Yesterday I was standing and talking to my husband with my hands on my hips. It wasn't a hands on hips type of conversation, that was just how I was standing.
"Don't stand like that. It makes you look aggressive."
Funny, but I think about this at work all the time. For some reason, arms akimbo is my default. I catch myself standing that way constantly. My first reaction is to put my hands behind my back when I notice it.
The other day Mrs. A asked me if I stood with my hands folded behind my back to keep myself out of trouble.
"That's exactly right," I told her.
Residents notice. Even if they aren't able to get the words out, they can tell how you are feeling by the way you stand when you're working with them. Arms akimbo can make them feel like you are being bossy or are in a hurry. Arms crossed is defensive and makes them feel like you aren't listening or you don't care. Keeping your arms relaxed at your sides when talking to them shows that you're listening and are willing to do what it takes to help them. If they feel comfortable, they are less likely to get upset or angry and that automatically makes the day go smoother.