What I’m Reading

What Every Body Is Saying by Joe Navarro and Marvin Karlins

The lead author of this book is an expert in body language. Some people might consider that a pseudoscience, but I think this guy is the real deal. He worked at the FBI where he used his knowledge of nonverbal communication to tell if suspects were lying to him. He has also saved companies millions by reading people in negotiations.

He has amazing insight on nonverbal communication. Here’s one tidbit you can try out. Watch people’s legs when they’re talking to each other. If two people both have their legs crossed while having a conversation, it means they are close friends who have known each other for a long time.

Embracing the Wide Sky by Daniel Tammet

This is an elegant and brilliant look at the world from the perspective of an autistic savant. It’s quite quotable as the author has exceptionally florid prose. He begins the first chapter with this gem, “Our minds are miracles — immensely intricate webs of gossamer light inside our heads that shape our very sense of self and our understanding of the world around us.” His aims are to teach people how to use their minds more effectively and to challenge misconceptions about the mind. One of these misconceptions is the rather common notion that the human mind functions like a computer.

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