October, 2009

How to Make a Firm Eye Contact

Why do you have to look people in the eyes when you’re speaking? As they say, the eyes are the windows to the soul. You will be judged by your sincerity and honesty based on how you look at another person. If you can’t think straight, it could mean that you’re hiding something or you have not cultivated a more pleasing and open personality.

If you’re having trouble making good eye contact with others, perhaps the following tips can help you:

1. Learn it in a gradual manner. If you’re not used to it, then most definitely, it will take you time before you are comfortable with what you’re doing. You can, however, do so in a gradual manner. For example, on your first week, you try to maintain at least 10 percent eye contact. Do this until you can do it 100 percent. You can also look at the person’s nose bridge, the one found in between the eyes for a start.

2. Look at the people on your screen. You can use your being a couch potato to help you practice on making eye contact. While you’re sitting in front of your TV, try looking at the people or characters into their eyes than in their hand or body motions or even in their setting. You would realize that you’re starting to feel what the character is feeling because you are able to open your line of communication.

3. Listen to someone. It’s much easier for you to learn how make a firm eye contact when you’re listening than when you’re talking. On the other hand, it makes you more attentive since your attention is focused on the person and what he or she could be saying, not on anything else.

4. Use your imagination. If you don’t watch TV a lot, you can try to be more ingenious. Think that you’re actually talking to someone and that you’re staring at the person’s face, particularly the eyes, while you do so. This is a good exercise if you’ll be meeting someone for the first time or when you’re not comfortable with the presence of another person.

5. Gaze into the eyes, not stare. To stare is to fix your eyes on something. When you’re talking, make sure that you don’t do that—that is, look into the person’s eyes and nothing else. Soon, he or she will feel uncomfortable and may even find you weird or suspicious. Rather, gaze, or look at someone with amazement, wonder, or admiration.

6. Start with yourself. If you’re scared of looking straight at other people’s eyes, then you can try doing it on yourself. All you need to do is to look yourself straight in the mirror. Ensure that you can get past the uncomfortability stage; otherwise, you would feel more uncomfortable if you’re already looking at other people. You can also further enhance the exercise by adding dialogues. Capture the right expression with your eyes.

Patience is a virtue, they say. Don’t be discouraged if you can’t get what you want at first try. Keep on trying until you can find the confidence you need to make firm eye contact.

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