.