How long can you make eye contact, before looking away?

@LittleMel (14055)
Canada
November 24, 2007 7:07pm CST
I don't always look at someone in the eye continuously when we talk, now and then I have to look away. To make sure people know I'm paying attention, I will remember some details in our talks and ask questions about them later on. So I do pay attention, I just don't look at them in the eye all the time. I'd say I look away every 60 or 65 seconds. I actually tested this a few times, talking to a few different people and no reading or watching other things, just talked. What about you? Do you make eye contact all the time and continuously? How long before you look away?
2 people like this
16 responses
@Postrock (273)
• Italy
25 Nov 07
Depends on the someone..if it is someone i want to have good impression on i keep looking them in the eyes. Also its funny to see someone asking this, years ago it was like a game for me, i would just pick some random person and stare him/her in the eyes, just to see who would take away the look first. I usually always "won", but it happened once in a club that i started staring at a girl, in her eyes, she understood the game on spot and we just kept watching each other for minutes. Then I LOST..i had to take my eyes away first. It's impressive how vulnerable you can feel by looking people in the eyes. It must be a psychological reason that i dont understand.
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
I think I know that game, but never had anyone played it with me. There was a time I stared at someone and I almost got asked for a date hahaha he was really cute I never saw him before, too bad I looked away when he approached so he turned away. I should've come and talked to him instead, silly me!
@Postrock (273)
• Italy
25 Nov 07
hehe..in my example the girl was already with another guy. He was dancing while she wasnt, and she was pretty goodlooking too. So i'd figured that she would be a perfect "test" for my game. And i was right!! She won over me..how can i accept the defeat? haha.. 2 days ago i hung out with a friends and 2 girls we know. One is an oldtime friend of mine the other girl is quite nice so i could think of her as a possible date. I really feel comfortable with her, but i have to say i didnt keep much eyecontact, i dont know why. hey sorry for bothering with that. but is it you in your own profile photo?
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
you should, tell ehr you like her, through your eyes anyway, I wish I looked like that avatar. I always wanted blonde or whitish hair
@pyewacket (44036)
• United States
25 Nov 07
Depending on whom I'm talking to, I only occasionally look away from a person's eye contact. I'm pretty much a starer I guess. It's usually them who might break eye contact. LOL
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
I remember you are a Scorpion, maybe this is why. Most of my female friends of this sun sign always look at me in the eye, but they don't make me uncomfortable. The men do.
1 person likes this
@pyewacket (44036)
• United States
26 Nov 07
LOL--yes I guess we Scorpios are famous for staring..hehe
1 person likes this
@lols189 (4798)
8 Feb 08
i do make eye contact when i am having a conversation with somebody but it is a habit for me to look away about every 30 seconds as i dont want to feel as if i am stirring at the person i am speaking to
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
9 Feb 08
30 mins is quite average I'm surprised I can do longer
@faith210 (11233)
• Philippines
27 Nov 07
Hi LittleMel! I think i look at her/him almost all the time when we are having conversations and just look away for a few seconds before looking at the person again. Maybe in a span of more than a minute before i gazed down or look away then look at him/her back again. That is if it is pure cnversation and we are not eating or watching or whatever. Take care and have a nice day. :)
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
27 Nov 07
I look away longer than a few seconds again. focusing too long makes my eyes tired
@raychill (6530)
• United States
26 Nov 07
I've never really counted and it all depends on the person and the situation. For instance, a job interview or meeting with your boss is always good to make and maintain eye contact. However, if it's a complete stranger I probably won't even maintain eye contact for more than a few seconds. On that same note, if it's a stranger that I'm getting to know (date/new friend/etc.) then it's kind of important to maintain eye contact. I pretty much can only keep eye contact with people that I am comfortable with.
