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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, throughout my period of seclusion I hadn't ran into anyone I couldn't hold eye contact with but before then, there were plenty of cases where I liked someone even a little and it'd throw off my 'readings' of people and make me look away from them when I was younger and over time I've come to realise that what might have been crushes in the past might have just been strong desires for friendships.

Anyways! Back to the question, does anyone come across people that they can't look in the eye when it's neither a crush or a strong desire for friendship? As if something about the way they look at you gives you butterflies?

One of my teachers does this and friend of a friend does as well and the only thing they have in common is a sense of genuine interest towards me for whatever reason. But it can't be that simple can it?

One genuinely wants to help me out with my paintings and is very interested in that pursuit, the other finds a lot of herself in the insights I point out about myself/her(we're both infjs).

If it helps, as far as I know I'm demisexual and haven't really felt the hots for anyone before. I'm also easily susceptible to other people's emotional states just by looking at their face.. those millions of subliminal details...
 

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I'm gonna explain how this pertains to me in terms of bubbles. Everyone has a bubble. It's their bubble and it's where they are comfortable. Bubbles vary in size. My bubble is usually pretty modest and at these times I feel no real problem meeting anyone's gaze. However sometimes I just feel off or agitated or whatever and then my bubble expands to compensate and brushes other people's bubbles and I don't like that so I just avoid eye contact in general then. You do get people with really LARGE bubbles or stares that naturally pop bubbles (~side-eyes the ENTJs~), I have trouble meeting these people's eyes on good days and will just avoid them on bad days. Unless I know them, then it's cool. Even a source of comfort sometimes.

So basically I'm saying it's usually more about me than them when it comes to making eye contact.
 

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I've trained myself to look at someone while they're talking, but I think sometimes that intimidates other people because my eyes are laser focused.

I find it harder to look at someone's face while I'm thinking deeply about a question, their face and facial expressions are often a distraction to my own thoughts. I usually have to look at the ceiling or the ground. I try to aim for the ground because looking at the ceiling sometimes appears like you're rolling your eyes, so the reactions are never good lol

For some reason though, if I find someone interesting, or I like them, I can look at them while I talk - I find that other people have a hard time doing that if they like me. So that's kind of a strange thing. I guess my curiosity takes over and I kind of forget my fears.

However, I have a really hard time maintaining eye contact with someone I find physically attractive. I can maintain eye contact with someone who I'm emotionally attracted to, but physical attraction is often too much for me to look at the person in the eyes. It's almost like their physical beauty is radiating into my eyes and I can't concentrate.

I find physical attraction to be a bigger distraction than emotional attraction. I think I'm better at managing my emotions.

However, I don't think i struggle too much with looking people in the eye; unless I meet someone who is drop dead gorgeous, amazing personality, and also admitted to liking me - that's about the only time I can't look at them and talk to them. It's too overwhelming to take all of that in :th_wink:
 

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I try to always make eye contact (to make them feel genuinely cared for in that moment, and cue in on their non-verbal language), but it is nearly impossible to do so with someone I know who has had a relationship end, or at a funeral (I usually avoid these as a result).

There is so much intense emotion going through them during times like this, and their eyes give all of it away. It's difficult not to feel personally affected by it, so I'll keep my eye contact to a minimum to keep from feeling all of it myself.

A friend at work had to have her puppy put to sleep because of a defect, and it was all of the next day before I could look her in the eyes to talk to her.
 

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When I don't make eye contact, I find myself looking down more often than not. I've discovered when I look down I'm "checking in" with my heart. It's usually when I'm nervous or during a pause or something like that. I don't usually realize when I'm looking down. I'm better at making sure I make eye contact now. :th_woot:

There's not really certain people I can't look in the eye. When I don't make eye contact it's usually because I'm in a bad mood or something similar to that.
 

