Have you ever had to shake hands with someone who had such an atrocious handshake it made you shudder? I recently met someone who had what I call the “dead fish handshake”. Their hand was completely limp. (And slightly slimy…eew!) My Dad always told me that one can learn a lot about a person by the way they shake hands. The following are my observations of what one can learn from a handshake.
The shrinking shake: This is the handshake that lasts less than a second, (often accompanied by distinct fishiness of the deceased variety) which clearly communicates dislike or discomfort.
The speed shake: At the end of this shake, one is often surprised to find that his hand has not vibrated off! Often fueled by the exuberance of youth, this shake clearly denotes enthusiasm or excitement. –Or a rather extreme excess of caffeine or sugar. : )
The trick shake: This shake could take several forms, and is usually completely unpredictable. Such a shake reveals a personality with an all-too-healthy dose of mischief in it.
The rival shake: In order to experience this shake, one must participate. Instead of maintaining an appropriately firm grasp of the other person’s hand, both parties grip as hard as they can for as long as they can, or until one surrenders. This shake reveals a competitive or adversarial spirit.
The warm shake: This is the best kind of shake. Hearty, firm, and often accompanied by a happy smile, this shake communicates warmth of feeling and friendship.
Just like Daddy always says, you can learn a lot from a handshake. What does yours say about you?