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Making Eye Contact Is Less Influential Than Assumed

Stashed in: Influence!, Game of Thrones!, Community, Awesome, Psychology!, Body Language, Eyes, Harvard, Mike Myers

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According to a study from the University of British Columbia, the University of Freiburg in Germany and the Harvard Kennedy school, locking eyes with someone discussing controversial views actually made the listener less likely to be persuaded by the speaker's argument.


<experiment>This suggests that perhaps in more adversarial situations, like during an argument, eye contact might be associated with dominance or intimidation, rather than a sign of connection as it might be in friendly situations. The researchers note that given that different cultures vary in how they use eye contact, the results might not be applicable on a worldwide scale. Plus, it's pretty creepy to stare directly into someone's eyes for the entire time they talk to you, so this might not replicate real-world interactions precisely. Next, the researchers plan to study whether there are physiological changes associated with eye contact that may be at play, like an increase in heart rate or release of stress hormones. "Eye contact is so primal that we think it probably goes along with a whole suite of subconscious physiological changes," lead author Frances Chen said.

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So is eye contact useful for anything?

Yes.  Yes yes yes.

For what?



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More stuff to eyeball.  Phase VI is body scan.

I'm not sure I understand this:

At this phase the goal of the therapist is to identify any uncomfortable sensations that could be lingering in the body. While thinking about the originally disturbing event, the client is asked to scan over his or her body entirely, searching for tension or other physical discomfort. Any negative sensations are targeted and then diminished, using the same bilateral stimulation technique from phases IV and V. The EMDR network has asserted that positive cognitions should be incorporated physically as well as intellectually. Phase VI is considered complete when the client is able to think and speak about the event without feeling any physical or emotional discomfort.

I'm not sure I do either.  I have two friends who are practitioners of EMDR and they tell me it works.  It's definitely worth looking into for treatment of PTSD.

Thank you -- will keep that in mind.

The tapping technique works, but is it the locus of where we tap, the verbal affirmations or simply recalling traumatic emotions in a safe setting with repetition until we no longer are disturbed by them?

I don't think there's much evidence to claim any of those observable causal factors.

There is clinical evidence that when a person is stimulated to recall ANY emotion and physical sensation repetitively, in a non-random way, it tends to diminish the intensity of that emotion and felt sense... so we get to a point of tolerable clearance for recalling trauma and hence why the last bite of Tiramisu doesn't taste as dramatically delicious as the first ...and so on.

HOWEVER, when a person is stimulated emotionally and by felt sense in a random--non anticipatory--way, those experiences tend to enhance the intensity of those sensations.  Which is possibly why EMDR works as a self-administered technique, because it is impossible to create random, non-anticipatory events for ourselves and why thrill seekers must seek events outside their own control for the next great peak experience.

Try it.

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