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Taking into consideration that I deal with social anxiety this will only apply to friends, but the people I can't look in the eye among my friends are people with personalities that contain too much force. Usually people that conversation is one sided with me not saying much because it becomes too "oppressive" due to extreme amounts of logical content or emotional content, which causes me not to be able to do anything besides looking down. This really only happens with "loud" personalities and occasionally quiet people just because to me how personal it is to look in someone's eyes, I do so sparingly and only when comfortable (which means they need be equally expressive and responsive). With friends who aren't too quiet or too loud I can definitely but it is not my natural state because I prefer looking down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I do prefer looking down as well in most social situations though, there are a few friends(close friends) which I love looking into the eyes of, they're the people who are expressive in ways that don't drain me where I can clearly see how they're feeling at all times, even while they're thinking. I kinda make it a high priority for myself to stay away from loud personalities and people that drain me in any way though, taking them in as-small-as-possible doses.

Recently more than not, my thoughts have drifted into the feeling realm of things, in effort to express(or articulate) how I feel about everything that happens, the other person's or my words/facial cues/thoughts/things I/they do etc. Even how I feel about situations, people and mostly them. It's quite an addictive ball to get rolling with friends and it makes me tear up every time I do it :)

If the other person allows it, it's probably my most favoured trait in a person and what I look for most, the ability to be open-minded about anything and everything that is within my heart and mind.

I've trained myself to look at someone while they're talking, but I think sometimes that intimidates other people because my eyes are laser focused.

I find it harder to look at someone's face while I'm thinking deeply about a question, their face and facial expressions are often a distraction to my own thoughts. I usually have to look at the ceiling or the ground. I try to aim for the ground because looking at the ceiling sometimes appears like you're rolling your eyes, so the reactions are never good lol

For some reason though, if I find someone interesting, or I like them, I can look at them while I talk - I find that other people have a hard time doing that if they like me. So that's kind of a strange thing. I guess my curiosity takes over and I kind of forget my fears.

However, I have a really hard time maintaining eye contact with someone I find physically attractive. I can maintain eye contact with someone who I'm emotionally attracted to, but physical attraction is often too much for me to look at the person in the eyes. It's almost like their physical beauty is radiating into my eyes and I can't concentrate.

I find physical attraction to be a bigger distraction than emotional attraction. I think I'm better at managing my emotions.

However, I don't think i struggle too much with looking people in the eye; unless I meet someone who is drop dead gorgeous, amazing personality, and also admitted to liking me - that's about the only time I can't look at them and talk to them. It's too overwhelming to take all of that in :th_wink:
Haha, I've had to figure out where it is okay to stare into the abyss from as well, I used to look up(which is disengaging) and down and slightly left(which sometimes happens to be where someone breasts are or just below them, my friends being female, not a good spot to zone out on), instead I've just learnt to tilt my head as well. I think that's a good way to spot a very INFJ trait, they're conscious of where they're looking when thinking, they don't completely zone out when thinking and they will either answer you first before speaking their thoughts or the other way around. NTs seem to be unfazed by eye contact or maintain very little of it and INFPs can completely 'zone out' while thinking. Extroverts generally don't place many pauses to think in conversations :p

What you've said puts it rather nicely, a part of me doesn't want to look them directly in the eye constantly because they might 'notice' something but isn't looking away constantly enough of a signal already? The other thing would be me seeing how they feel can be overwhelming if it's some kind of engagement level with me they have that surpasses my current setting for 'boundaries', hence why teachers being engaged and having a nice conversation with me was unsettling!

I learnt to hold eye contact from some body language stuff on the internet when I was still in primary, body language and being more social/having better social skills was something I researched a lot as a kid but not so much anymore since it's pretty much just expanding your comfort zone slowly till your expression of yourself is where you like it at, everything else just falls in place naturally.
 

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I have trouble looking almost anyone in the eye; I got out of the practice, not realizing it would be a major social faux pas, and am just sort of going with it. I’ve got three reasons, one I’ll keep personal, the other two: I have taken lots of time to do soft-eye-focus in an effort to read energy/auras, and I’ve had issues with my left ear being blocked often enough that I started reading lips to hear and understand better. Now I just find looking someone in the eyes incredibly distracting to absorbing what they’re saying, and almost always when I try, it intimidates the crap out of me, no matter who it is.

