VAK: How to Discover a Person’s Visual, Auditory, Kinaesthetic Style

Using VAK (Visual, Auditory, Kinaesthetic) for Better Communication

Here’s a neat trick to help you communicate more effectively. It actually tells you their VAK (Visual, Auditory, Kinaesthetic) learning style, but this can be used much more.
First, find a colleague. Ask them what they did for their 40th birthday. Below 40? Ask them what they did for their 30th birthday.  Basically, it should be a question that makes them think about the past. Then, see where their eyes look. It’ll happen in a split second. Do they look upwards? (Maybe towards the sky). Perhaps, they look side to side? (Maybe towards their ears). Or, do they look down? (Maybe towards their hands). 

VAK, Visual, Auditory, Kinaesthetic Chart

VAK (Visual, Auditory, Kinaesthetic)

From this simple observation, you can learn about the person’s preferred learning style. In short, you can observe their VAK. That is, whether they are a visual, auditory, or kinaesthetic learner.


If they look up, they are a visual person. They see things clearly – A vision. They can picture it easily. Using words like ‘I see…’.


If they look side to side, they are an auditory person. They like to hear things more. They may need to repeat back what they have learnt. A picture is not enough. Using words like, ‘I hear…’. If you would like an extensive sheet showing all the phrases each of the 3 people uses, add into the comments below, ‘I want to be a Jedi’.


If they look down, they are a kinaesthetic or tactile person. More in touch with their feelings. Hands-on. Practical. Feelings are important. Using words like, ‘I feel…’.

VAK Language

Depending on their preferred learning style, you will notice subtle differences in the way people choose to communicate.

Lady wrapped in garb, a deer hiding in the bush, pair of hands holding a sunflower

VAK Language

Below, are some examples of the types of descriptive language that you may notice your colleagues use.


  • I get the picture
  • I see what you mean
  • Let’s get this into perspective
  • It appears that
  • Show me
  • The focus of attention
  • Looking closely
  • A blind spot
  • It’s clear to me
  • A different angle
  • A cloud on the horizon
  • He’s shady
  • This is the outlook
  • With hindsight
  • She’s short-sighted
  • You’ll look back on this
  • Let’s get a snapshot of this and give it laser-like focus
  • Step back and see the big picture


  • That rings a bell
  • We’re on the same wavelength
  • Let’s talk about it
  • You hum it I’ll sing it
  • Within earshot
  • Let’s sound this out
  • I’m speechless
  • Shout from the hilltops
  • People will hear you
  • The silence was deafening
  • Singing from the same hymn sheet
  • Word for word
  • In a manner of speaking
  • There was an undertone


  • He’s thick-skinned
  • A cool customer
  • I grasp the meaning
  • A heated argument
  • I will be in touch
  • I can’t put a finger on it
  • She’s giving me
  • The cold shoulder or the shrug off
  • We are scratching the surface
  • Let’s dig deeper, get a grip
  • A lukewarm attitude
  • I feel it in my bones
  • It just doesn’t feel right, I have a strange sensation

For further tips and information, you can take a look at our Ultimate Guide to Communication Skills and our Communication Skills YouTube Channel. Also, check out our award-winning blog to see more Communication Skills tips and articles.

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