Few Body language rules regarding eye contact:
-Glancing for a prolonged period of time, intermittently but repetitively: shows sexual attraction, lust if in the distance interest in the conversation if face to face while one of you is talking Staring hard without interruption at all invasive and threatening (usually accompanied by small pupils)
- Gazing up and down shows: appraisal of sexual attraction – this is true for both men and women, though women are usually more discreet!
- Avoiding gaze: could be lying, or feeling guilty or uncomfortable about the subject discussed. If they are looking away after a long gaze, it could just mean they are “taking a rest”, or distancing themselves from the subject.
- Gazing regularly: positive, inviting attitude – open to communicate with you Blinking
- Prolonged blinking (as if blinking in slow motion): losing interest (or feeling very sleepy! )
- often accompanied by a raised eyebrow. To maintain your influence, change the conversation quickly or ask a question to get them to refocus.
- Excessive blinking: showing romantic interest (if their pupils are dilated), sign of stress, could be lying
- Rolling the eyes upwards: disagreement (or exasperation if very obvious). It you spot this signal better to stop and ask for their opinion… and listen to them!
Some important do’s and do not’s of eye contact:
- If you have trouble staring someone in the eye, simply focus at something on their face
- When speaking to a group look at everyone
- Look at people who are key decision makers or hold power
- Look at reactive listeners
- Don’t look at the floor, scripts or anything that causes you to tilt your head away form the receiver
- Don’t look at bad listeners that may distract you
Tip: The easiest way to maintain eye contact naturally is to look at the person’s whole face above the tip of their nose. Look at the bridge of their nose, cheek bones, forehead, hair. People who use eye contact are viewed as confident, credible and having nothing to hide. You may use body language to make you appear more confident, powerful, trusting, etc depending on what the situation may require from you. If you give off negative signs, then it could be the difference of achieving your goal e.g. a successful presentation, proposing an idea in a meeting, discussing a task with an employee etc.
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