 

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Both people with social anxiety or avoidant personality disorder and people somewhere on the autism spectrum have a lot of difficulty with eye contact.
I hear ya on this and I almost wholly agree with you, except for the fact that our societies are pushing so hard right now to praise extroverts and to minimize introverts, and all things soft/yin/feminine, that the theory just reeks a bit in my opinion, pee-yew. No offense to you, just my personal issues rising up and getting offended a bit by the world we live in.peace.
(was commenting on social anxiety disorder writeup mostly;it’s just weird to me that people are expected to be so social so much. I find people frickin exhausting)

And to further understanding of my point of view, if anyone’s interested…I say to myself often: Who’s making these social rules? Because what I see is primarily male leaders and I’m not a male, so I seek females to emulate, and the rules that the strong, smart females I see living by are very very different and just work a whole lot better for me.

I mean… In my world, in my eyes, women solely following and supporting a man is a thing of the past. It’s not even close to how I live, but many women still do. Feels like two different worlds to me, therefore different rules are required, different guidelines for personal success.
 

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I hear ya on this and I almost wholly agree with you, except for the fact that our societies are pushing so hard right now to praise extroverts and to minimize introverts, and all things soft/yin/feminine, that the theory just reeks a bit in my opinion, pee-yew. No offense to you, just my personal issues rising up and getting offended a bit by the world we live in.peace.
(was commenting on social anxiety disorder writeup mostly;it’s just weird to me that people are expected to be so social so much. I find people frickin exhausting)

And to further understanding of my point of view, if anyone’s interested…I say to myself often: Who’s making these social rules? Because what I see is primarily male leaders and I’m not a male, so I seek females to emulate, and the rules that the strong, smart females I see living by are very very different and just work a whole lot better for me.

I mean… In my world, in my eyes, women solely following and supporting a man is a thing of the past.It’s not even close to how I live, but many women still do.Feels like two different worlds to me, therefore different rules are required, different guidelines for personal success.
I disagree. I think we are so far in the golden age of introversion, with the internet and all of us are being totally pushed to "share" our personal information and stories. And writing is a golden medium, where even personal stories have big effects on the attention they receive online, I can only imagine it was much worse for introverts in the 60s where most had to conceal and not feel.
 

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I disagree. I think we are so far in the golden age of introversion, with the internet and all of us are being totally pushed to "share" our personal information and stories. And writing is a golden medium, where even personal stories have big effects on the attention they receive online, I can only imagine it was much worse for introverts in the 60s where most had to conceal and not feel.
Ok. I was commenting more on day-to-day real life interactions such as in the workplace.

and in general I’ve found it all but impossible for males to put themselves in my shoes, or they don’t care to try.

society has not ever encouraged this. women are encouraged to do this for men though, and for other women.
 

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Dont see that often anymore - just people looking down at their phones, texting friends etc.
I mean even here, in this brief interaction, I feel like I’m going to a place where I will try to understand where you’re coming from, and you’re just trying to prove me wrong. I could be wrong but that’s how it seems to me.

So I just proved what I was saying, in real time.I live by different social rules than the ones that are pimped out loud, so I can live successfully.

... though I’m not sure that labeling me with a disorder or two is helpful to me.
there are many times I feel healthier and more balanced than the whole of the society that is making up the rules lol
 

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oh god they are reading my thoughts. Shh no such thing. But what if they can? >.> <.< maybe I should think of something else. Can't >.<

what?! stop staring at me (ESTJ friend doesn't unlock his eyes even for a minute and being intrusive with his stare, leave me alone !)

Hmmmm...I wonder if lizards know that they are lizards. Do they even call themselves lizards? What do they call us??!

Sigh. I don't want to be here.

Ohh look at this, I wonder why it is not frozen, our roof is completely frozen over the door creating dangerous icicles. There must be a system that keeps it warm, hmm maybe it has a small space with heating vents? Smart.

God will this person ever shut up?

Sigh...I wonder if he ( 3rd party ) is thinking of me right now as well?

(Totally listening and hypothesizing/imagining the scenarios in my head in accordance with the talk then get lost in how the imagery makes me feel because I do feel as if it is real)..what? I am listening, please go on.

