I had a professor my first semester of college who was very intent, very present in office hours. His eye contact never wavered. I felt as if he never looked away. So then I was always pulling out the darty-eye self consciously. It kind of creeped me out. It was almost too personal. I had never encountered someone who could keep eye contact going for so long, so effortlessly! Eye contact is one of those things that can get really uncomfortable, really quickly.
So I'm wondering, is it just Americans who don't like eye contact? Everywhere you go, we wear sunglasses. Even if it's not that sunny! Don't forget, we love our personal space, all of us living in our personal bubbles. Let's face it, you'd probably be pretty weirded out if you were talking with an acquaintance and their face was less than a foot away from yours. Proxemics is so interesting and plays a huge role in the way our relationships work.
However, I'm curious to know if eye contact is something that transcends the rule of proxemics. Even if you're all the way across the room from someone and eye contact is achieved, there's suddenly an intensely personal, intimate moment. We all know the feeling. It can be unnerving! I swear that's why staring contests are so difficult!
How do you feel about eye contact? Are you really good at keeping it? Is there a trick?