6 Benefits Of Eye Contact When Speaking Publicly

6 Benefits Of Eye Contact When Speaking Publicly

Why Eye Contact Is So Important In Public Speaking

If there is one easy but extremely powerful thing you can do to enhance your impact as a presenter, to persuade your audience to see things as you see them, and make it more likely your audience will understand and agree to your idea, it is without a doubt purposeful eye contact.

Having eye contact helps you build rapport with your audience and will keep them engaged with your presentation. It also gives them a sense of involvement and conveys your message on a more personal level.

6 Benefits Of Eye Contact When Speaking Publicly

  1. It projects authority and confidence. When you have sustained, focused eye contact it can portray the position authority on a subject. If you can’t look people in the eye, you can’t expect them to believe or agree with your point of view. Good eye contact can automatically also communicate confidence, conviction, and assertiveness during your presentation.
  2. Helps you read your audience. Use direct eye contact to read and understand your audience better. As you speak learn if the audience is telling you everything about how they perceive your presentation. An extremely useful way to read their body language is in their eyes. Are their eyes looking up at you with interest and a smile, staring at the wall behind you or looking down on the ground?
  3. Enables you to concentrate better. When your eyes are scanning a room you end up taking in a lot of imagery. All of the different colors and shapes actually slow your brain down because it’s trying to concentrate on what you’re saying and also on all of the other things that your eyes browse over.  By making direct eye contact often, it allows your brain to focus on just one thing and to focus on what you’re trying to say.
  4. It helps your audience pay better attention. Making eye contact with somebody is a good way to get them to pay attention to you.  With available technology at our fingertips as well as other distractions, it’s really easy for your audience to quickly lose focus.  If you look at them they will likely also look at you.
  5. Allows your audience to participate. People will feel welcome to participate when they see you scanning the crowd. They’ll be at liberty to react with looks of an understanding, smiles, and raise their brows. If you look at them long enough to create a bond, you’ll find a spark of recognition in their eyes. In that precise moment, you can transform them from being passive receivers to active participants.
  6. Helps you have a better speaking tempo. When you look someone in the eye for three to five seconds, you will naturally slow down your speech, which will make you sound more confident and presidential. This slower speech tempo will help you talk at a more natural pace and makes it easier for others to understand you.

The Eye Contact Takeaway

A lot of presenters make the mistake of focusing too much on their content and not enough on engaging with their audience. No doubt your content is truly important, but if the audience doesn’t feel connected to you or what you’re saying, then all of your hard work could be for nothing.

Being able to make direct eye contact with individuals will give them a sense of involvement in your presentation and helps to convey your objectives on a personal level.

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