Being familiar with different body languages and knowing how to properly apply them can greatly improve the way you interact with people. And even more so when it comes to the workplace and one of the challenging body language to understand and identify is the body language of the hands.
Some of the hand body language that you should start observing is:
Holding: The way hands hold an object or a person can mean a number of ways. Cupped hands can possibly mean the person is thinking of a fragile idea or is being delicate with what he or she is doing. Gripping an object or a person can translate to being possessive of the object or person being held tight as well as ownership or desire. The tighter the grip, the stronger the feelings present within the person. When a person holds his or her own hands or body then it can signal a desire to comfort oneself while wringing hands can mean discomfort and anxiety.
Control: If you see someone who has his or her palm facing down then chances are that the person is making an effort to restrain him or herself figuratively. Doing so towards someone on the other hand may mean an attempt to restrain the other person from doing what he or she is doing or planning to do. A person leaning on a desk with his or her palms down may signify that he or she is taking charge of the conversation. A palm facing outward may signify that the doer does not want anyone getting closer to him or her or is a sign to stop what a person is doing at the moment. A pointing finger on the other hand basically translates to giving a direction.
Greetings: Hands are often used by people as a form of greeting and different people and culture have their own unique ways of greeting people through the use of their hands. The most common method of greeting people would be a handshake and even handshakes have different meanings depending on how they were done. Opening the palm translates to the person not meaning any harm. If a person wants to show dominance then the hand would be positioned on top and will be held with strength and a prolonged hold as if to say that the person will decide when to stop or to let go. Affection on the other hand is reflected on the speed and duration of the shake as well as complimented with the touch of the other hand and with a smile.