As the days grow a bit shorter, and we’re drawn inside by chilly nights, we’ve been exploring how we might stay connected with those around us–especially as we continue social distancing during the long Maine winter.
At valo, we talk about the value of eye contact with our teens, and the power it has to deepen our sense of connection and belonging.
In her 2017 Ted Talk, Eye Contact Has the Potential to Change Your Life, Jessica Leavitt stresses the importance of offering eyes to another–and dives into the fear of vulnerability that may follow. Leavitt emphasizes the distinction between looking and seeing.
Looking is passive, while seeing is active. Looking is an observation, seeing is a conversation–a chance to create a space for a connection to emerge.
So, how can we practice seeing?
Truly seeing someone isn’t always easy. It means take a moment to meet the eyes of another face-to-face (whether that person is a family member or a stranger passing on the street).
Pausing to recognize the gaze of a friend over coffee, or a family member by the backyard fire, leaves us feeling energized and connected long after the moment has passed.
The ability to look into a person’s eyes in silence, listening to the sound and cadence of his/her/their voice, is an opportunity to embrace–even from six feet away.
The briefest of moments together, with eyes wide open, can remind us of the deep power of connection. And isn't that what life's all about? We hope you'll go see for yourself.