For day 26 I held eye contact with strangers on my walk to the dentist.
Though it was a small challenge with little risk, I think most would find the prolonged eye contact difficult. It’s a great challenge to try when out and about and requires no set up.
There’s two ways I handled the challenge:
There’s a tension that builds when you make eye contact with a strangers. You either break it, relieve it, or accept the tension. Breaking was not an option.
Most of the time I relieved the tension by smiling or nodding. But you could also lean into the tension and not smile or nod. That’s really uncomfortable! But maybe, after a while you’d become accustomed to it.
In either case, you’re learning something important. When you relieve the tension, you’re learning how to make others comfortable around you. When you grow the tension you’re learning how to handle social awkwardness. Either way, you improve your social skills and resilience.
I only tried this with 3 people yesterday, so I’d like to experiment more with with this challenge.
If you’re brave enough, try this on your next walk.
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