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
26 Nov 07
yes it is important during job interview I have that experience
@fab315 (1242)
• Philippines
25 Nov 07
Hello! It depends..if that someone whom I'm talking too is handsome and good looking then I'll be making an eye contact whilst taking to him...hhaaayyy! wehheehe But really, I don't make eye contact very long while talking, I feel uneasy and I feel that i'm making the person feel uneasy too, and if I keep an eye contact for long, I don't want that person to think am staring at him/her and not paying attention. Maybe a look and back from time to time works for me, like 40 seconds, what's important is you nod and smile while listening, making the other end feel you're really paying attention to what he/she's saying. Take care *smile* ciao! c",)
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
I don't feel good to keep looking at someone in the eye either but most people here would actually look for our eyes to meet if I don't maintain eye contact. so now I'm used to it
@polachicago (19077)
• United States
25 Nov 07
I never think about, eye can stay in focus for a while on any object, but need to blink or stay away from focusing once a while...probably the same principle apply to eye contact...
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
I think so. it's the same organ we're talking about. blinking for sure is necessary. I blink often.
@chrislotz (8203)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
I always make eye contact with a person I am talking to. I might look away sometimes, but I have never paid attention to that. I don't like it when someone I'm talking to doesn't look me in the eye. I feel that if they don't, they have something to hide or they are not telling me the truth. My sister used to go with a guy that rolled his eyes upward when he was talking to anyone. I hated this. To me he was shifty and lieing. I can't trust this kind of person. As it turned out I was right about him. Every thing that came out of that boys mouth was a lie. He took my sister for a ride and they are not together any more, after 5 years.
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
that sounds awkward. why would he roll his eyes upward? maybe this is just his eyes? I met a girl whose eyes keep coming together in the center, but she is not a liar at least not that I know of
• Philippines
25 Nov 07
It depends. When i am aware that i am having longer eye contact with the one i am speaking to, i look away after at least 30 seconds. But sometimes if i am not aware of it, can look at the eye of the one talking to me for at least 45 seconds or more But if i like the one i am speaking to, i fixed my eye on him for a very long time. Thanks
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
now that's what I call romantic eyes :) the more you like someone the longer you look at each other in the eye
@ayou82 (3460)
• Philippines
25 Nov 07
Yeah but not that really long coz my eyes gets tired so easily but i notice if im really angry my eyes widens and can stare long.
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
oh yes mine do the same if I'm angry or really curious I kind of stare
@fanji008 (782)
• China
25 Nov 07
Hi,there! Whenever I talk to someone,I try to tell myself to have eye contact with the person. I think it shows that I respect the person and I pay attention to what he/she say.But I don't stare at sb cause that'll give the other one an uncomfortable feeling. I usually look at sb's eyes for a while and then move to sth else and then come back again:) I may look one or two minutes before I look away and then after 30 seconds,I come back.LOL! Thanks for the discussion and have a nice day:)
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
I don't know why eye contact is considered staring. by the way yes I look away too.
@nengs10 (3189)
• Philippines
25 Nov 07
It will only take more or less 5 seconds, I supposed. I don't really stare at people. That may annoy them in some sense. For one, I hate it when people look me in the eye. I feel intimidated or something.
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
that's very short time. eye contact is a completely different thing from a stare, it shouldn't annoy anyone if it's only eye contact.
@figuah (82)
• Iceland
25 Nov 07
i would say i 10-15 seconds,dont know what it is but i just cant look someone in the eyes while im talking to them but i can do that when im talking to someone i know really well like my mom or my girlfriend
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
never thought about that. why would it be different, talking with someone you like and a stranger?
• United States
25 Nov 07
I guess I paid a lot of attention to this when I went to college for social work. We had a chapter about this...because you don't want to look like your starring someone down, but you also want them to know that you are paying attention to them. I think as long as you look away and look back to them, they know your paying attention. Also if you are nodding, and doing other things that also helps. I would say 30-60 is good to look away and back again. :)
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
there are a lot of people out there can stay over 2 minutes. I'm not comfortable with these guys since if I look away they actually move their heads so that our eyes meet again ggrrr why are they doing that I wonder
@megumiart (3781)
• United States
25 Nov 07
I make eye contact with the person I'm talking to as long as I feel like. It depends on what we are talking about, if it's something serious, I'll make eye contact the entire time.
1 person likes this
@LittleMel (14055)
• Canada
25 Nov 07
if it's serious I will force my self to pay attention in any way I can including longer eye contact
@ar2sun (123)
• India
25 Nov 07
More than 5 seconds u will look stupid unless the person is one whom u love ....