Video conferences have grown in popularity as the world continues in lockdown. While video connection has promising effects, research suggests we might be better equipped to read someone’s emotions without solely relying on visual reference. Experts offer their advice when it comes to strengthening relationships remotely when connecting via technology.
Harness the power of silence.
The space in between words says more than dialogue could ever convey. Experts suggest silence can assist in feelings of closeness while also inspiring creative thoughts. When we constantly fill the silence, we are robbed by the nourishment of stillness.
Share space equally.
There’s a lot going on and while we may have a lot to share, be ready to listen to your conversation’s participants. No one likes to be talked at.
Connect with the eyes.
Bridget Waller, professor of evolutionary psychology at the University of Portsmouth, says reading expressions becomes especially challenging when we are on a group video chat, as we miss out on “gaze cues”. When video-chatting, remove the “self-view” to better focus on your partner.
Create new forms of touch.
As we distance ourselves physically, human touch is becoming a rarity. Creating new forms of touch ensures we are still able to feel each other. Prof Christian van Nieuwerburgh shares the idea of building gestures like touching the heart when speaking to convey and relate through emotion.
These are just a few suggestions made by researchers in communication. The more we face physical isolation, the more we need human connection. While we may not be able to hug our neighbors, we can utilize the power of our emotional fields to deepen remote relationships.
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