Do You Fear Making Eye-Contact? Let’s Learn About Eye Contact Anxiety

Last Update on June 20, 2022 : Published on June 20, 2022

For some people like me, it’s hard to maintain eye contact!

It’s not like I fear talking or people, but there’s something that stops me from maintaining eye contact. Especially, during professional purposes, I lose eye contact due to which people think I am anxious or fear them! Is there something like eye contact anxiety?

Have you also ever wondered why you can’t make eye contact during a conversation? When we avoid eye contact, it might be possible that we are experiencing eye contact anxiety according to psychology.

While eye contact anxiety interferes with our social interactions, it also impacts our personal and professional life; it means we must know how to maintain good eye contact in relation to our social interactions. In this blog, let’s read what eye contact anxiety is and how we can overcome it with the help of effective strategies.

What does Exactly Eye Contact Anxiety Mean?


Eye contact anxiety can be defined as the discomfort people feel while talking directly in the eyes of other people. People who experience eye contact anxiety avoid making eye contact while talking because they are shy or uncomfortable looking at the eyes directly. They may fear the anxiety of being scrutinized or judged. This condition or gear of being stated at is also known as scopophobia.

Some people generally ask if avoiding eye contact is a symptom of anxiety or not. To answer that, I found that avoiding eye contact is related to self-reported fear which can also be found in people with social anxiety disorder. Sometimes, avoiding eye contact is misjudged as being aloof, unfriendly, and arrogant while it is related to shyness, undefined fear, and lack of confidence.

Causes of Avoiding Eye Contact

People can avoid eye contact for various reasons. This condition can also be related to an undiagnosed mental health condition as the symptoms are related to a lack of confidence and shyness. Below are some of the possible reasons behind eye contact anxiety.

Social Anxiety Disorder and Avoiding Eye contact

People with social anxiety disorder often fear making direct eye contact with people as it provokes their discomfort and anxiety. This can be linked to genetics according to psychology.

Autism and Avoiding Eye Contact

Research also shows that avoiding eye contact can also be linked with autism. Since autistic people are hypersensitive they might avoid eye contact as it can be related to extreme pain and discomfort.

The Importance of Making Eye Contact


Maintaining eye contact during any type of conversation should be mastered by everyone because it is one of the important social skills. Not having or avoiding eye contact can impact your professional and personal relationships as people might start thinking that you’re way too shy or anxious.

Therefore, it is really important to master this skill especially during interviews or while dating. It shows that you’re confident enough and are a perfect fit for the given role. Below are some of the essential points prove why it is crucial to maintain eye contact?

  • Shows that you’re confident
  • You’re being remembered always
  • Show that you’re speaking fact-fully with confidence
  • People start perceiving you as intelligent
  • People are better to read and understand when you look confident and intelligent
  • Eye contact does not require any other non-verbal cues

Effective Ways to Overcome Eye Contact Anxiety

We all might have been stuck in a moment wherein we have feared being misjudged, therefore, it is important to master the skill of maintaining eye contact. With the help of the below-mentioned ways, you can improve your eye contact skills and become better at maintaining direct eye contact.

Ways to Reduce Eye Contact Anxiety

People who already have or are diagnosed with an anxiety disorder can take the help of Cognitive behavioral therapy. This type of therapy will help you in overcoming your fear and will help in maintaining direct eye contact with people.

If you’re not diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, you can work on building your tolerance level by keeping engaging yourself in eye contact and maintaining activities. In case of anxious episodes, you can try deep breathing exercises.

Ways to Improve Your Eye Contact Skills

Below are some of the effective ways to improve your eye contact skills:

  • Establish eye contact in the beginning so that you can build confidence gradually.
  • Keep holding your eye contact so that you can focus on listening andspeaking as well.
  • If you wish to look away, do it slowly, don’t do it directly.
  • If you are experiencing fear, you can build your confidence by looking near the eyes.
  • Be a good listener, focus on listening, and gradually you will be able to establish eye contact.

I hope this blog helps you with ways to overcome eye contact anxiety and prosper in your life positively. Comment down your views on the same. For more such content, connect with us on all social media platforms.

Thanks for reading!

About The Author

Aayushi Kapoor
Aayushi Kapoor

Aayushi is a Content Creator at Calm Sage. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Food Technology and a Master's Degree in Clinical Nutrition. Her constant interest in the improvement of mental health, nutrition, and overall wellness embarked upon her career as a “full-time educational writer.” She likes to make an asynchronous connection with her readers. Her mantra for living life is "What you seek is seeking you".

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