Expert Q&A With

Henrik Fexeus

Henrik Fexeus is an author, communications specialist, and performer of edutainment. He has brought new practical meaning to the phrase “mind reading” and reveals skills in nonverbal communication, body language, and psychological influence.

Henrik has studied communication techniques and mental skills like NLP, hypnosis, acting, magic, and psychology, and is renowned for his understanding of influence in the media, advertising, propaganda and memetics. He is currently touring with his mind-reading show and has been hosting his own TV-show in conjunction with Sweden’s largest broadcaster.

What does your website offer its visitors?

Craig, you got me right away. The swedish website contains tons of information relating to my ongoing projects, but at the time I had it made I didn't realize there might be international interest as well. So the english part of the website is just a splash page with my bio.

However, we have just launched an US facebook page for The Art Of Reading Minds! It is barely out of its wrapper yet but will be filled with everything from mind puzzles to articles about human behaviour and whatever seems interesting to write about. Since feedback is so immediate on facebook, the idea is to let the readers control what kind of content I publish to some degree. The facebook page will also be a great tool to answer questions and help people further along with techniques they have picked up from my book. There won't be any pictures of cute cats, though. That is a promise.

Who inspired you to pursue a career in human behavior?

Henrik Fexeus Influence

(Photo Credit: sparky_vision)

The bullies at my school when I was a kid. I'm serious. I never understood the invisible social rules as a kid, although I realized that they existed, so I got picked on ruthlessly. That started a lifelong quest to find the answer to the old question of why we do what we do - and also, what I can do to change what other people do. As soon as you start to learn a thing or two about human behavior, you realize that we all influence each others behavior all the time. Quite often aimlessly. But if you understand how we affect and influence each other and if you can take control of that, you can do some really amazing stuff. Ask any politician. Or sales person. Me, I use it to get people to buy me ice cream.

‘The Art of Reading Minds’ is an international best seller, with half a million sold copies in more than 18 languages. What was your inspiration for writing this book?

The thing is, you never know what will happen when you write a book, whether ten or ten thousand people will read it. The Art of Reading Minds came about as a result of me giving talks on the subject of human behavior for several years, as well as giving courses in Non-verbal Communication and Influence. After a couple of years I got the idea of putting it all into a book, so I could expand on the subject in a way I hadn't been able to in my talks, as well as add new things I found interesting.

The idea was to write the book I wished had existed when I started to work in this field, and to write it in a style that I myself prefer to read i.e., to the point and very practical. That was my main concern, to make it into something I wanted to read myself. I didn't even consider whether anyone else would want to read it. But apparently they did. I had no idea that it would become such a success, but people are reading it all over the world. I'm still in shock.

How does having an adept understanding of body language affect your private life?

Immensely. I live a life that I really enjoy, but I don't think I would have achieved a fraction of what I've done had I not had a good understanding of body language and sub-concious communication.

I know it sounds a bit much. But think about it. When you "get fluent" in body language, you get an acute awareness of other peoples mood shifts and emotional changes at the split of a second, however minute those changes might be. You know exactly where they are in their own minds, which gives you an incredible tool: To always have the ability to communicate in the manner most constructive for that person at that precise moment. To always be able to provide whatever it is they need the most, whether it is comfort, solitude, or a tickle. I truly believe this is the building block on which everything else we do rests.

What’s the best way to influence someone you’ve never met before?

That depends, of course, on what your goal is. But before you do anything, you need to know how the other person communicates. Listen closely to what kind of words they use and watch how they use their body language and facial expressions to get a feeling of what they really are trying to tell you. That will give you knowledge about what influence techniques will be most effective on this particular person.

Personally, I have found that the best way to influence someone is not by promising riches or by intimidation, it is by explaining how - whatever it is you want them to do - will fill a deep psychological need. This is not necessarily something they will tell you, but by keeping close watch on their non-verbal communication you will understand whether the other person is someone who needs to be seen as competent by her peers, whether he needs to feel like a winner, or whether she needs to feel safe. Or whatever their driving need is.

Pinpoint their basic psychological and personal need and tie it to whatever it is you want from them, and they will do it. This is by far the best way to influence, since you both get something you want.

Can your book help those who are looking to progress their business career?

Absolutely. Even in business, you deal with other people. And no matter how professional they are, they still communicate on the same non-verbal, sub-concious level as anyone else. Which means that the same techniques you used to get that good looking person at the bar to like you, will also work in the meeting room. I don't necessarily mean that you should try to pick up your boss, what I mean is that this kind of communication works at such a basic psychological level that no matter what the situation, it will still be an important part of your over-all message.

Even in business, the first rule is to get the others to like you. Because if you don't achieve that, they won't be really interested in listening to what you have to say. And guess what? Getting people to like you and trust you is one of the main functions of our body language.

What advice would you give someone on a first date?

(Photo Credit: Courosa)

Ah, the first date. That is a tricky situation. There are so many things to get right on a first date and all of them can go wrong. The trick is of course to slowly heighten the attraction and romantic tension, without being obvious about it. Prolonged eye contact is good, not to the point that the other person gets nervous of course, but we usually only look people in the eyes for a longer period of time when we are angry or in love.

By forcing the other person to look you in the eyes longer than usual, his or her brain will recognize the behaviour and ask itself whether it is angry or attracted (since it behaves in a way consistent with one of those two moods). Since it is not angry, it will deduce that the reason must be attraction. And it will jump start that emotion.

You also want to touch the other person regularly. Innocent, fleeting touches on the arm or hand when you point something out to them further away on the street, or when you tell them a funny story, will make them used to physical contact between the two of you. This gets important if you want more romantic physical contact later on. You can't get more of something if you have nothing of it to begin with. I know all this might sound a bit, well, manipulative, but it is a date isn't it?

What have you got planned for the rest of 2012?

I have just started to write my fifth book, and I'm working on a new tv show in Sweden. I try to give as many talks on Mind Reading skills as I can, but I'm also on a year long tour with my stage show IN YOUR HEAD, which is a full blown theatrical production and one of the most complicated things I have ever done. Add to that that I have a new baby in the family which needs an attentive father (a.k.a drool target), and the year is looking pretty full. But fun. Oh, and I look forward of course to answering all the fun and intriguing questions from the readers of The Art of Reading Minds!

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Essential Reading

The Art of Reading Minds

Book Details

The Art of Reading Minds has everything you need to know in order to become an expert at mind reading. Using skills such as non-verbal communication, body language and psychological influence, we can find out what another person thinks and feels – and consequently control that person’s thoughts and beliefs any way we want.

Henrik Fexeus introduces a new kind of practical interpretation of the concept mind reading, which you will find practical in all aspects of your everyday life: job interviews, on a first date, suggesting proposals to your boss and in all social situations where you want to get your ideas across and influence other people. Posture, intonation, pace, glances and hand gestures all reveal what a person feels. Often it will be in direct conflict with the message they are expressing in words. Henrik Fexeus gives you the right tools to decipher these hidden messages.

After his academic education in philosophy, Henrik Fexeus rapidly became a communications specialist. Fexeus is now a highly sought after performer of edutainment. He has brought a whole new meaning to the expression mind reading and reveals skills in nonverbal communication, body language, psychological manipulation and psychological influence. He is currently touring with his mind reading show and has been hosting his own TV-show in conjunction with Sweden’s largest broadcaster.

See following link for details.

The Art of Reading Minds

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