4 Minutes

"Can simply looking at someone for 4 minutes improve your relationship?"

In an age where we spend much of our time looking at our phones, we’ve lost the connection with other people. To show sincerity and good intentions, we look people in the eye, but usually it’s only for a few seconds, then our eyes wander off as we continue to talk to them.

The eyes are windows to the soul, and through our eyes, we can communicate so much without words – love, happiness, anger, joy and sadness as well as illness. But looking into someone’s eyes for longer than a minute will create a connection that can become quite uncomfortable, mostly because we just aren’t used to it. In our busy lives, it’s rarely done.

Couples in new relationships stare into each others’ eyes as a way to quickly connect and “feel” each other. Coupled with the euphoria of infatuation, it’s quite exciting and can bond the couple as they continue on the path of togetherness and fall in love. Then, looking into each others’ eyes provides an intimate way that communicates the words that may be hard to speak. But many times, after a couple has been together for a while, it’s difficult to spend time together to just sit and look into each other’s eyes because of work demands, kids, and just being plain tired. It’s a practice that would be important to continue in keeping the bond of love strong.

When we were babies, many of our parents, grandparents and family members would look into our eyes with so much love and adoration and as we gazed back, the bond and connection was established and we learned that this is what love felt like. As we grew older and had other interests, friends and school, we stopped spending the time with our families like we did, let alone look into each other’s eyes to continue or reconnect that bond.

When couples and families go to counseling, many times the counselor just becomes a referee as each person unloads their unhappiness and frustration and it isn't until the second or third session that the counselor is even able to find out what the true issue or issues are. Imagine if marriage and family counselors began their sessions having their clients look into each others’ eyes for the 4 minutes; it would be a very different and more effective session in dealing with conflict resolution.

One day, when you’re alone with your spouse, a parent, a sibling, take the time to look into each other’s eyes like they did in this video. Promise each other to keep the gaze, getting past the uncomfortable feelings, because you both will feel them. Then see what happens as a result of that time spent. It will be an amazing experience and I’m sure you’ll feel closer and more inclined to open up and share feelings of love and appreciation. It also may provide a communication pathway to resolve feelings of anger and resentment. Wouldn’t that be a wonderful thing to do before that person is no longer in your life or on this earth?

Besides looking into other peoples’ eyes, stand in front of a mirror and look into your own eyes. What do you see? What do you feel? Do you find yourself not being able to keep your own gaze? Don’t give up. Keep trying and you will soon find that this is a great exercise in establishing self-love; something so very important and necessary in being able to love someone else.

So go ahead, give this a try. It only takes 4 minutes, but in those 4 minutes, there is much that can be felt and communicated and the bond will definitely become stronger.

I’d really like to know how it works for you, so feel free to share what you experience. ~ © 2016 T. A. Garcia

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