It’s the space surrounding a person
According to body language, personal space is the space surrounding a person. It’s a circle where the person’s body is its center. The size of the circle differs from one person to another.
People don’t usually let strangers inside their personal space
A person will usually feel uncomfortable if a stranger comes inside their personal space, which is why most people feel tense inside elevators. A person will only allow someone inside his personal space if he feels comfortable around him or if he likes him.
Personal space applies while sitting
Personal space also applies while a person is sitting. A person will usually pick the one they feel most comfortable towards and sit beside them.
Close friends leave very small personal distance
Close friends usually sit or stand very close to each other. According to body language, the closeness of people can be determined by the spaces they leave between themselves.
Touching is the highest form of closeness
Very close friends might sit so close to each other that one or more points of their bodies touch. It’s very normal for a close friend to sit so that his knee touches the leg of a friend. This can hardly happen with strangers unless space is very limited. (See Why do some people touch others while speaking?)
Personal space is usually controlled by the subconscious mind
Personal space is usually controlled by the subconscious mind. This means that a person won’t consciously realize that they are leaving a certain distance between themselves and others.
A person will adjust their personal space if you change it
If a person is standing far from you then you came close, that person might back off a little to re-adjust their personal space. Because people feel uncomfortable when they let strangers in, most people will adjust their personal space accordingly.
Personal space varies across cultures
In some countries, people are more likely to stand closer to each other, while in other countries the opposite is true.
Knowing how comfortable a person feels around you
You should compare the distance a person keeps between themselves and you to the distance the person keeps between you and others to determine how comfortable this person feels around you.
Shy people leave bigger distances
Shy people usually live bigger distances between themselves and others.
Not standing close to you doesn’t mean anything negative
A person can stay away from someone because they feel anxious, uncomfortable, insecure or unsafe. If a person stands away from you, this doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you.
Little personal space is one sign of attraction
According to body language, if a person is attracted to someone then they are very likely to leave little personal space between themselves and that person. In such a case, that person’s unconscious mind desires closeness towards that person. (See What makes a person attractive?)
What is personal space in body language?
What does personal space mean? Body language in personal space