>.< I totally forgot to do this and that, I wasted my whole day, I am so laaazyy whyyyy

I feel like staring is kind of intrusive to personal space, so I give the others their personal space as I expect the others give me personal space

The colors after the rain look so nice..It reminds me of (insert story here)

Sondering about life of strangers around.

etc.
 

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I mean even here, in this brief interaction, I feel like I’m going to a place where I will try to understand where you’re coming from, and you’re just trying to prove me wrong. I could be wrong but that’s how it seems to me.

So I just proved what I was saying, in real time.I live by different social rules than the ones that are pimped out loud, so I can live successfully.

...though I’m not sure that labeling me with a disorder or two is helpful to me.
there are many times I feel healthier and more balanced than the whole of the society that is making up the rules lol
Oh that's perfectly fine, Im not supporting the main idea about disorders or anything. Just that I feel that most people nowadays have given introversion more of a spotlight than back a couple of years, due to everyone's focus on the internet and just messaging on phones, iPads, etc , and other types of social media related stuff.

im not trying to prove you wrong for the sake of it, just that I felt its wrong to say we don't place importance on introversion. For some reason, now that we have all this messaging and social media stuff, less focus has been put on people who actually have a tendency to interact within the bounds of social interaction, and extroversion. I thought it would be interesting to point out .

maybe it's even related to the topic of not being able to hold gaze - I mean, mobiles and social media in general, have an internally generated focus, where we are more focused on expressing internal feelings, thoughts, etc but lose track of human interactions etc and I guess when we have that,we would not want to make as much of an effort in human interactions especially one of the most intimate human interactions of all , which would be looking another in the eyes.
 

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Oh that's perfectly fine, Im not supporting the main idea about disorders or anything. Just that I feel that most people nowadays have given introversion more of a spotlight than back a couple of years, due to everyone's focus on the internet and just messaging on phones, iPads, etc , and other types of social media related stuff.

im not trying to prove you wrong for the sake of it, just that I felt its wrong to say we don't place importance on introversion. For some reason, now that we have all this messaging and social media stuff, less focus has been put on people who actually have a tendency to interact within the bounds of social interaction, and extroversion. I thought it would be interesting to point out .

maybe it's even related to the topic of not being able to hold gaze - I mean, mobiles and social media in general, have an internally generated focus, where we are more focused on expressing internal feelings, thoughts, etc but lose track of human interactions etc and I guess when we have that,we would not want to make as much of an effort in human interactions especially one of the most intimate human interactions of all , which would be looking another in the eyes.
Ah, ok. Interesting!Thanks for posting, enjoyed reading these thoughts.

I was thinking though, I rarely see that at work. People are at computers half the time, other half the time are interacting, noone’s on personal devices really that I see. I peeped your page and see you are a student—if I had to guess, a whole new generation of workers coming into the workplace will be as you have told, less as I have told.
 

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Ah, ok. Interesting!Thanks for posting, enjoyed reading these thoughts.

I was thinking though, I rarely see that at work. People are at computers half the time, other half the time are interacting, noone’s on personal devices really that I see.I peeped your page and see you are a student—if I had to guess, a whole new generation of workers coming into the workplace will be as you have told, less as I have told.
that explains it. And yeah, definitely something of a generation gap . however, I believe we are all capable of scrolling down the facebook newsfeed aimlessly. Heh
 

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....

Anyways! Back to the question, does anyone come across people that they can't look in the eye when it's neither a crush or a strong desire for friendship? As if something about the way they look at you gives you butterflies?

....
Isn't so much a problem. On the other hand, I seldom seek to maintain eye contact during a conversation. Reason for that is that there are just too many good ways to use eye contact for modulating the conversation.

Smokers (and drinkers), especially have a feel for using props to control things. For instance, when you want a question to have extra impact you may look away from your drink, flick off an ash, raise your eye lashes and make direct eye contact just as the question ends.

Face it, thanks to viewing countless movie and personal conversations, we've had a super education in how to set a mood, ask questions, and get across ideas. Naturally, an INFJ will instinctively know how to use eye contact. So, often will the person with whom you are speaking. More fun with two players.
 
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