It’s an old saying that “the eyes are the windows to the soul,” because it’s usually easy to inform what an individual is feeling by looking into their eyes.
Eye contact is a very important part of nonverbal communication. Maintaining eye contact during a conversation gives the impression that you are paying attention to the other person. Understanding the message that you simply are sending through eye contact is vital to improving communication. Keeping eye contact with the person you are lecturing indicates interest and saying to the person “You are important and that I am listening”.
Why eye contact is important…..
- Eye contact signals attention – If you’ve ever spoken to someone who didn’t in the least check out you while you were speaking, you realize how irritating it can be. It clearly signals to you that the opposite person isn’t in the least curious about you and what you’ve got to mention. In short, chatting with someone who doesn’t check out you seems like you’re lecturing a wall. Maintaining eye contact whenever people speak doesn’t only signal that you simply are listening to what they emphasize but also that you have an interest in what they need to mention. By observing others when they speak, they become your full center of attention. It will show your counterpart that you simply respect them Which you’re curious about what they assert. Doing so will simultaneously make them respect and appreciate you tons more.
- Eye contact conveys confidence and trustworthiness – Admittedly, it takes confidence to make eye contact with the person you’re chatting with. This is very true once you are giving a presentation. In most situations, the temptation to let your eyes wander around is sort of appealing. By maintaining eye contact, others are going to be more likely to perceive you as a competent and trustworthy person. Everyone around you knows even as very much as you are doing. How difficult it is often to take care of a high level of eye contact. That’s the rationale why others will greatly appreciate it once you are ready to keep eye contact when you speak. At an equivalent time, people are going to be more likely to perceive you as someone who is convinced of what you say and can feel that you simply believe in your ideas.
- Eye contact helps you to make a bond with others – Maintaining eye contact, regardless of if you speak or listen, helps you to connect with others. It will signal to them that you simply are an open book and you’ve got nothing to hide – or at a minimum that, you are speaking the reality. Doing so will assist you to determine trust with people, which helps you to quickly form a bond with them.
- Eye contact engages others – When you don’t look others in the eyes when you speak, you will feel as if you’re having a monologue. Your counterparts will feel as if you’re not curious about having a true dialogue with them. You can avoid all this by maintaining eye contact when you speak. Doing so invites your listeners to actively participate in the discussion. The eye contact you maintain with them will also encourage other people’s nonverbal feedback about what you’re saying.
- Eye contact makes you more confident – As astonishing as it sounds, keeping an eye contact when you speak will cause you to feel more confident about yourself. At an equivalent time, the way you behave and speak will become more assertive and convincing. Naturally, becoming more confident by looking others in the eyes isn’t something that happens immediately. In the beginning, keeping a better level of eye contact will feel a touch awkward. But as soon as you gwt used to it, your nervousness subsides, which eventually allows you to be more confident. Another positive side-effect of maintaining eye contact when you speak is that it’ll slow your speech down in a natural way. Instead of hastily trying to urge your voice heard, you’ll speak slower, leading others to perceive you as more skilled, experienced, or authoritative.
How to improve eye contact?
The good thing about eye contact is that it is often learned a bit like the other skill. If you are feeling that you simply are struggling to take care of eye contact in conversations – especially when you’re talking – subsequently it is going to be of great help to you. Admittedly, it takes a touch of practice to be ready to confidently hold eye contact with someone you’re chatting with. But if you’re willing to practice and strengthen your eye contact skills regularly, you’ll be ready to see encouraging improvements in your day-to-day life.
- Maintain the right balance – Balance is of great importance when it involves eye contact. Effective eye contact is curious, appropriate, and balanced. When you overdo it, it’s perceived as aggressive and overly dominant. If you stare at people once they speak, you’ll make them quite uncomfortable. Always ask yourself what quiet eye contact is acceptable within the particular situation you’re confronted with.
- Learn to overcome fear and nervousness – The key to overcoming these awkward sensations lies in diligent practice. Gradually increasing the quantity of eye contact you retain while speaking will assist you in slowly but surely adapting to the unfamiliar experience. In this sense, you’re progressively desensitizing yourself to the way it feels when maintaining a good level of eye contact.
- Focus on one eye – When you’re watching someone, pick one eye and keep watching it without switching between the eyes. You can feel free to switch eyes every once in a while, – just make sure that it is not done too frequently. Similarly, don’t attempt to catch up on the very fact that you simply can never check out both eyes of an individual by watching the bridge of a person’s nose. If the people you’re lecturing are sitting on the brink of you, they’re going to quickly realize that you’re not looking at them within the eyes.
- Maintain the right duration of eye contact – When it involves a proper duration of eye contact, attempt to maintain a healthy balance. Keep eye contact for about 5 to 8 seconds. After that, look shortly to collect your thoughts or to believe what was being said and re-establish eye contact again.
- Practice, practice, practice – All it takes is practice and therefore the conscious effort to keep watching other people’s eyes when you speak. You will surely fall back to old patterns every once in a while. For this reason, attempt to pay close attention to your eye movements as you speak. When you notice that your eyes are scanning the environment for much too long, simply refocus them so as to re-establish eye contact.
- Break eye contact with the side – Avoid situations during which you look down when breaking eye contact. This signals submission, guilt, disagreement, inferiority, or maybe shame. At an equivalent time, breaking eye contact by looking up could also be perceived as a symbol of dominance or boredom. That’s also something to be avoided. Break your eye contact by looking sideways so as to avoid these negative nonverbal signals.
- Practice in front of a mirror – practicing ahead of a mirror is probably the foremost effective technique to accelerate your eye contact skills.
- Practice by watching news anchors – Another very helpful method to practice eye contact skills is to use news anchors on the TV as your practice partners. Doing so will help you to practice your skill of maintaining eye contact when another person is chatting with you. It also gives you the chance to coach your ability to take care of a healthy ratio between maintaining eye contact and searching shortly away.