I love this article because while mom is not a tyrant, she always wears her sunglasses indoors. I cannot tell you how many arguments we have had because I “misread” her simply because I could not see her eyes. She does always look cool, though, just like those tyrants and despots talked about. Read this article – so funny and so true.
Mediators send so much information across the table through words and body language. And because such an important part of the job is that the parties trust you as a mediator and therefore open up to you and use you to your fullest potential, I also realized then, with the help of the above-referenced article, how important eye contact really is by a mediator. The eyes yield the soul, right? I am sure there is poetry about that. I find myself making so much eye contact because it is one way I get to know the parties – watching them and looking into their eyes. We convey so much with our eyes so remember that at your next mediation. Are you being compassionate, empathic, judgmental, angry? Someone will read it in your eyes. Building trust is so key for a mediator so remember to use your eyes to show someone you understand them, you are engaged, you care.