If you’re like any responsible adult who goes into work five days a week, you’re probably hoping to be promoted one day. You work your butt off, complete every assignment by overly exceeding your boss’s expectations, and always arrive 10 minutes early before your shift begins.

However, just because you check off some of these qualifications to be considered a great employee doesn’t exactly mean that your boss is going to call you into his/her office to give you a well-deserved raise. There are other factors that need to be taken into account — you know, aside from just showing up to work.

Your body language, for instance, could actually be the one thing that’s holding you back from growing in your career.

Without you realizing it, you could be crossing your arms too often, slouching in your seat, or — gasp — using your phone. While these little nuances may not seem that big of a deal in the comfort of your home or around your besties, doing them too often in the office could make you seem anxious or incompetent. Not sure which body language mistakes you’re making? Here are 12 that you should try to stay away from if you want to grow in your career.

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Here’s an easy one: Rolling your eyes is a big no-no. The gesture is simply rude.

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Whether you’re super friendly with your colleague or not, it’s best to keep a healthy distance between you and your work friends — and your boss — when you communicate about a professional topic. If not, you can make the other person feel uncomfortable and even threatened by your presence. The best rule to follow? According to Square Up, three to eight feet is the perfect amount of distance to have between you and your colleagues.

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Crossing Your Arms or Legs

While criss-cross applesauce used to be the cool-kid thing to do in elementary school, you’ll get a big fat ‘F’ if you even try to do that at work.

Crossing your arms, legs or feet may feel comfortable while you’re trying to pump out a million emails or listen to your boss speak during a meeting, however, this nonverbal behavior could give off negative signals to others around you. For instance, others may not engage with you because they think you’re being defensive, stubborn, or distant, and no one wants to play that game. Trust us.

However, do cross your arms if you’re alone in your cubicle, working on a tough assignment. According to research completed by Ron Friedman and Andrew J. Elliott, you’re 30% more likely to stick through an assignment if you use this type of body language. So get to crossing!

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Not Mirroring Others

Mirroring your colleges enhances your chances of building a positive rapport with them. Why? Because using the “the chameleon effect” often allows you to engage in more deeper conversations with other people, which in the long run, could allow others to trust you more.

 

 

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Failing to Make Eye Contact
While it’s a known rule to not break eye contact when you’re interviewing for a job, the same applies for when you’re engaging in a serious conversation at work. One may reduce their gaze if they don’t feel confident in what they’re speaking about or prefer to not engage in embarrassing conversations. But if you want to increase your chances of having better conversations with people at work, look them in the eyes when you or they are speaking because it produces a deeper connection between the both of you.