“Listen to your partner with your eyes as well as your ears. Eyes are the doors to the heart.”
~Janvrin & Selleck.
It’s no surprise really. We all know quite implicitly that our eyes are often the giveaway to what we’re really thinking. Like the times we doubt our confidence and can’t keep eye contact with the person we feel inferior to or threatened by.
It is incredible how even the slightest difference in facial gestures can promote vastly different visual cues as to how others see us, and indeed, how we even see ourselves.
Generally speaking, lots of conversational eye contact is associated with “liking” responses. It implies friendliness and trust.
Attention and Listening – Do it for Mirroring
But there’s more regarding our attention and listening. If we actually look into the eyes of people we communicate with, especially as we listen, we engender success—we “see” what they’re saying to us, and they see that we see. This inspires double confidence.
And again, we know that we can pretty well accurately determine people’s approaches to us via their eye contact with us; we know this when they “rate” our eye contact and then respond to us in their body language, instinctively, positively or negatively, according to how they believe we’re responding. We mirror each other.
Listening – the Tough “Heart” Skill
Listening, I think we all know, is a tough skill to master. This is mostly because we do actually listen with our hearts—we either want to listen or we don’t. There’s hardly any middle ground. And when we don’t want to listen—because we don’t have the time, energy or inclination etc—we communicate subliminally in a myriad of ways our lack of interest.
And because the ‘eyes have it’ as far as the heart to listening is concerned, if we want to communicate and we’re serious about heeding what our partners are saying to us, we should listen very intently with our eyes.
Practicing Eye Contact
Fortunately, this can be trained into us manually, and with continual practice we can actually act ourselves into thinking differently, girding our hearts externally. Perhaps we need some prompts to remind ourselves.
If we’re wise though, we’ll see the importance of what our mates are saying to us. Is there possibly a more important person to listen to?
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.